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As we continue to navigate a world turned upside down by the coronavirus, masks have been a critically essential tool to curb the spread of the disease. And while we’ve covered a number of coronavirus face masks on the site, fashion designers have recently thrown their hats into the ring to help out as well — yielding highly stylish results.
New York City-based brand Rowing Blazers might be known for their rugby shirts, but like many other fashion brands, they felt a need to doing something meaningful. “I thought it would be cool to use all the leftover scraps of fabric we’ve been saving from making blazers and suits for something good,” Rowing Blazers founder Jack Carlson told SPY over email. “I liked that our sewers could go back to work, I liked the idea of making masks to donate to the [NYC] Food Bank, and I was excited to make some available on our site too. I thought people might think that they’re cool.”
Turns out he was right. Rowing Blazers prides themselves on using high-quality materials, which in the case of their rugby shirts, means really dense heavyweight cotton that just feels good to wear. Taking that fabric and using it as the foundation for a face mask means you’re getting a super comfortable — and really thick — material to protect yourself. Plus, these leftover materials were just sitting around, waiting to be put to good use. And now they are.
However, the brand might have underestimated how popular they would prove to be, a fact Jack willing acknowledges. “We’ve been blown away by how popular the masks have been. I had no idea how wild people would go for them.” The first batch sold out within minutes. In fact, by the time you’re reading this, there’s a good chance the second batch may have sold out again. But don’t worry, Jack says the brand is “making more as quickly as we possibly can, both to donate and to put on our site,” with a third installment set to release as soon as they’re available.
Those looking to get one can probably anticipate options in a variety of patterns including the Rowing Blazers trademark croquet strip, club blazer stripe, a supple and soft wide-wale corduroy, blazer solids and a chalk stripe pattern. Each option provides a decidedly stylish upgrade over your existing option, providing not only function but a bit of character too. If you’re looking to get out ahead of the typical Thursday morning website drop, Jack recommends subscribing to the brand’s email list, wherein a number of masks will be offered up for pre-sale ahead of time. But if you should miss out, 10% of each website sale will go to Direct Relief from now until the end of May.
Protecting yourself and others, helping a vital cause, and looking good? Sounds like Jack was right on: these masks are pretty cool.