Monday, May 25, 2020

Mask-Making Guilt and Mother's Day



 Just as I was getting into my whole one-handed, broken-waisted rhythm of physical therapy and figuring out what sewing tasks I could do, the Covid-19 virus hit.  "Lockdown" started March 21.  And cottage-industries of mask-making began.  If there is one glittering generality about quilters  it is that they are very quick to respond to a need they can fulfill.

The Internet was immediately full of mask patterns.  Some of my Quilty friends have made hundreds.  HUNDREDS!
I had elastic, I had fabric, and I could handle a rotary cutter with my left hand (well, I am left-handed...).  So I tried making masks.


 And I could sort of do it.  But it hurt and took me all morning to make one. Kind of like trying to find an iron that is the hottest and steamiest, I was looking for mask patterns that were easier than the one I am wearing here.



I did find ones that were easier to cut.  But then they had to be pleated, a manipulation that was almost beyond me.






Like so many others, I ran out of elastic. Everything was on backorder.  So I found and tried this pattern.  It was fairly easy.
Here my friend Cecilia models hers.  But personally, I don't like to tie things behind my head - it's a hair thing.

My shipment of elastic came in just as I realized that mask-making just wasn't something I could do.  And of course I felt a bit guilty,

But then something happened to assuage my guilt.



About this time my friend Jenny and I were out walking, with our masks on, when she mentioned she was thinking about a sewing machine so that she could make masks but the time just wasn't right to buy one. I offered her the most reliable and lendable machine I have - my mom's 1948 Singer Featherweight.  I also sent over fabrics I new I would never us.    And Jenny has gone to town making masks. She is one of the 400+ makers. I loaned her a second machine, a White/Singer that John's mom bought for me in 1982. A friend of the family's is working with Jenny making masks. They have even made masks for children!  Here's Jenny's grandson modeling his.






Normally I spend Mother's Day sewing on  my mom's Featherweight.  This year my mom, and John's as well, spent the day in the most noble of  company.

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