Since I first published pattern and instructions for self-sewing the Optimized Hybrid Cloth Mask, which fits very snug and gapless even without a nose piece, I have been asked repeatedly about adjustments for certain face shapes and special needs. In this post, I have collected a selection of these customized hybrid mask patterns and templates!
Adaptations to my original hybrid cloth mask
If you haven’t already done so, please download the introduction, instructions, pattern and template for sewing the original hybrid cloth mask as a PDF, and print them! If you have already sewn the original mask and understood all the details of the pattern and its manufacturing process, the adjustments should not cause you any problems.
To use the adjusted patterns and templates, simply follow the original instructions – except for one particular detail, which I have adjusted in each case, and which I explain below. These details can be freely varied and combined!
Overall, it was important to me to (a) keep the original flat shape, so that the adjusted masks are as easy to maintain and iron, (b) avoid darts or seams in the middle of the mask, as these could possibly pose a safety risk, and (c) not multiply the layers of fabric created by folding, so that the adjustments are as easy as possible to sew with a machine.
With careful handling, a self-sewn mask can be rather effective for protecting others from its wearer, but the protection for the wearer is extremely limited. If you decide to sew and use this mask, you do so at your own risk, and you should of course still follow the usual safety rules (distance, hand hygiene, cough / sneeze protocol, etc.)!
Simple Adjustments without a special Pattern
The most simple way to adjust is to combine different lengths and widths. For a long face, you can use the pattern in size L (22 x 22 cm / 8.6″ x 8.6″), cut the width to size M (20 cm / 8″) and use the corresponding template in M. For a wide face, use the pattern in size M (20 x 20 cm / 8″ x 8″), cut the width to size L (22 cm / 8.6″) and use the template in L.
Patterns for adjusting the Reverse Pleat Height
The original hybrid mask fits great on most faces, and the reverse pleat seals the nose area so snug that even without a nose piece, most people’s glasses do not fog up! But every face is different, and some seamstresses asked me if there was a way to adjust the reverse pleat for larger noses or wearing it higher up, and that’s how the Hybrid Nose Mask with a slightly deeper backwards pleat was born. Big thanks to Brandie for being the first to try out this variant!
There are several ways to lengthen this top part. If you just add some length and proceed as usual, it is very likely that you will run into problems when sewing, because it’s to many layers for your machine. Another way would be to add length, then redistribute the bottom pleats, but this leads to the pleats not being where you need them… That’s why I chose to add a curve, which offers the desired length without compromising on the mask’s fit or the ease of sewing.
Because noses and needs are so different, there are two variants with different lengths! One is just half more (3 cm / 1.2”) than standard (2 cm / 0.8”), the other has double length (4 cm / 1.6″). For other measures, feel free to try yourself!
Patterns for adjusting the Chin Length
There are different ways to wear my hybrid mask. The majority of wearers leaves the pleats mostly folded, so that the mask sits at the edge of the chin, fits tight all around and, due to the pleats, allows unrestricted facial movements. Some others prefer to unfold the pleats all the way, over the chin to the neck, where the length may become a bit tight or gappy. As a remedy for this, there is the Hybrid Chin Mask, which has a fourth pleat folding at its very bottom.
This pattern may also be suitable for those who dislike the small filter opening of the original hybrid mask. If you want, you can either enlarge the filter opening or stitch down the edges of inner and outer layer and leave them completely open to the bottom! Thanks to the bottom pleat, the filter shouldn’t slip out, even though the edge is open.
Customized pattern for Beards
Another common request was guys (or their partners) who wanted to accommodate a beard inside their masks, to be safer than with a mask on top of the beard. For the Hybrid Beard Mask, two segments that fold into a third pleat are added the bottom, and as far as I can tell from pictures, they shape very smoothly around the bearded chin! Even longer beards can be comfortably worn in the bottom pleat, and unlike attached beard pouches, the rounded Hybrid Beard Mask fits as gapless as a beard mask possibly could. – Big thanks to Gelo for trying out this modification!
Patterns with more space to breathe and speak
Most of those who have difficulty breathing or speaking with masks are happy with the original hybrid mask, while others, due to face shape (e.g. flat nose) or special needs (e.g. asthma, HSP, autism, sensory issues), need more space. For them, I made the Dart Pattern and Bony Pattern! They can be combined with each other or the space template.
An obvious solution to create space is a dart, which can also be added to finished masks. To do this, put the mask on your face, draw the bottom edge together until you find a comfortable fit, and pin it in place. Then take off the mask, mark the distance and the end of the triangle indicated by the pin. Set this triangle to the middle and sew a dart, from the inside of the mask! Since you’ll have to sew over the filter opening, you can wear a filtering mask underneath.
