APR 6, 2020
The strain that the coronavirus is inflicting upon the global health sector is devastating—critical shortages of supplies, high-risk circumstances for medical staff and dwindling funds for many facilities. In a profound and heartwarming display of community, people and companies outside the medical sector are pitching in to support the all-consuming COVID-19 relief efforts. To tally every contribution is an impossible task—but BOH has compiled dozens of design industry names and their initiatives below, to celebrate how each is doing its part to contribute during this crisis.
Updated April 13 to include Be Original Americas and Classy Art.
SALES THAT GIVE BACKThese brands are donating a portion of their proceeds to organizations that are on the front lines of the coronavirus fight. Start shopping!
In an effort to support the communities of the tri-state area, the luxury lifestyle brand Aerin is donating 20 percent of sales from its home decor and tabletop and bar categories to God’s Love We Deliver—a nonprofit organization that prepares and delivers meals to people unable to provide or prepare food for themselves—through April 15.
This month, the online art platform has announced that it will donate 10 percent of sales from its “Give Back” collections to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund for the World Health Organization. The other proceeds will go to the represented galleries and their artists. This comes as part of Artsy’s recently launched #ArtKeepsGoing campaign, created to unite the art world and art industry at large. “This moment in time is unprecedented for the world and our respective communities,” says Marina Cashdan, vice president of editorial, brand and creative at Artsy. “With the physical art world indefinitely closed, we wanted to demonstrate how art keeps going during times of crisis and uncertainty.”
East Fork’s Gift a Mug
The Asheville, North Carolina–based ceramics company East Fork has launched an initiative called Gift a Mug to support Vecinos, a free clinic that serves uninsured and underinsured patients working on farms. For every mug purchased, the $25 will go directly to Vecinos, and the mug will be gifted to a health care worker at Mission Hospital.
The Los Angeles–based company that offers made-to-order window treatments is currently offering 30 percent off all orders, and will donate a portion of sales to the Los Angeles Regional Foodbank and the L.A. Emergency COVID-19 Crisis Fund. Everhem also plans to donate to the two COVID-19 relief funds set up by Gates Philanthropy Partners.
The Brooklyn–based interior architecture studio General Assembly has launched “At Home,” an online auction “from home and for the home” until April 12. Proceeds will support Direct Relief’s COVID-19 fund. Participating brands include Apparatus, Calico Wallpaper, Egg Collective and Roll & Hill.
Five percent of any sale made on the fine art and furniture dealer’s website (or through its storefront on InCollect) will go to Citymeals on Wheels to serve at-risk community members.
For all of April and May, the cushions brand Pillow Pops is committing 10 percent of sales to No Kid Hungry to help provide meals to vulnerable children away from school.
The Seattle–based textile company Plover is making GOTS-certified organic cotton masks from its fabric scraps. The masks are being sold in packs of two online and via Instagram DM—for every unit sold, Plover will donate a two-pack to medical professionals in need.
Southern Guild’s “Closer, Still”
The Southern Guild has launched “Closer, Still,” a group art exhibition to benefit those most vulnerable in South Africa during the COVID-19 crisis. Until May 9, 30 percent of sales from works sold will be donated to Afrika Tikkun, a non-profit that provides education, health and social services in South African townships for over 25 years.
‘Stay Home, Send Beds’ Initiative from Serta Simmons Bedding
Serta Simmons Bedding, the parent company of Serta, Beautyrest and Tuft & Needle, committed to donating 10,000 mattresses to New York City hospitals and medical facilities that are facing shortages of hospital beds. They’ve also launched the ‘Stay Home, Send Beds’ initiative to facilitate bed donations for hospitals. Anyone who wishes can purchase a bed to be distributed in whichever U.S. city they choose. For every 25 beds that are donated, Serta will donate another on top of the 10,000 it has already committed.
VIRTUAL CAMPAIGNSCompanies are finding innovative ways to stay connected online—and make a difference in the process.
In collaboration with the Painting Contractors Association, Benjamin Moore has pledged to underwrite participation costs for the PCA’s Operation COVID-19 Response, an eight-week online conference aiming to provide strategies and resources to painting contractors. With the help of Benjamin Moore, both PCA members and non-members will be able to take advantage of this virtual training.
