Britt Hill and Ellie Wheeler

Arkansas Times sent out a mask ask. You responded. 

In early April, the COVID-19 conversation made its way into the sewing room, when Arkansas Department of Health Director Dr. Nate Smith showed up at the state’s daily coronavirus briefing sporting a face mask his wife made for him. Governor Hutchinson soon appeared in mask, too — first, a sunny yellow beach print that alternated flip flops with vintage sunglasses, then a cozy gray and white plaid number.


Messaging about wearing masks to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 had been inconsistent in the month of March, but by the time the first April showers fell on Arkansas, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was recommending their use “in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies) especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.” Advertisements for anti-microbial masks popped up overnight. People took selfies in makeshift face shields fashioned from Instant Pot lids. A run on Amazon’s supply of elastic ensued, as did a host of conversations about how systemic racism imposes an entirely new set of risks for people of color wearing masks. The Arkansas Times asked to see your masks, and here’s what you came up with.

Don’t have one yet? Need a pattern? Try the CDC’s fabric pattern or one of its two no-sew options.