Face Mask Filter Information
Polyester Hydro Knit Shop Towels
When I started making masks for friends and family, I realized that a more effective filter material and shape wasn't readily available to the general public. After weeks of online research and countless prototypes in my studio - I developed an easily repeatable filter pattern for pleated surgical masks. Combining this pattern with Polyester Hydro Knit shop towels is one of the most effective particle blocking options the general public has. Shop towel masks filtered out 70-95% of particles, compared with 20 - 60% using cotton fabrics.
Unlike other mass-produced filters or basic rectangles, the LBCV-19 filter covers both the nose and mouth while conforming to the contours of your face.
A mask with filter should be snug, covering the bridge of the nose to below the chin.
Dr. Peter Tsai of the University of Tennessee recommends car shop towels, which are a strong, tightly woven fabric. Dr. Tsai, who invented the technology that makes the filter media of the N95 face masks. Tsai works at the University of Tennessee.
Some Los Angeles clothing makers found that they could drastically increase the effectiveness of masks made out of cotton fabric by tucking two blue “shop towels” into them and making sure they fit tightly. Although they weren’t scientists, the clothing makers built a testing facility and found that their improvised shop towel masks filtered up to 95 percent of particles, compared with 20 to 60 percent using cotton fabrics they tested, according to Business Insider.
Lindsay Medoff, the CEO of Suay Sew Shop. says that after testing blue shop towels in homemade masks with the PortaCount Pro that measures particles ranging from .02-1 um, they're two to three times better than cotton at effective particle blocking. Read their research here.
Yang Wang, an assistant professor at the Missouri University of Science and Technology also researched the effectiveness of different materials at blocking particles. These were his findings:
Cotton bandanas performed the worst -- shielding the wearers from only about 18 percent of particles when folded into two layers. Four layers of fabric = 19.5 percent blocked.
A scarf would have to be quite thick to do much good. Two layers of a chunky, wool scarf filtered out 21 percent of particles. When it was folded into four layers, its performance jumped to 49 percent.
Instructions on how to cut your own LBCV-19 Filter at home will be available soon!
Pre-cut filters are available at my Etsy store and can be copied for personal use.
For the rights to production usage please contact me.
DISCLAIMER: I cannot guarantee these filtration percentages as they rely on the user to adjust fit and seal. I am not an expert in the field of masks or filtration, I'm trying my best to make something that I believe will help when the correct PPE is unavailable. I'm making this pattern available in order to contribute to the public good. I don’t want to be sued because of it. By accessing and/or using this website/store and the content it contains, you agree to the following terms: Alinea Atelier LLC disclaims all express and implied warranties related to this mask & filter pattern, including but not limited to its effectiveness or safety, to the fullest extent permitted by law, including but not limited to any implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. Further, you fully and forever release and discharge Alinea Atelier LLC and its respective affiliates, directors, officers, shareholders, employees, agents, and insurers, and all others involved in the creation of this pattern (collectively referred to as "Alinea Atelier") from any and all injuries (including death), losses, damages, claims (including negligence claims), demands, lawsuits, expenses, and any other liability of any kind, of or to you, your property, or any other person, directly or indirectly arising out of or in connection with your use of this pattern, even if it is due to the negligence, injudicious act, omission, or other fault of Alinea Atelier. You waive any and all claims against Alinea Atelier, of any kind arising out of or attributable to the mask and filter pattern, including those claims that may be unknown to you, or which you do not suspect to exist at this time.
Face Mask & Filter Care Instructions
For Alinea Atelier Purchased Items:
Wear your mask with the double layered filter at all times while outside
Fit the nose wire firmly against your nose and over your cheeks
Secure lower pleat under your chin
Don’t touch your face while wearing your mask again
Carefully remove your mask when you get home, wash immediately including your hands
Sanitize after every use
Optional add laundry boosting color-safe bleach, or OxiClean
Do not boil or microwave your masks or filters
Store clean mask and filters in a closed plastic container or a new zip-close bag by itself - label for each individual if needed
Polyester hydro knit shop towels are designed to be a disposable, semi-reusable cleaning item.
Although stronger than paper towels, it is weaker than cotton fabric and will deteriorate with use and washing.
How quickly it deteriorates is untested and unknown
It has not been approved as a face mask filter material
It's effectiveness as a face mask filter alternative after being used and or laundered in unknown
Your use of this pattern and material is voluntary. If you use it, you do so at your own risk.
• Wash mask & filters once received
• Wash mask & filters after every use
• Do not share mask or filters with others
• Remove filter from mask when washing
• Filter effectiveness after washing is unknown
CARE INSTRUCTIONS FOR MASK & FILTERS
1. Handwash HOT with detergent 2+ mins
2. Rinse thoroughly
3. Lay flat to dry • in the sun if possible
2nd Best Option:
1. Machine Wash WARM Gentle Cycle alone
2. Dryer HOT
• Iron mask & filter : polyester setting if desired
• Insert folded filter’s pointed end to chin point
• Insure filter’s folded edge is flush below nose wire
• Replace filter when worn thin or damaged
Mask: 100% Cotton
Filter: 100% Polyester Hydro Knit
Purchase Replacement Filters:
Elastic Alternative Tutorial
Covid-19 Face Mask Cords
Like so many other designers and home sewers heeding the call for masks, I've been unable to find elastic. By sheer luck I stumbled upon a perfect alternative while digging through my previous sewing projects. Plus it doesn't require any sewing, just a sturdy ruler and rotary cutter!
Please share my tutorial with the sewing community - we're all in this together!
90% Polyester, 10% Spandex
Swim suit liner performancewear is an excellent, in-stock alternative to elastic for face masks. The edges don't fray, it's extremely strong when stretched, can be laundered and very soft for all day wear. Other fabrics have similar characteristics, this is just what I had on hand. I found 3/4" strips creates the perfect 3/8" elastic cord.
1 60" wide yard = Roughly 3,200 inches of cord!
Spandex Warehouse Listing HERE
Fabric.com Listing HERE
Mood Fabrics Listing HERE *fabric content not listed
Please only purchase what you're expecting to use!
4. Once you're done cutting the strips, pull them apart gently. Clip any bits the rotary cutter may have missed.
5. With both hands, hold and pull each strip apart as far as it can go.
6. Pull and stretch all the strips you cut. The fabric will automatically roll its edges into the center creating a soft and stretchable cord.
1. I started by keeping the fabric folded once, selvages together to one side.
2. Using a rotary cutter, cut 3/4" strips along the edge of your ruler. (A clear ruler is perfect) Hold the ruler firmly still while cutting.
3. Don't move or lift any strips until you're complete with several or have to move the whole fabric. If the rotary cutter missed spots it will shift the layers.
Examples of different strip widths:
I feel the most comfortable cords are from 3/4" size strips.
1 1/2" Strip = 1/4" Cord
3/4" Strip = 3/8" Cord
3/8" Strip = 1/8" Cord
Depending on fabric content and thickness, the strips will increase in length once stretched and rolled.
The rolled cords have almost the exact stretch as braided1/4" elastic.
7. Cut the cords to whatever lengths you need.
8. Knot the ends if left loose.
9. ALL DONE
I hope this was helpful for you!
Please keep in touch with me on IG @laurenbrucelund and tag your projects!
I'll be offering face masks for
sale and donation soon!