Make a no-sew face mask in five minutes with UAB Arts in Medicine

Make a no-sew face mask in five minutes with UAB Arts in Medicine
UAB's Lillis Taylor wears an effective face mask she made in minutes from a T-shirt. (UAB)

In just 5 minutes, you can make a face mask using a T-shirt and sharp scissors.

A T-shirt mask tutorial from Lillis Taylor, artist-in-residence with the Institute for Arts in Medicine at UAB, shows how to make a mask without sewing that properly covers the nose and mouth, including the chin. The tutorial includes a demonstration of best practices for removing the mask after use and for washing and drying it. The video is posted on the Alys Stephens Performing Arts Center’s YouTube page, along with other activities and lessons.

Masks or face coverings are required in all public places in Birmingham effective Friday, May 1. The Birmingham City Council on April 28 unanimously approved the ordinance requiring face coverings for all people age 2 and older.

To make your own, start with a T-shirt at least 18 inches long folded in half, or 36 inches long unfolded. Tools needed are sharp scissors, pen or marker, and a ruler. Hand-wash your T-shirt mask in hot, soapy water and line-dry it completely before using. Alternating between two masks is encouraged.

You can have fun making your mask.

“If you have a T-shirt with an awesome image that you would like to be on your mask, you can make one the way the video demonstrates and then use it as a template for other masks,” Taylor said.

Taylor also has a video tutorial for a hand-sewn face mask ties, with a time-saving hack: Leave the pleat step out and finish the mask as the video suggests. When you slide the T-shirt strings in, put a knot in each tie where it hangs out of the bottom so that it catches and will not move through the mask. When you tie the top ties together, it will create a natural gather with the same effect as a pleat.

This story originally appeared on the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s UAB News website.

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