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COVID-19: Fashion Industries have Joined Hands to Manufacture Protective Masks and Gowns Amid Global Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a crisis in economy. The fashion and textile companies, are hence shifting their focus and working towards a common goal: to address the urgent need for face masks and hospital gowns.

This deficiency includes medical-grade N95 masks to filter about 95% of airborne particles as well as reusable cloth masks, which offer a layer of protection to food workers and senior citizens as well as anyone going out to the grocery store.

Big fashion brands are stepping in to help gather or make these much-needed supplies. LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton announced on Saturday that it would obtain 40 million medical-grade face masks to distribute to French health authorities. Italian brand Prada said on Monday that it’s producing 80,000 overalls and 110,000 face masks at one of its factories for Italian medical.

This deficiency includes medical-grade N95 masks to filter about 95% of airborne particles as well as reusable cloth masks, which offer a layer of protection to food workers and senior citizens as well as anyone going out to the grocery store.

Source: Business times

Major fashion brands are stepping in to help collect or make these much-needed supplies. LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton announced Saturday that it would obtain 40 million medical-grade face masks to distribute to French health authorities. Italian brand Prada shared Monday that it’s producing a run of 80,000 overalls and 110,000 face masks at one of its factories for Italian medical personnel.

Prada is producing overalls and masks to be worn by medical personnel in the Tuscany region of Italy during the coronavirus pandemic.

French luxury conglomerate Kering will produce face masks in the workshops of its brands Balenciaga, Gucci and Saint Laurent. Stockholm-based H&M Group announced that it would make masks and other necessary equipment, while Inditex, parent company of Spanish fast-fashion brand Zara, said it would produce hospital gowns and masks.

Back in the U.S., American fashion and textile brands are joining the bandwagon to help combat the crisis. The Washington, D.C.-based National Council of Textile Organizations announced last week that a coalition of American fashion and textile brands, working with the federal government, had come together to produce masks as well.

On Tuesday, the Council of Fashion Designers of America announced that the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund was introducing a fundraising enterprise, to assist fashion businesses jolted by COVID-19.

Already, New York fashion designer Kerby Jean-Raymond has established an initiative, Your Friends in New York, and dedicated $50,000 to the cause, to assist women and minority-owned small creative businesses and distribute needed medical supplies. The designer posted on Instagram that his fashion label Pyer Moss has converted its headquarters into a center to house donations of masks, gloves and gowns.

Michael Costello

Costello created a washable face mask in a black, cotton-nylon stretch fabric, which he is personally producing, along with two seamstresses, at a rate of about 150 per day at his atelier in downtown Los Angeles. Costello is working to enroll other Los Angeles designers to join him in his goal of producing at least 20,000 masks to donate to healthcare facilities. He aims at providing a livelihood to all seamstresses during the pandemic.

Hedley & Bennett

Ellen Bennett, founder and chief executive of Hedley & Bennett, a workwear company that makes uniforms and aprons in the Vernon neighborhood of Los Angeles, is now producing face masks at her 16,000-square-foot facility. In collaboration with Dr. Robert H. Cho, Bennett has designed a washable, cotton chambray face mask with an inner pocket that can hold a filter supplied by the wearer.