With back to school in full swing, and masks being mandatory for grades 4 through 12, I thought it would be great to feature a few local mask makers from the Edmonton area. We all know that wearing masks isn’t the funnest thing, but if you get fun, funky patterns for the masks, it can make wearing a mask a lot more tolerable, especially for our children!
I am excited to share these local mask makers. They have lots of different patterns to pick from, and if you let your child pick out the one(s) they like best, it’s a great way to let them feel involved and like it’s more of a choice, and not something they have to do.
Cornet Creations is our first local mask maker. Maria did not start out making masks, her shop includes scrunchies, hair ties, and when the need came up, she started making masks.
The masks are made of 3-layers of a polyester, cotton blend. There is a pocket inside the mask to add a filter between the layers. Cornet Creations uses rubber bands for the ear strap as they have been “supply proof,” meaning that when there are shortages, they have been consistent. The masks also comes with extra bands if needed. And if the client has an allergy to rubber, Maria can make fabric bands instead.
The masks feature more of a tailored style for being around the nose and chin and the masks can be flipped for a better fit. All of the fabrics are washed when they are bought. Included with the purchase of your masks are blue shop ties cut up with a write up on how they make a great filter for your mask, as well as CDC recommendations for cloth masks. Be sure to wash the mask every time they are worn.
Adult masks are $10, and Maria will make children’s masks on special request for $7.
Maria based her masks on the lighter test. This means that if you can blow out a lighter with your mask on, it’s not filtering enough. You should not be able to blow the flame out.
My Thoughts: Cornet Creations has some really fun patterns for masks, which will be a huge bonus for children! These masks do not have a nose wire, but the fit of these masks are great and sit high enough on the nose to help prevent fogging of glasses. I like that there is a pocket inside the mask for filters.
Funtastique is an online shop specializing in unique gifts and clothing for the entire family. Again, Funtastique saw a need for reusable masks and started making them. Funtastique is located in Parkland County, just outside of Wabamun.
The masks made by Funtastique are a 3-layered mask with the outside shell being a 100% cotton or a 65% Polyester/35% Cotton blend fabric; the middle layer is a non-woven fabric called Polypropylene.
Funtastique tried about 7 different mask designs before settling on this pattern, which requires no nose wire and there are no pockets to change filters. Funtastique felt that the less handling of the mask is the most ideal, and masks should be switched with a new, clean one for it to be most effective in keeping you healthy. And with a nose wire, over time with washing, the nose wire could cause wear and eventually poke through the fabric where it is located. Michelle wanted these masks to last a long time since money, for most people, is tight and she did not want people throwing their money away on a mask that would only last a month with regular washings.
Michelle has a soon-t0-be 4-year old daughter who likes to test out everything new she makes. Out of all of the mask patterns, this one she kept on the longest. The curved front of the masks, paired with the Polypropylene fabric keeps the mask from sitting close to the mouth, making talking and breathing easier.
Check out more of Funtastique’s masks on Facebook here.
My Thoughts: The masks from Funtastique are great! They are a little bit smaller than other masks I have tried, so they fit my face a lot more comfortably. Even without a nose wire, the fit on the nose is great! I don’t find my glasses fogging up with this mask. Overall, this is a great fitting mask!
The third company, Masks Matters, also came to be by accident. Jacqueline only started making masks about two or three weeks ago.
After buying some masks for her 5-year old daughter in preparation for school, Jacqueline saw a need for masks. The masks she had bought were awesome; however, it was the ear loops she did not like. She even bought a mask from 7-11, but what was on the package was NOT what the mask actually looked like and it had only one layer. The masks she had purchased for her son had a nose piece, but she did not like them and found them too flimsy.
So, being a crafty person, Jacqueline thought ‘why don’t I try and make one for me and my daughter (why didn’t I think of this before I bought some?!).’ After scouring the internet looking for the best mask types, and looking to see if there were any free patterns, Amazon became her go to for good, quality products for ear loops and nose wires.
After finally finding a pattern she liked, she went to the sewing machine. After making herself and her a daughter a mask, her husband told her how great they were, and what great quality they were. After that, she thought “I wonder if there are people out there that are thinking the same thing I am and need of good quality masks.’
Jacqueline started searching for some fun, pretty, different cotton fabric. She started at Fabricland; however, felt she was limited, so she went back to the internet and found some really cool fabrics. She is currently waiting for some fun patterns to arrive, but with them coming from the States, USPS is a little slow right now.
Another thing that led Jacqueline to mask making is the fact that she had to take a forced, unpaid leave of absence from her work. She kept telling her work that she wanted to work from home, they would not let her so she started looking for jobs that can be done from home; thankfully she found one! Jacqueline hopes the new job goes well, because with COVID-19, you just don’t know what the future holds. Mask making will help supplement income as she is having to take a significant pay cut in making the choice to work from home.
For Jacqueline, it is all about quality, not quantity! The name Masks Matters came from the fact that Jacqueline is asthmatic, and her husband is diabetic. They are not terrified of catching COVID-19, but instead are cautious and when she sees others wearing masks, it means to her that, Masks Matters.
Make sure to check out Masks Matters on Facebook here.
My Thoughts: I love these masks. The patterns are fun and bright and colourful! I love that it comes with a removable filter that can be washed with the mask. The wired nose piece helps prevent my glasses from fogging up. I really like how light these masks are. She is currently working on custom masks for my husband and I am really excited to see how these masks fit!
4. Masks by Raylene
Raylene is a stay at home mom of 3 girls. She grew up learning to sew from her mom. Her Oma was a seamstress and her Gramma was a farm wife. Sewing has always been part of Raylene’s family. Normally Raylene will use her skills to make little things here and there for her kids, or curtains and cushion covers around her home. A couple of years ago Raylene made some buffalo check cardigans that she had extras of (figuring out sizing for her kids) and ended up selling A LOT. She still sells a few here and there. So, sewing has kind of been a little niche for Raylene to make a few extra dollars here and there.
Raylene started making masks at the beginning of COVID just so that her husband had a couple for work in case he needed them. Eventually as things got worse, Raylene made herself one so that she wouldn’t find herself not allowed into a store because she didn’t have one. Then a couple of people that knows that she sews asked her to make them some as they were more comfortable buying from someone they knew. So, Raylene posted to her personal Facebook profile and a few of her friends ordered. She had a lot of elastic and simply know that not everyone has the same sized face, so being able to adjust the fit made sense! Originally it was slipknots and as supplies started to become available again, she advanced to the toggles.
A lot of Raylene’s sales have been word of mouth support on her buy & sell ads. She has tweaked and changed her pattern to accommodate all of the issues people have had with other masks. There are so many people out there that dusted off a sewing machine and are selling masks at a premium price for a sub-par product, which frustrates Raylene especially when people are spending money on these masks and the seller won’t stand by their product. Raylene had to resort to ribbon for the ear loops for a while because that was all that was available. She had someone message her back asking her to swap the ribbon for the new elastics. Raylene’s answer: YES! Absolutely! Raylene did the best she could with what was available to her at the time, and now that she has a better, she is absolutely happy to upgrade her previous masks, because people paid good money, and jobs, and the economy aren’t great, and masks are needed everywhere. Raylene guarantees and stands by her product!
If you want to see more of Raylene’s creations, message her on Facebook.
My Thoughts: This mask is amazing. The fit is great and I love that it doesn’t sit right on your face, so when you’re breathing, it doesn’t seem to “attack” your face! These masks have nose wires so it helps secure the mask and prevent glasses from fogging, which is an added bonus for those of us that have to wear glasses. I also love the adjustable ear straps on these masks.