Surgical Mask with Filter Pocket and Nose Adjustment

This is a tutorial on the best fitting face mask yet – the surgical mask with nose adjustment. Its top edge is reinforced with wire which allows you to adjust the mask to your nose so the mask will stay in place on your nose. The mask has tunnels for an elastic band that holds it behind your ears and a filter pocket in case you want to insert any kind of a filter.

To make this mask you’ll need a pattern which you can download here. I’ve drawn two sizes – adult and child. The adult pattern is quite large, I feel very comfortable in it but it’s very easy to adjust in case you need it bigger or smaller. When you print, don’t forget to uncheck the “Adjust to page” box.




  • pattern – download here
  • 100% cotton fabric – you will need 3 layers (outside, inside, pocket): I found some great designs for the outside layer here and I like to use plain white like this one for the inside layer and the pocket
  • elastic band, width 0,5 cm – 50 cm is enough even with a reserve for mistakes
  • sewing machine
  • matching thread
  • scissors
  • pins
  • wire – I like to use thin wire – 1 mm thick, however, you can use a thicker one, just make sure you can shape it with your fingers
  • wire pliers – round and for cutting
  • safety pin

How to Make the Surgical Mask

Print the pattern and cut it out – add 0,5 cm for seam allowance. The seam allowance of 0,5 cm is included, however, the mask is pretty large and you can make the seam allowance up to 1 cm. The pattern is half of the mask, so you need to fold your fabric and place the pattern on the fold where indicated.

Cut 3 same parts – one for the outside, one for the inside and one for the pocket.


Fold each piece in half right side inside and stitch where indicated by the blue line.

When you open the pieces, they should look like this.

Close the piece that will be the pocket and cut off about 2,5 cm on the short edges.

Fold the short edges about 0,5 cm and stitch.

Place the inside layer of the mask right side up and place the pocket on it also right side up and pin well. Make sure the centers are aligned.

Place the outside layer on top of it wrong side up and pin again.

Stitch 0,5 cm around the edges, leave one short side open (blue line).

Turn the mask right side out through this opening.

Stitch 0,5 cm from the upper and lower edge (long sides). This will create a tunnel for the wire.

Fold the stitched short edge about 1 cm and stitch – this will create a tunnel for the elastic.

Next, take the wire and make a round loop at one end. This will prevent the wire from making a hole in your fabric.

Insert the wire in the tunnel in one of the long sides. Push the wire in until you feel it has reached the other side of the mask.

Then bend the wire where the pocket is attached.

Pull the wire out until you see the bent point.

Cut the wire where it bends and make a loop.

Push the wire back in.

Now is the time to fold the open short edge in and stitch. If you did everything right, the wire ends where the pocket starts and folding the short edge will keep the wire in place.

Attach the safety pin to the elastic band and pull it through the tunnels on the short sides.

Make a knot binding the ends of the elastic together and then put on the mask on your face and the elastic behind your ears to see if it fits. If it doesn’t, adjust the knot. You can leave it like this and use the mask with these knots.

Or you can cut the elastic right below the knot and sew the ends together.


Your surgical mask with nose adjustment is done. When you put it on, try to shape the wire to fit your nose.