As charity sales and auctions are staged, companies take action, and Salone del Mobile makes its own major donation, a range of brands are pivoting their production efforts to focus on making healthcare equipment to respond to the coronavirus crisis. Decorative fabrics company Pindler is making masks for healthcare workers from its stockpile, while Perennials Fabrics is using unfinished textiles to make mask covers designed to be worn over N95 masks at Children’s Medical Center of Dallas. Elsewhere, Rough Linen is sewing masks out of its linen sheeting, designed to specifications provided by Kaiser Permanente. The company is also offering complimentary linen to the hospital’s own team of volunteer sewers.
Mattress brands are also stepping up to the challenge, with Leesa producing and distributing emergency beds—in under a week—to hospitals throughout the U.S. Eco-friendly company Avocado is repurposing part of its sewing department to produce face masks, which will be made and sold at cost. What is more, Avocado is spreading the word to hospitals about its production capabilities, including temporary mattresses, reusable sheeting, pillows, and protective garb. Below, AD PRO rounds up additional examples of design companies working to help mitigate the COVID-19 crisis.
Baker is using some of its signature fabrics to help make second layer masks to be worn over N95s. Baker president Mike Jolly said in a statement, “As a furniture company with a local factory and deep roots in the North Carolina community, we feel it is our duty to use our resources to address the urgent need for face masks and hospital gowns. We have mobilized our staff in a safe, clean environment, shifting production to design and produce PPE to protect and support frontline workers who are in dire need of these essential supplies.”
Ceramics of Italy
As Italy continues to be hit incredibly hard by the coronavirus crisis, some of its design companies are looking to help. Ceramics of Italy has donated almost $220,000 to the Sassuolo Hospital Foundation and to hospitals within hard-hit Reggio Emilia province. The money is meant to go towards the purchase of additional ICU beds.
Ducduc and The New Traditionalists
These two brands are offering countless ways to help. As writer David Sokol recently wrote in AD PRO, “Philip Erdoes, founder and owner of furniture brands Ducduc and The New Traditionalists, has retooled his Torrington, Connecticut factory to produce 300 non-N95 masks daily as well as hospital gowns for donation to local hospitals and daycare centers; he plans to expand production to include hospital beds, daycare furniture, and other larger items that can be manufactured with antimicrobial finishes and veneers that can be cleaned using appropriate disinfectants.”
EJ Victor’s CFO and COO announced that the company is taking a five-pronged plan to help make supplies needed to fight the coronavirus pandemic. Their North Carolina factory is producing covers to help extend the lives of N95 masks, disposable gowns made from surgical-grade paper, prototypes of easily assembled cots, and cotton masks to be used in non-hospital settings. Lastly, EJ Victor is working with The Industrial Commons and The Carolina Textile District to identify skilled sewers to help produce additional supplies, and giving up a portion of their factory space to help with distribution efforts.
Fine linen and bedding company Matouk is trying to act fast to aid those in need. As creative director Mindy Matouk recently told AD PRO, “Our immediate goal was to donate bedding and towels to temporary hospitals and shelters that were being set up to accommodate COVID-19 patients, or those impacted by it. But as the need for sanitary face masks and other personal protective equipment quickly escalated to a crisis, we realized that we could shift our manufacturing to supply these, as well.”