Women Designers working to meet critical needs

April 7, 2020 YKK

We’re inspired by the work of many companies and independent designers that have come together during these difficult times to help their community members, especially those in the healthcare industry. In this installment of our Women Designers Series, we’re highlighting the work of women designers who have shifted their production and business model to lend a helping hand amid the Covid-19 Pandemic.

Atlanta-based designer Shadé Olabisi, founder of LaShadé Designs has started a new line of fashionable face masks available to purchase on her website. Parts of the proceeds is being used to purchase more material to donate masks to medical facilities. The designer shared on an Instagram post on April 5 that more than 150 masks have already been donated.


What an interesting time it is....from sewing garments, fittings and photoshoots to sewing face masks from morning to night. I'm glad that my skills can be useful during this time of need. Each purchase you make is helping buy more supplies to donate masks to healthcare facilities & schools ( cafeteria workers, bus drivers) . <<< THANK YOU! Already 150+ masks donated thanks to you 🙌🏽 . LINK IN BIO . . . #staysafe #fashiondesigner #sewingmasks #masks #fashionmask #LaShadéDesigns #support #printmask #change #donation #thankyou #prayersup #cottonmask #colors #cdc #global #peace #flattenthecurve #socialdistancing #lovefromadistance #quarantine #quarantineshopping #facemask

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Leigh Metcalf, founder of Topstitch Studio and Lounge, has rallied her entire crew, including instructors and students, to make face masks that will be donated to health care workers. The team has also started a collaborative online sewing community called “Sewcial Network” where sewists can collaborate and stay engaged with the community while learning how to make face masks.


The entire Topstitch crew is on face mask duty! For medical heroes and neighbors! 😷 Cranking them out. We are making them for free but if you want to support our efforts you can by making a donation that will go to my Topstitch employees. paypal.me/topstitchstudio ❤️ We have more requests than we can handle right now but we will keep sewing on. If you don’t sew and need a mask asap, the surgeon general posted a video on the CDC web site on how you can make one from a t-shirt or scarf with rubberbands or hair ties. Patterns we are using are from @craftpassion and @sugardale You can also support Topstitch by joining our sewcial network or taking our first online class! We are doing tons of fun things there! 💃🏻 Link in profile.

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Fashion designer Yoko Katz, creator of the Relaxipa post mastectomy blouse, has also joined the fight by making masks to help health care workers in New York state where she resides. Angela Luna, founder of ADIFF, a fashion brand that aims to bring circularity to the forefront of the fashion industry, has also developed a new line of facial masks with all proceeds going to support the brand’s employees’ who are resettled refugees in Athens, Greece.

Elena Carné, founder of T31 Activewear, has organized a team of community volunteers in Americus, GA, to help make more than 4,000 masks that will be donated to the Phoebe Putney Health System. The entrepreneur has also started a a GoFundMe page to help raise funds to make additional masks that will be sent out to healthcare workers in Chicago, Miami, Michigan and Virginia.


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