The design and architecture PR firm Novità launched the campaigns #DesignStandsTogether and #OneWithItaly on March 12 as a way of uniting the industry through bright news amidst the COVID-19 headlines.
The non-profit organization Be Original Americas is launching its #DoingWellByDoingRight campaign on Instagram, LinkedIn and Facebook to advocate for design authenticity, spotlighting members that are making an impact with design.
Through its Lunch & Learn program, Formica educates architects and designers about new surfacing products—and since the onset of the coronavirus, the company has moved these trainings online. Now, for every video view through April 30, Formica will donate 10 meals to Feeding America food banks nationwide.
Forty One Madison’s #TableTogether
From Forty One Madison comes #TableTogether, a social initiative launched as a response to New York’s canceled Tabletop Market. For every photo posted on Instagram with the tag, Forty One Madison will purchase a gift card to a restaurant in Flatiron district. Each person who posts, registers and attends the next New York Tabletop Market will be able to claim a gift card.
The retail brand has not only donated 50 sets of organic cotton sheets for face mask production, but the company has also promised to match up to $1 million in customer and team member donations to Meals on Wheels and No Kid Hungry.
Southern Studio Simplified
Southern Studio, the Cary, North Carolina–based firm, has launched a new design program called Southern Studio Simplified. This exclusive opportunity will help clients tackle smaller projects through virtual consultations—each week, the design team will focus on a different topic, ranging from gallery walls and home offices to color choices and kids’ rooms. For every consultation scheduled during the course of the coronavirus pandemic, the Southern Studio team pledges one hour of volunteer service to the local Cary community.
The Brooklyn-based custom upholstery platform is not only making masks, but has also launched a site that connects able sewers with hospitals in need, as well as an accompanying Facebook page to field questions and foster community.
Westchester Mask Making Campaign
In collaboration with Plaza Park Interiors in Mamaroneck and Amy Interiors in Eastchester, Patricia O’Shaughnessy Design in Bronxville is coordinating a grassroots effort to facilitate the sewing, making and distribution of masks and personal protective equipment for New York hospitals and health care facilities. In addition to calling for cotton fabric donations and volunteer services, the campaign has started a GoFundMe page where monetary donations can be made to support sewers in the workrooms.
THE INDUSTRY MASK-FORCEIndustry manufacturers are pivoting their production facilities to make medical supplies. They deserve a standing ovation—not only for their donations, but also for the employees who have committed to helping their communities.
In the words of the Dallas-based manufacturer, “We may not be making furniture at the moment due to the COVID-19 crisis; however, we’re busy making masks and gowns each week for people on the front lines.”
Ann Gish & The Art of Home
Retailer Ann Gish has put its home lifestyle department to work sewing face masks out of leftover fabric, donating them to the pediatric ICU at New York–Presbyterian Hospital.
Appleton Partners LLP
The Santa Monica, California–based architecture firm has risen to the occasion and begun 3-D printing reusable plastic face masks for local hospitals and medical facilities.
The North Carolina–based upholstery and leather company Aria Designs has secured funding from CIT Group to tap into its global supply chain and manufacturers to bring N95 surgical masks to health care facilities across the state.
Austin’s Couch Potatoes
On March 20, the Texas-based furniture store and manufacturer began sewing face masks and hospital gowns to help fill the shortages presented by the spread of COVID-19. The company is partnering with Austin Disaster Relief Network to get the supplies to those local facilities, and aims to make 3,500 (free) masks a day, adding hospital gowns to their production list.
Custom upholstery brand Avery Boardman has been gathering materials and reaching out to manufacturers to donate supplies to mask and medical equipment to hospitals.
The contemporary furniture brand Baker has dedicated its U.S. manufacturing facilities, design resources and high-quality fabrics to the production of masks and gowns, all of which will be donated to local hospitals in North Carolina.
Working with companies like Sherrill Furniture Brands, Century Furniture is donating materials to the Owosso, Michigan–based furniture company Woodard to assist in the production of masks.
For a limited time, while supplies last, the Houston, Texas–based wall décor company is giving free disposable masks to retailers, accepting requests via email.
The Company Store
The Company Store has donated 600 units of cotton sheet to TX N95, Quilting for a Cause, Sewing Masks for Atlanta Hospitals and Project Runway alumna Amanda Perna, all of whom are using the fabric to sew face masks.
