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Scrub Caps

Recently, I was approached by Nurse J, to see if I could make her some scrub caps. We had connected last year, when I was making headbands for medical personnel & I made her a pile for CHEO to share with her colleagues. Now, with COVID patients being shipped around the province (Ontario), including adults going to CHEO, she was looking for some scrub caps to protect her hair.

I decided to incorporate the kidlets into the process, just as I did with the hundreds of headbands made last year. They researched different patterns that they could find online (I already had a pattern, but I wanted them to understand the research process), then they picked out some fabrics, which were then ironed, cut & assembled.

My oldest still boasts about how he is an expert in sewing buttons, because of all the headbands they helped with last year, and really enjoyed attaching more to these caps too. I’ve loved seeing their confidence grow with each project we do together, so really appreciated working on these with them.

Here are the scrub caps we made, what do you think?

Hopefully, the scrub caps, we’ve made, bring some joy not only to Nurse J, but to everyone who see’s them. I can’t even begin to image how hard it is at the moment, to be amongst it all.

Bag with lavender sachets made by the kidlets

I am a strong believer that the little things in life count & that doing things for others, brings happiness. Whilst, it would be lovely not to be re-enforcing those values in the current state of the world. It would also be remiss, not to. NOW, more than ever, I want my kids to understand the value in the little things. Every action, after all, has an equal & opposite reaction, even if they don’t notice it immediately.



In this line of thinking, as a little added surprise, the kidlets made some little lavender sachets (we confirmed Nurse J likes lavender) on their own & my youngest decorated a little bag to put it all into. A little parcel of joy đŸ™‚


Be the change you wish to see in the world – Mahatma Gandhi

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Non Medical Grade Masks

A few people have send enquires as to whether I am still making non medical grade face masks, (amongst other things), mostly I think due in part to the lack of posts for long periods, sorry about that.

I am still making them, but the posts about masks have waned as I grew a little tired of posting “another mask made”. I am well aware that not everyone wants to see masks and have a constant reminder that this has been our life for over a year now.

For those unaware, here is a little bit about the non medical grade masks that I make.

They are made with 4 layers;
2 x 100% cotton
2x non woven interfacing (also called polypropylene by some, I just call it interfacing)
Note: the interfacing is between the layers of cotton

They also have;
Polyester Elastic (same elastic used for disposable masks for hospitals, so softer than most)
Cotton loops for the elastic to thread through
Wire (with a plastic coating on it to reduce wear & tear on the mask) for over the nose

The design for the masks, is a combination of several ideas that I liked, when I was researching “best fit” overall. I realize that the style/ sizing might not work for everyone, but with various sizes available & the design features incorporated, I have had a large number of repeat customers, who are adamant that it’s the most comfortable mask they’re found. It’s a nice piece of feedback, because I played with so many design ideas, before settling on this one & I know that for us, it has been the best fit too.

Some of the design features that I think make it stand out for improved fit are;
Wire over the nose – ensures less gaps
Darts at the sides – snug fit at the sides
Loops for elastic – more flexibility in terms of fit & ease of adjustment/ adding more once elastic wears out.

Being immunocompromised, I went with 2 layers of non-woven interfacing from the start, as a filter of sorts, because it was the safest option I could offer. I started making masks a little later than most, because of all the research I did, but it was around the time when people were cutting up furnace filters and adding all sorts of weird things into their masks to work as a filter themselves.

The non woven interfacing or polypropylene works as a filter of sorts because unlike cotton which is woven, (so therefore has gaps), a nonwoven material makes it harder for some particles to get through. Is it medical grade filtration? No, but it will give you more protection than a simple two layer (non medical grade) cotton mask does.

If you are washing in a washing machine, I suggest cold to warm wash to ensure a longer life & line dry, as opposed to popping them in the dryer. A delicates bag when washing can help to prevent the elastic from prematurely wearing out, which is good use for any mask type you might have, especially if it’s sewn in, as some mask designs have, when you would likely just toss the mask.

I supply a decent length of elastic with each, usually enough to go over the ears, but I can also supply extra if you wish to secure it around your head instead. I also generally supply a little extra in the event that something happens & you need to swap out the elastic at the last minute. Some actually prefer ties, as you can get an even tighter fit (shoelaces are actually great ties). Personally, my family all prefer over the ears, as it’s easy to flick them off & into a bag for dirty masks, to be cleaned later.

Be sure to remember to cut up all elastic when it has reached end of life, as it can still pose a risk to wildlife.

Please note: ALL my non medical grade masks, are not a failsafe & users should still exercise caution when in close proximity & practice distancing, handwashing & other precautions as well.

I mostly do masks, as custom order requests, but from time to time you will see them pop up on my site or via social media

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Headbands for Masks

A few weeks ago I decided to make a couple of headbands for friends in the medical field, one works within a hospital, the other is a nurse in a long term care home. Little did I know that a simple post would be met with such huge demand on my Facebook page . So far, I estimate that I’ve donated at least 200 headbands. It’s an achievement that I owe to both family & friends. My kidlets helped in some of the assembly & many friends have helped out with buttons & elastic & even some funds to help cover some costs, as I used up a great deal of my own personal stash of buttons, elastic, cotton material & interfacing throughout the whole process. I am currently awaiting another (rather expensive) order of elastic in the post.


The order of 60 headbands for a department at CHEO  (pictured above) was one that I was especially proud to have had enough materials to supply.

For those that are interested in the pattern that I used, it can be found here on Happy Together By Jess, she has since edited her post to add information about buttons but it wasn’t at that stage when I borrowed the pattern.

I have a tendency NOT to read instructions & make it up as I go. If you are looking to make some, here are my own comments, after I finally read through the pattern instructions;

After some trial & error on button placement, as well as some feedback from those actually using them, I wouldn’t suggest having them where Jess suggests. I measured 1.5″ up & then sewed the buttons on from there. The buttons should not be less than 1.5 cm in diameter, larger is obviously better.

I would also highly recommend using interfacing to reinforce the headbands which will increase their longevity & is especially important when sewing buttons onto the headbands. A normal headband perhaps wouldn’t require so much stability (there is no mention of it in the original pattern).

The 3/4″ elastic was much easier to add in, than the 1″, but either work fine. A normal headband wouldn’t require so much stability. I didn’t encase the elastic, as it just seemed  superfluous to the whole project.

If you are buying elastic, you want to get the highest quality possible, tightly woven. I know it’s in short supply though currently, so that might not be possible. 

Feedback so far has been amazing for these, with many of pictures of smiling faces being shared & confirmation that they hold up well to being washed at high temperatures.