icon Project Mask: Winston-Salem

Project Mask: Winston-Salem

Project Mask Winston-Salem FAQ

Project Mask WS Pattern

Locals are sewing masks for healthcare professionals in Winston-Salem. Would you like to help in some capacity? Read on!


*We have been deemed essential services and will continue on during the shelter in place. Keep calm and keep sewing!

Have questions? First, please read through this whole FAQ. Your answer is probably here! If you don’t find an answer to your question, you can email the organizers. Our emails are at the bottom of this document. 

*****First things first - If you know of healthcare providers in need who can use these, please ask them to complete this form

Yes, we have talked with multiple providers, hospital departments, and clinics who have looked at this pattern and said they can use these. We have literally 1000s of requests and more are coming every hour from birthing units, pediatrics, geriatrics, and more. 

Emergency Departments likely cannot use these masks, but others can, which means the disposable masks and N95 masks can be sent to the ED for use on the very front lines there. 

Here is a news article about fabric masks and how they can be used. “FDA approved but do not provide the higher protection that N95 ones do. According to the FDA, face masks provide protection from splashes and droplets but won’t stop small particles from coughs and sneezes the way the N95 face fitting respirators do." 

Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center released this information on March 27. Our pattern is one of the ones they recommend. 

Now, on to how you can get involved!

Who can help with this effort?

Literally anyone! Read below and fill out this form to get started. Here is the story from another state that got us thinking if we could do this here. Keep reading to see how you can pitch in. 

If you can sew, and would like to help, please do! Below are links to a video and pattern on how to make face masks for our local health providers. This is the pattern that we have shown to medical providers and this is the one that they have told us they can use. 

Update 3/24 - The FDA Is now recommending two layers of cotton instead of one cotton layer and one flannel layer. Please use what flannel you have left, and then transition to just cotton. 

Pattern - link is here 

Videos are here - helpful videos


If you know of healthcare providers in need who can use these, please ask them to complete this form

If you are in need of fabric, fill out this form, and we will do our best to get some fabric for you. As we are able, we are distributing supplies from Katie’s house near WFU off of Silas Creek Parkway (currently has elastic and cotton). We have it totally ready for pickup. No need to bring shears. We also have been in touch with the following fabric stores. If you are buying fabric, please consider supporting local. All three have websites for shopping and calling in orders.



If you can't sew but want to help, giving masks to our local health care providers, consider a financial donation. Your gift will be used to purchase fabric and elastic for the 1,000s of masks we are making.

*we do not charge for these masks so each donation is appreciated 

Donations are managed by Katie 

Paypal - ksonnenlee@gmail.com

Venmo - @kathryn-sonnen-lee

CashApp - $ksonnenlee

If you can’t sew, but you CAN cut fabric, cut away, and we can get it to someone to do the sewing! We need 6x9 rectangles of quilters cotton. 

If you have any questions, please keep reading! The goal is to get as many of these masks sewn and in the right hands. Still don’t see your question answered? Fill out this form and we will get back to you. 

If you have medical masks or N95 masks (often used in painting and construction), please get them to us by leaving them on our porch. Katie found some in their box of random hardware stuff! Providers on the front line are in desperate need. N95 masks must be unopened and in original packaging.

And yes, please share this info with others!! 

Sewing and Pattern

Before you start sewing, please watch these helpful videos from Marissa and Melissa that will get you started. 

Remember to:


  1. Wash your fabric (If the elastic is packaged, it does not need to be washed. If it’s been sitting in your sewing box for a while, then please wash!)
  2. Dry your fabric on HIGH for at least 30 minutes to kill virus/germs.
  3. Follow the pattern. Be sure to double-stitch the masks so they will hold up to multiple washings. 
  4. When your masks are done and ready for pickup, fill out this form and  Katie will contact you about pick up/drop off. 
    1. Drop Off Locations
      1. Katie’s house
      2. Cloverdale Ace Hardware
        1. 2287 Cloverdale Ave, Winston-Salem
        2. They will have a labeled box near the cashier. 
        3. Drop before 5pm daily 
      3. Robinhood Ace Hardware
        1. 3450 Robinhood Road
        2. Drop off before 5pm daily


What if I run out of or don't have elastic?

If you are an experienced sewer, you can create fabric string, similar to bias tape and attach that to the corner so that the straps can be tied around the head instead of going around the ears.

If you have a serger, you can easily create a strap by folding a piece fabric in half and serging the cut side.  

Melissa created a handy video to show you how to do masks with ties instead of elastic. When you wash these, please use a laundry bag or pillow case to reduce tangling!

Can I use a different pattern? I’ve seen/heard about other patterns.

We recommend this pattern because it’s the one we have discussed with healthcare providers and they have requested. We know this one is helpful. 

If you want to make another pattern, go for it, but we can only provide materials and answer sewing questions about this pattern

Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center released this information on March 27. Our pattern is one of the ones they recommend. 

Is someone washing the fabric before we pick up? What about finished masks?

YES! Melissa and Katie are cleaning the materials before volunteers pickup. When completed masks are dropped off, we will clean again before getting the masks to the providers. 

Organizers and Contact Information
Katie Sonnen-Lee ksonnenlee@gmail.com - email Katie if you need/have materials, need/have completed masks, or want to donate and help in another way. ***

Melissa Vickers - melissavickers2010@yahoo.com -  email Melissa with sewing questions

Marissa Joyce - marissa.joyce@gmail.com email Marissa with sewing questions

Facebook Group -  Visit it and join the group here.

***If you have contacted us and haven’t heard back within 24 hours, please email Katie (me) again. I’m working a full-time job from home, taking care of and (trying to) educate two kids at home, and doing this project. Please help me keep organized and send me another email. Thank you!

Fun Stuff - Read more about our project from these local news sites! 

WFMY  2 News - “Triad women put sewing tallents to work by making medical masks”

Yes Weekly - “Local women band together to unite local sewists to make medical masks

WXII 12 News - “Triad crafters helping medical care providers by stitching homemade masks in wake of shortages”

Winston-Salem Chronicle - “Local women work to unite local sewers to make medical masks

Winston-Salem Journal - “Making Masks: Community comes together to help flatten the curve”es”


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