CW Stockwell x Caitlin Wilson Design x Delgado NYC
Together, CW Stockwell, Caitlin Wilson’s eponymous Dallas firm, and handbag designer Delgado NYC have teamed up to produce over 1,000 nonmedical masks to donate to health care workers nationwide. The trio started a GoFundMe page to help compensate the men and women who are sewing the masks.
The luxury bedding and linens brand Eastern Accents has shifted operations, devoting its resources to producing up to 1,000 face masks each day, to be donated to hospitals and other facilities in the Chicago area. The company has also made the masks available for purchase online, with all proceeds going to the donation drive.
In recent weeks, the High Point, North Carolina–based furniture manufacturer has taken a serious look at its supply chain, strategizing ways that the company can give back to local health care facilities. Already underway is mask production, with medical-grade surgical gowns and reclining hospital beds in the works, CFO David Bennett tells Business of Home.
As states begin to encourage citizens to wear masks in public, the textile company Eskayel is now selling them to consumers in sets of five, pledging all sales to COVID-19 relief.
The Tulsa, Oklahoma–based fabric company has converted its sample room to mask making, donating Fabricut masks to local health care workers at three major hospital systems.
Food52 x Steele Canvas
While Amanda Hesser has been keeping our kitchens busy through Instagram Live cooking demonstrations, another part of the Food52 team has partnered with one of their makers, Steele Canvas, to create denim and flannel masks. The home goods company is selling them online in a buy-one-give-one model for medical facilities around the U.S. In the first 36 hours of the preorder, the brand was able to donate 10,000 masks—and a second preorder is already underway.
Goddard Design Group
Goddard Design Group noticed early on that the memo samples in its library were the perfect size to make washable mask covers. Calling on the help of local seamstresses and workrooms, the firm has teamed up with the Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum to donate home-sewn masks to local medical facilities, as well as accept donations of usable cotton fabric.
The Harvard Graduate School of Design has begun the production of PPE using its over 100 3D printers. The school has produced nearly 1,000 face shields and 750 visors, all of which are being donated to Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.
Holly Hunt is partnering with a local Chicago drapery workroom to convert Great Plains textiles into nonsurgical mask covers, all of which will be donated to local hospitals.
Jiun Ho at Dennis Miller Associates
Using textiles from its own inventory, Jiun Ho is working to produce medical masks for health care workers.
Out of its South Carolina warehouse, Kravet is not only producing face masks, but has donated over 1,000 yards of fabric to Woodard to help sew masks in bulk.
Usually, this Minnesota–based company manufactures outdoor furnishings from recycled plastic materials. Since the pandemic, however, Loll Designs has shifted operations, and is now making ready-to-build hospital field beds with reclining backs and adjustable headrests. Fashioned from durable and sanitary HDPE (high-density polyethylene), these beds are recyclable and available for worldwide shipping.
Currently Matouk is able to produce over 3,000 fabric masks per day, and will continue to do so long as the health care industry needs. The company is also producing an additional 25,000 masks per week with their partners in the Philippines.
Flooring manufacturing company Mohawk Industries has teamed up with Fabric Sources International to begin producing medical isolation gowns and protective face shields in Atlanta and around Dalton, Georgia. Mohawk has shifted the focus of its engineering and sewing teams to design, test and create medical gowns, averaging 1,200 per day (and growing). While initial donations are going to local medical centers, the companies hope to expand their reach to other Georgia hospitals.
The New Traditionalists and Ducduc
Custom furniture designer The New Traditionalists have come together with sister brand Ducduc Kids, transitioning the company’s production facility to make essential health care furniture like beds, carts, partitions, dividers and day care furniture in addition to face masks and gowns.
The Ohio furniture company has been approved by Huron County to run as an essential business to redirect production to make hospital gowns and masks.
Ortho Mattress has reconfigured operations in its Phoenix factory and is now producing 1,000 nonmedical face masks each day to donate to essential workers, asking only for the cost of shipping to be covered.
Based in Dallas, the luxury bed and bath linens company Peacock Alley has been producing masks made by its skeleton crew of on-site seamstresses, with others working from home. Currently, the masks are going to hospitals and other front-line workers.
Fabric design and developer Pindler invites designers to join them in sewing for the #MillionMaskChallenge, a Twitter-born tag to rally both industry sewers and DIY-ers to sew masks to meet the critical needs of health care workers, and now, civilians.
