How to Select a Plague Doctor Mask

We currently offer thirteen different plague doctor masks, and I imagine it can be rather confusing for individuals interested in purchasing a mask to discern the subtle differences between them. I hope that this post clarifies these differences and serves as a guide for prospective buyers.

A comparison of all our plague doctors except Bubonis, which is our newest mask

A comparison of all our plague doctors except Bubonis, which is our newest mask

The masks can be sorted into several categories.

What is the main construction method? We make hand-stitched, machine-stitched, and riveted. Hand-stitching is the most labor-intensive, and is the most expensive. Machine stitching is the fastest to make, and is the least expensive. Riveting is in between.

What is the overall size and shape? We make masks with short beaks, long beaks, and for eyeglass wearers.  This last one requires that the lenses be further away from the eyes than our regular masks, and so we make them only with the long beak so that the proportions are appealing.

Tom Banwell's seven basic plague doctor masks compared  

Tom Banwell's seven basic plague doctor masks compared

 

The first graph shows these two criteria and the seven basic masks we make. For example, if you want a short beaked hand-stitched plague doctor mask than you should choose the Classic. If on the other hand you want a less expensive mask that will fit over eyeglasses, than you should select Jackdaw. All are made of top grain vegetable tanned leather. Five of them are made of 5-6 oz weight leather, but Jackdaw and Stiltzkin, are made of 2-3 oz leather as they are “rumpled” and require the thinner leather to achieve the folds.

In addition to these seven we make two other kinds of plague doctor masks: First are the half-masks which exclude the upper part that includes the lenses. In other words just the beak. These are riveted, and the least expensive. Second are the steampunk masks. These are all made with cold cast aluminum beaks and lens holders. All are hand stitched and are the most expensive.

Chart comparing Tom Banwell's thirteen plague doctor masks

Chart comparing Tom Banwell's thirteen plague doctor masks

Use the chart above to select the mask most suitable for your needs. Feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions.