Batik Blackout Eye Mask (PDF Pattern & Text Tutorial Added!)

(Pattern PDF Link and Mini-Tutorial Added after post text)

I’ve been remiss in posting things, as I haven’t made as much recently, but then also was feeling lazy about taking progress photos and feeling guilty that things wouldn’t be as tutorial-y as I usually like to make them. Buuut then I realized I missed participating here, and figured some photos were better than none! :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

While our bedroom has excellent blackout curtains, often hotels and such don’t really or sometimes my husband will want to read on his phone after I’m ready to be lights-out, so I wanted a new sleep mask. Somehow I misplaced the last one I sewed, which I made off a hand-drawn pattern traced from an ooooold mask I got on Quantas Air back in like 2000. It is in tatters, but was the best fitting sleep mask I’ve ever owned. It had this cool little nose-flap piece that helps block out extra light!

I decided this time that I wanted the mask portion to be a little bit larger, so I added ~1/4” all the way around, which turned out to be perfect. This pattern has no turning. I used one layer of a cotton batik fabric I’ve had in my stash for a few years, plus two additional layers of very tightly woven cotton cut from a college pillowcase. I layered them in various test quantities with other fabrics, and it turned out those three layers were all I needed to make things completely stare-directly-at-a-lightbulb-and-see-nothing dark. All the fabrics were pre-washed/dried.

I sewed the layers together super close to the fabric edge, then added the 3D nose piece.

Normally I hate pinning, but definitely needed it here! :laughing:

I used a previously cut length of soft Jersey knit to bias-bind the raw edges. I also used a thin jersey tubing to make the ear loops (bought from a mask making supplier on Etsy during the pandemic!); I love using ear loops on sleep masks, because they don’t slide off my head. If I use around-the-head straps, they either tangle in my hair or just pop right off, but these are very comfortable and secure. I choose to hand sew the straps to the outside of the masks I make, because I find the straps usually stretch over time and need to be replaced; this means I don’t have to cut them out of the seam/binding.

And here we are! Happy sleep times! :sleeping::sleeping_bed::heart:

NEW Pattern & Tutorial

Here is the PDF for the Blackout Eye Mask!

To print it, set your PDF to print at “Actual Size” and the page orientation to “Landscape.” Be aware that I’m in the US, so I have the size coming from an 8.5" by 11" Letter Size scan, but these settings should prevent distortion. Would love a tester using A5 or other paper to print! Also, I included a 1" box for scale to check your printout.

All seam allowances will end up being 1/4" at the end of the project, but I worked my way up to that at each stage.

  1. Starting with completely pre-washed and dried fabrics, test out your Outer Fabric (anything pretty, but I recommend using a similar fiber content to the rest to prevent uneven shrinkage with washing the completed project when it gets dirty/sweaty with use), Inner Fabric (something soft against your skin), and your Lining Fabric (whatever you have chosen to prevent light seeping through) by holding them all together and putting them over your eyes while looking directly at a light source. Adjust the number of Lining layers until you are satisfied with the level of light blockage.

My first mask made with the earlier, smaller incarnation of this pattern used an Outer and Inner made of soft flannel, and two Lining pieces made from thicker muslin. The version in this post used only a cotton batik Outer with an Inner piece and single Lining piece made out of the same pillowcase cotton. The weave was so tight it blocked light completely. I made the nose piece out of the same purple pillowcase rather than the batik because it was softer against my face.

  1. Once all your layers are planned, cut them all out using the Main Mask Piece, and then cut the additional single Nose Piece on the fold of whichever fabric you prefer.

To be sure your pattern pieces are the correct size, the 1" cube (yes, I know it’s actually a square, but I had D&D and Gelatinous Cubes in my brain while I was pattern making!) should measure exactly one inch on the outside edges of the black outline, and when you cut out the paper pieces, make sure not to cut off any of the black outline! It is meant to be included as a sizing guide.