Started by Paige Cox, a Greensboro, North Carolina–based textile artist and the co-founder of Reconsidered Goods, a nonprofit for re-purposing creative materials, the PPEople Brigade is a grassroots network working to make and donate face masks and sheilds. Over 1,000 have been donated to local North Carolina hospitals, and several have been shipped to Michigan and New York state as well.
Ralph Lauren Corporation
The fashion and lifestyle brand has pledged $10 million to COVID-19 relief, which will provide financial grants through the Emergency Assistance Foundation; contribute to the World Health Organization COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund; support the Pink Pony Fund for vulnerable cancer patients; and give an inaugural gift to the Council of Fashion Designers of America/Vogue Fashion Fund for COVID-19 relief. What’s more, the company is producing 250,000 masks and 25,000 isolation gowns for donation with its U.S. manufacturing partners.
The design collective RCH Studios is mobilizing its resources to begin 3-D printing face shields for hospital workers—its team is currently producing between 80 and 100 units weekly.
Roger and Chris
The North Carolina–based custom furniture company has dedicated a portion of its team to sew face masks to donate to those on the front lines of COVID-19 relief.
The Fairfield, Connecticut–based rug and fabric brand has donated their Linen Emil fabric to an unnamed designer in Chicago who is making masks for emergency workers. The company has also tasked its own workroom with making masks for local Connecticut hospitals.
Salone del Mobile.Milano
The fair was postponed, but the organizers of Salone del Mobile didn’t let that stop them from supporting their community. With thanks expressed to the Chinese design sector, VNU Exhibitions Asia, FederlegnoArredo and Salone del Mobile.Milano, 545,000 medical masks have been donated to the Italian Red Cross.
Sandra Jordan Prima Alpaca
The Healdsburg, California–based company is partnering with its artisan network to “lend a helping hoof” by donating archived fabric to its partners to sew hundreds of non-surgical masks for local health care workers in Sonoma County.
Not only has Schumacher donated hundreds of yards of fabric to the efforts organized by Woodard and other smaller mask-making initiatives, the luxury fabric brand is currently producing about 500 masks per day at its facility in South Carolina. Approximately 1,500 masks will ship next week to the Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx, in addition to the masks being donated to local South Carolina health care workers.
Sherrill Furniture Brands
The North Carolina–based furniture company has been working with Woodard, donating materials to help produce masks for hospitals and emergency workers.
Silk Road Rug Inc.
The Los Angeles–based rug distributor and workroom is seeking donations of unused fabric rolls and sample remnants from the interior design and textile industries in L.A. County to go towards handmade face masks to be donated to local hospitals and doctor offices. Silk Road Rug Inc. has converted three-quarters of its workroom to make protective gear for health care workers.
The New Jersey–based office seating brand is producing washable, protective masks for health care workers. Stylex invites those in the tri-state area to connect with its team should they want to join the initiative, or if they know of facilities in need of supplies.
Sutherland Furniture and Perennials Fabrics have pivoted operations and dedicated their warehouses to the production of health masks to be donated to health care workers and others fighting on the COVID-19 front lines, using the hashtag #TheHeartOfDesign on Instagram as part of their initiative. The solution-dyed acrylic fabric masks are bleach-washable and will extend the life of regulation N95 face masks and can withstand repeated cleaning.
Wearbest Weavers, a subsidiary of Swavelle, has successfully pivoted to creating PPE textiles that comply with national standards to meet Barrier I, II and III qualifications. The goods are qualified to be sewn into medical, hospital and isolation gowns, as well as other protective clothing.
The Newark, New Jersey–based sewing department at Thibaut, the fine fabrics and wallcoverings company, has been busy making fabric face masks to aid health care and essential workers extend the life of their equipment. Thibaut not only has donated over 600 masks, but it has also donated fabric to sewers and workrooms nationwide.
The Urban Electric Co.
When construction and engineering company the Bourne Group asked if Urban Electric would be willing to help produce face shields, the custom lighting company answered with gusto. Using its water jet capabilities, donated equipment and their craftsman crew, Urban Electric is working to make thousands of these face shields to donate to the Medical University of South Carolina and the staff at Ropers St. Francis Healthcare.