Happy Earth Day, party people!
I know, this title feels a little deja vu, eh? I mean, I just did a dress refashion with a repurposed cloth face mask collar.
But what can I say? I’m on a tear.
I’ve been sincerely stressed out about what’s going to happen to all of these fabric face masks when we no longer need them anymore.
I mean, sure…I’ll probably keep a couple for flu season and maybe to put on mid-flight the second someone starts coughing, but what about the rest?
It’s not even just about millions of masks going into the landfill. A lot of these masks were made for us by friends or family members during a really scary time to help keep us safe. All around the world, crafters and sewists came together in one of the purest acts of love I’ve ever seen. It would make me sad to just toss mine out.
Rest assured, this repurposed face mask collar is not only different from my previous version, but I think it’s prettier and more refined too!
Now, Let’s repurpose a cloth face mask into a cute & classy collar!
Because…Earth Day! *We are the World starts to play in the background*
I began with this lovely cloth face mask that was gifted to me by a friend while I was struggling through treatment for ovarian cancer.
I snipped off those elastic sides, pulling the elastic taut as I did so.
Then, I unpicked the middle pleat with my seam ripper.
Here’s what it looked like when I was done:
In my previous collar refashion, I unpicked all of the pleating and ended up with a flat collar. We’re changing it up this time to get a more three dimensional result!
Now to remove that metal nosepiece! I unpicked the top of my mask…
…and pulled it out!
Then, I clipped the raw edges back together and stitched them back down.
Note: If you’re trying this at home, you’ll want to make sure you’re using a heavy-duty/jeans needle as this project involves sewing through a lot of thick (thiccc?) fabric.
In my last collar refashion, I just snipped off a little of the backing fabric and pulled the nosepiece out with pliers. This is a much better way to go about it and honestly takes about the same amount of time, as pulling out the nosepiece from one end is pretty difficult.
Plus, this way looks way nicer (even if no one is going to ever see the underside of your collar).
I folded my mask in two lengthwise and pressed it down.
Then, I cut along the pressed line.
These are the two pieces that will make each side of my new collar!
In my previous collar refashion, I just cut down the middle with pinking shears. You can do that here as well, but at Refashionista headquarters, we’re classy now. It’s our new thing. No one will see the inside of your collar except you, but why not take a couple of extra steps to make it look nice?
I grabbed a roll of bias tape…
…and clipped it to the raw edges of my mask halves with my sewing clips!
Then, I stitched it down.
So…I have this perfectly nice, but kind of dull black fit & flair dress I thrifted ages ago (It’s what I’m wearing in the first pic of this post).
It fits fine, but I think it could use a little pizzazz, don’t you?
I folded the front of my dress in two and marked the center with tailor’s chalk.
Next, I pinned one side of my collar inside, using that center mark as a guide.
You can see how I adjusted it so the front would be much wider than the back.
After each side was pinned (and measured to make sure they were even), I stitched each side of my new collar in place.
I folded my collar over and discovered I needed to tack the back parts down, which I did.
Just look at my formerly-basic, now-anything-but-basic black dress now!
I absolutely LOVE this, you guys!
I styled my newly-collared dress with black sandals and a big ‘ol bandaid on my knee from a recent fall (owie!).
I love how I was able to work with the existing pleating on the original mask to get a polished and vintage-inspired (I’m thinking ’60s?) final look!
I really hope this project inspires you to look at your old cloth face masks in a new way!
- If you like this repurpose project, you might enjoy looking at my previous cloth face mask to collar refashion.
- You should also head over to my buddy Sara’s blog, Sadie Seasongoods, and check out the clever ways she’s repurposed these cloth masks:
If you like my blog, you’ll probably like hers too! She does for unwanted thrift store odds & ends what I do for unwanted thrift store clothes!