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Face Mask Patterns

Many projects to make face masks are underway nationwide. As a result, there are a large number of patterns available. In consultation with local healthcare providers, we settled on the two styles of face masks shown below.

Best Practices for Making Face Masks

No matter which style of mask you choose to make, be sure to follow these guidelines:

  • Prewash all fabrics in HOT water and then dry them on HOT before assembling your masks. This will keep them from shrinking when laundered by hospitals or other facilities.

  • Please ensure that all supplies are stored and masks are made in a smoke-free environment and that no one in the household has been exposed to COVID-19

  • Use new, high thread count, cotton fabric. High quality fabric designed for quilts a good choice. Thinner fabric will not provide sufficient filtering and will not hold up to the frequent laundering that these mask will undergo.

  • Be careful when using a hot iron around elastic and interfacing. We've experienced some melting problems with some of each product. Test your materials with your iron before you get too far into the project.



The Olson Mask, developed by UnityPoint in Cedar Rapids, is designed to be worn over an N95 filter mask, but it also has a pocket into which a filter can be inserted if an N95 is not available.


This is the mask requested locally by Mercy Hospital Iowa City. The University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics is now asking for both the Olson and pleated style masks and provides their own versions of both. See the Ongoing Needs page for more information on items requested items by all three hospitals.

Olson Masks

Download Pattern for the Olson Mask

Download Guidance for making the Olson Mask

Olson Mask Instructional Video

Pleated Masks


The Pleated Mask is for general use by individuals. The 20 nursing homes and long-term care facilities have each received 100 of these masks and most of the other organizations also requested pleated.

Original Pattern for Pleated Mask


Download Pattern for the Original Pleated Mask
(updated 04/17/2020)

Download Guidance for making the Pleated Mask

Pleated Mask Video Tutorial by Erica Arndt 


There are now hundreds of patterns (many on YouTube) and tools available for making face masks, and we've continued to experiment in our efforts to improve both fit and ease of production. Here are some of our favorites:

Creative Grids Face Mask Template. A non-slip acrylic template that allows you to cut four layers of fabric using a rotary cutter. Three sizes of masks. Very efficient method for inserting elastic. Available in local quilt shops, Missouri Star, and on Amazon.

Pleated Face Mask with Adjustable Wire and Filter Pocket

Face Mask with Pop-up Nose Covering, eliminates fog on glasses

3D Fitted Face Mask, great fit along sides, quick to cut and sew, adult and child sizes

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