Life for us has changed. Our daily routines, our interactions with friends, our family gatherings...every single thing about our life has been altered. I still remember it clearly, March 12th and I was still in the office. We were still so naive but as the news poured in from overseas and the US had it's first case, San Francisco's lock down - we watched the news without end. It was almost all that I can do.
I knew that masks were necessary, no matter what the CDC or our local news advised, we needed them and the girls would need ones that fit. They would need ones they were willing to wear! Ones that rivaled the filtration of n95 masks which we had none, not even one. I researched online and found a study by Wake Forest Baptist Health saying that double layers where one is flannel and the other a simple cotton achieved 79% filtration. So our plaids and cottons we've been using all along to make dresses would work? So I made one, then two. Then offered them free to friends, family etc. I made 100s. Dozens sent to Elmhurst hospital's administrative staff. It gave me purpose.
As time went by this little dream of mine, this online store that was meant to create that something ''extra" with matching bow clips to classic little dresses, it went quiet. Zero sales. Zero visits, my little dream slowly coming to an end.
I sent an email to my factories to wish them safety and that we would revisit new designs later. They asked what we planned for the future and I said masks for now (here and there). They offered to make the masks but we had to say no. We didn't want production from China. It wasn't something that made sense for now despite a wonderful partnership. I had to make them here in the U.S. if we were to sell online.
A wonderful mom who is Not About Pink's biggest fan and has the biggest heart offered to help sew. With three kids all under 6 years old in tow, she sewed along with me offering free masks to all. Then that day came where she text me letting me know she no longer had job security due to the COVID situation. My heart sank. Our little store couldn't get PPP, it was all gone. We couldn't hire her and pay her for work, we weren't selling masks as a true product. But why couldn't we? I mean we sewed until past midnight to get them out free. We so can do it and it would be "Made in New York". 100% of proceeds can go to her and I can enlist more moms who need the income.
Let's say it's been the most rewarding collaboration ever. It warms my heart when I pick up masks she's made and there's fresh baked bread in the bag or lollipops for my girls. My heart is so full, our friendship is beyond words and each package we drop-off to each other we add a treat to say thank you, we are truly in this together.
Thank you for reading and our mask is now and forever will be at the lowest cost possible.