This one is too big. That one is too small. This one is too scratchy. That one is too thin. I’m starting to feel like there should be a new addition to the “That’s not my…” book series for babies. In case you don’t know them, each page of these books says “That’s not my [whatever the thing is], it’s too [insert texture here]” and part of the illustration is made of a corresponding material. Like this:
“That’s not my dragon! Its ears are too tufty.” (Ears are made of long-haired minky fabric.)
“That’s not my tractor! Its funnel is too smooth.” (Funnel is made of black vinyl.)
“That’s not my blanket! Its edge is too shiny.” (Edge is shiny satin ribbon.)
And at the end of each book: “That’s my [thing]! Its [part] is soooo [adjective]!”
So what addition am I proposing? I think it’s high time toddlers had a book like That’s not my mask… Its ear loops are too stretchy. I’ve even done the cover design for them. See?
Well, this was the most time-consuming intro to a blog post that I’ve ever done. I hope you people appreciate the forty-five minutes of design work (and nabbing free clipart) that this image represents!
Even though I made some cloth masks way back in March, we haven’t been completely happy with them. They fog up our glasses, for starters. We also only had one mask per person, which was fine when we weren’t leaving the house more than once a week. At this point I think we need more, which is why yesterday I ordered several different shapes and sizes of masks.
They arrived at my door this afternoon and I eagerly tore into the box. K and I tried on every one of the masks, both child size and adult. And you know what?
They all still fogged up my glasses. And some of the ear loops hurt my ears. A couple of them were too close to my mouth when I breathed, and the fabrics were all either ugly or boring. None of them was my mask. To add insult to injury, masks are non-returnable (understandable, but still…) and so now I have 5 different types of masks I won’t wear. Do I have to make my own once again?
Look, I don’t have the patience to create a mask from scratch right now. I have other things to do, like cutting the shape of each continent out in a different colour of cardstock for E’s schoolwork. So I started fiddling with the masks I just bought to see if I couldn’t alter one of them slightly to suit me.
In the end I decided the fogging problem had a simple solution: the top of the mask needed to be contoured to match the shape of my face exactly. Never mind an adjustable nose piece; I needed an adjustable top edge. The whole top edge.
Down to the makery I went. I don’t really stock a lot of wire around here, but K recently opened a bent-wire jewellry-making kit (and didn’t clean it up!), so I was able to nab a length of wire from that. Then I cut the wire to fit the mask, slit open one end of the top hem, and fed my wire through the slit until it was all inside the mask. It worked… but I was getting a headache from the pressure of the ear loops on my glasses frames.
Back to the makery. I could try to connect the two ear loops behind my head somehow; and as any parent of tweens knows, to connect two stretchy bands to each other you need a rainbow loom S-clip. I raided the girls’ rainbow loom kit and found the necessary hardware. After some trial and error, I found that not only did putting the strap just at the base of my skull solve the headache problem, it also further improved the fogging situation by pulling the sides of the mask downward, eliminating all gaps at the top.
That’s my mask! Its extra-long adjustable nosepiece is so bendy!
I’m telling you, Usborne could sell a lot of copies of this book. I’ll just sit right here and wait for the royalty cheques to come in.