Hoo-RAE!: Sew it begins


Photo by Rhonda Kalama

I sewed my first face mask! It’s not perfect, but I’m almost there!

By Lauren Kalama, staff writer

By now, we have all seen the craze about masks, whether it be making, purchasing, or wearing them. Recently, the people of Maui have been advised by Mayor Michael Victorino, to wear masks as much as possible in order to protect themselves and others. Since I didn’t have a mask this meant that I had to whip out my sewing machine and start right now!

Hearing this, my mother and I made the time to sew a couple for our family and friends, and can I just say how I missed sewing so much! Due to academics and extracurricular activities, I hadn’t really had time this year to sit down and sew, but making masks made me so excited because I got back into something I love doing.

After seeing some templates, we combined our sewing knowledge and examples online to create and find the right fit for masks that worked for us. Here is how my mom and I made our masks:


  • Sewing machine
  • Scissors
  • 2 – 9″x 6″ pieces of fabric
  • 2 – 7″ pieces of elastic
  • Thread
  • Needles/Pins
  • Iron (optional)


  • Cut out two 9″x 6″ pieces of fabric and two 6″-7″ pieces of elastic.
  • Place both pieces on top of each other with designs facing inwards.
  • Pin elastics from top corner to bottom corner on each side, in between the two pieces of fabric.
  • Before you sew, make sure to leave about an inch open on one side of the fabric, in order to flip it inside out.
  • Sew around the fabric leaving about a quarter inch seam.
  • Flip the fabric inside out and iron.
  • Fold the fabric over itself evenly two times creating two creases and iron. Try to make the edges straight when folding.
  • Pin the folds down on each side.
  • Sew on both sides, leaving about a quarter-inch seam.

And there you have it, your very own mask!

The main reason we wanted to make some masks, was for my grandparents and also for my dad, who continues to work during this time. We only made a few but are planning to make more as we come to the end of this week. It’s been keeping me busy in my free time in between distance learning, but I’m just so thankful that I’m sewing again!

At first, I was a little rusty, but I quickly got the hang of it. I sewed a basic face mask, but I will be working on different styles very soon. I hope to make more to give to others. With my sewing machine set up, I will also be making scrunchies and other creations as sewing is a part of my senior project.

Through this activity, I was reminded of patience and motivation because in a time like this, I think it’s important to continue to push forward, but also to wait for what’s to come. I’ve realized that life is too short and that we have to make the best out of our situation and create our own new normal.

As we come to the end of another week, continue to keep moving forward and keep staying positive by safely getting back to doing something that inspires you!