  1. Sew all your mask pieces together in a sandwich (there is no turning out in this pattern, due to the binding at the end), making sure that your Outside fabric and your Inner fabric are both facing outward when directly viewed. I sewed mine together with ~1/8 inch seam allowance to start, to substitute for basting. I also used a fairly short stitch, since I wanted everything secure. (Gonna be honest, I was also too lazy to change thread throughout this project, since getting it done was more important than having it be perfect-looking, but matching your threads to your fabrics is recommended if you want a cleaner finish! :joy:)

  2. Find the center point of both the CURVED edge of the folded nose piece (with the fabric’s pretty side facing out) and the bottom edge of the mask piece (this is shown in one of my photos), and pin them together there. Then, pin the absolute dickens out of the nose piece, laying it against the mask edge from the center out in first one direction and then the other. Sew them together using a ~1/8" seam allowance and small stitches. Double check that all layers have been sewn, and go back over any places you missed. I didn’t do this on my first mask, and it has frayed in a few places where I wasn’t careful. This mask, I made SURE I went over any missed pieces in this step.

  3. It’s time to add your bias or stretch binding to finish the edges nicely and enclose everything in a happy envelope of softness. I used regular double fold thin bias binding from the fabric store for my first mask, but for the one shown above, I used leftovers from a soft jersey knit strip that I had already cut to ~1" wide for a previous face mask strap. I sewed the knit strip to the back side of the mask first (the side where the nose piece is), lining the edge of the strip up with the edge of the mask pieces and sewing with a scant 1/4" seam allowance.

Then, I folded the strip over to the front side, rolling the cut edge under slightly and pinning like crazy! Then, I sewed it with a full 1/4" seam allowance, sewing with the front side up on my machine so I could make sure I was catching the very edge of the folded over strip.

  1. It is time to add the straps, fully according to your preference and angle and method. I prefer ear straps, for both security and comfort; my pieces were about 6" long. I have used 1/4" elastic before, which is fine. I used a jersey knit tubing from an Etsy mask making supply store for this version, though. It’s definitely more comfortable. To do ear straps, I hold the mask up to my face and position it as comfortably as possible, making sure the nose piece is folded in and running across the bridge of my nose. Then, I mark the place on the mask’s edge that aligns with the place my ears connect to my head on either side. I sew the straps to the outside of the mask by hand, allowing me to remove them easily later if they stretch out and need replacing or adjusting. Then, I hold the mask up to my face again, pull the traps over my ears, and hold my strap material up to the place on the mask’s edge that will best hold it to my face at the angle I like. Hand sew the final strap connection points to the outside of the mask, and YOU’RE DONE!

Enjoy a blissful sleep in the cradling arms of complete darkness! :grin: :+1:


Really beautiful fabric, and so functional with the 3-D nose piece. Light has such a huge impact on sleep quality, too. Kudos!


Love the fabric & I am sooo curious about the extra nose piece. My mom had a shaped mask that blocked that area but I’ve never found it’s like. Maybe some day you’ll add more pics about that part & I’ll try to copy it.
The around the ears elastic is so clever too, I’ve only ever seen around the head elastic but this makes so much more sense.


Very nice! Great functional details and the fabrics are relaxing just to look at.

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Thank you so much, @endymion and @Magpie and @TheMistressT ! Usually I get fabric at the main fabric store named after a lady that we all know in the US. This one, though, came from the cute little quilting store near my house. Much more expensive without coupons, but absolutely worth it for the uniqueness, beauty, and quality. I got this one and an abstract pink batik to make buckwheat leg pillows for me and my mom (which are holding up beautifully!).

I’m working on figuring out how to scan the pattern I made in a way that is usable for others! I’ll look through the LC user stuff, but if anyone knows how to include a downloadable PDF, that would be great!

Edited to Add
I’ve added the Pattern and Tutorial Steps! If anyone makes one, I’d love to see it! Also, let me know if there are any questions. :heart:

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Lovely! I used to use eye masks a lot. Never considered loops over the ears! Clever!

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Wow! So much thoughtful engineering into something that I always took for granted as simple (obviously never made or used one myself). Thanks so much for sharing your tutorial and pattern!!

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Thank you so much! @Bunny1kenobi The original Quantas mask was the first time I cut the head straps off and turned them into ear straps; I took it to Japan with me and tried that to prevent it from constantly either rolling off my head at night, or tying itself into my hair.

Aw, thank you, @Abbeeroad ! I appreciate that. I love functional things that turn out the way you want them and look pretty, too. I want to share that with others!

Also, testing update! Ended up putting it on for a while this morning when my husband sat in bed with his phone on for a while when I wasn’t ready to wake up yet. Almost 100% light blockage! :partying_face:

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