To sew the dart right away, use the Hybrid Dart Pattern. Cut your fabrics according to pattern, first sew the darts of the inner and outer fabric and iron them apart. Then, continue as ususal, with the upper and lower seam! Depending on measurements and comfort, the dart can be altered in width or height, or even rounded. The darted hybrid mask has been nicknamed “teacher’s mask” or “teacher’s pet”, as teachers and speakers have a particular liking for it :)
If you want the mask to stand out further away from your mouth, you can use the Hybrid Bony Pattern (lovingly called “muzzle” :)) with boning. You can either sew the boning directly onto your mask (with some hand stitching, boning can even be applied to a finished mask!), or slide it into tunnels that you topstitch on after the first two seams have been sewn and you have turned your piece right side out. If you’d like to have the boning interchangeable, you can sew a buttonhole on the outermost edge of the inside of your mask, right after cutting your fabric.
Templates for adapting the width to face shapes
These templates can be used individually with the original hybrid cloth mask pattern, or together with one of the length adjustments, to achieve a fit that is perfectly tailored to your – or your recipient’s – face shape and preferences.
For particularly petite or triangular faces, the Hybrid Petite Mask with a more pronounced trapezoid shape fits a little better. If necessary, the angle can be increased. For particularly big or square faces on the other hand, I recommend the simple Hybrid Big Mask (or: no template needed :)) – and for faces that are wider at the bottom than at nose height (e.g. with a thick beard), the trapezoid angle can be set accordingly, f.e. with the standard template upside down.
In petite faces, the mask may protrude slightly under the chin. To avoid this, there’s the Hybrid Round Mask that pulls the bottom up from the sides! Another variant is the Hybrid Space Mask for people who dislike having a mask close to their mouth. Please take into account the extra width from the beginning here, and cut 1 cm / 0,4” more on each side!
With complex shaped sides, it may become slightly more difficult to attach the drawstring channels, but it is worth it :)
Usage and Combinations of Patterns and Templates
You can combine all the Hybrid Mask patterns with each other and with the templates, in order to solve your specific problem – and to find the adaptation that fits perfectly! To combine two patterns, simply cut both on the same line (ideally, line B, right above the pattern name, as it doesn’t pleat!), join the pieces together and tape them on both sides.
The best way to find a suitable fit is to first sew the original hybrid mask and then look at all the details. Where is it too big, where maybe too small? With a thick beard, for example, you can clearly see that the mask stretches over the chin and that the bottom edges slide forward. As a logical consequence, you would use the beard pattern with the big template. Children often have tiny faces, so the original pattern with the petite template usually fits particularly well.
Another thing you should be aware of is the way the mask is tied (pictured above is my infographic on mask tying techniques!), as this changes the fit. Most masks fit well when the ties are pulled straight back, over and under the ear, and even better when the lower tie is pulled up. If you prefer to wear both ties under your ear (e.g. to protect your glasses / hearing aid), the fit of the mask shifts and can be drastically improved with petite template and nose pattern.
By the way, the photos in this post are showing a combination of Hybrid Nose Mask 1 (my nose isn’t small, but the 2 was too big for me and Minna the manikin!) and Hybrid Chin Mask with layers made of polyester, chiffon and cotton.
Do the patterns and templates fit you, and do you find your and your loved ones’ face shapes and preferences here? Did I maybe forget to cover an important shape, feature or preference? I am looking forward to read your comments!
Download of modified patterns and templates as printable PDF
Here you can download a printable PDF with all eight adjusted patterns and templates for my Hybrid Cloth Mask [V6 | Oct 5th, 2020] on 6 pages, in EU Din A4 or US letter format. Before download, please read the conditions below!
* Conditions of Use, Rights and Sharing
This design, pattern and instructions are protected by German copyright laws (© Iris Luckhaus | All rights reserved). I hereby agree to a non-commercial use of my design, which means that you may sew masks for yourself, your family and friends or for donating them to others for free, given that my copyright, name and website are always included!
Without my prior written permission, you may not reproduce, distribute or commercially use any of this material in any way. This means that you are not authorized to present this design (or modifications of it) as your own, and that you may not publish your own photo or video tutorials with my pattern! As long as it’s not a tutorial though, I enjoy seeing your pictures with my mask, and thank you very much for tagging @irisluckhaus and #luckhausmask! :)
For updates and further developments (which are sure to come!), please follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Xing, LinkedIn, Pinterest or YouTube. If you’d like to share my pattern with your friends, feel free to use my posts!
I’m spending a lot of unpaid time on elaborating and explaining those instructions, helping the helpers to help. If you’d like to encourage this, I’d highly appreciate if you could buy me a little time via Paypal (post@irisluckhaus)!
If you’d like to use my instructions commercially (i.e. with the intention of making a profit), f.e. by selling masks sewn according to my pattern, please contact me and let me know more about your business, your location and your ideas!
Great thanks to Matthias, Angelika, Reinhard and Minna the manikin for enthusiasm and support from near and far, for reading and trying out, as well as to the amazing members of various Facebook mask making groups – first of all Open Source Medical Supplies! – for awesome encouragement, good questions, exciting challenges and enthusiastic testing of ideas for pattern adjustments! And more thanks to every single one who sews, donates and wears masks! :)