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Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Masks as Apparel

The thought came to mind as I walked retail yesterday, made me shudder as I counted the mask wearers in the aisle.   Gathering data.   There seems to be no end in sight.   As I tried to smile at a helpful employee.  Masks are becoming apparel, and they may be with us ... forever? 

Will face masks be a lifeline for apparel retail?
with 16 Expert Comments .... 

by Matthew Stern

Apparel continues to struggle amid the uncertainty of the novel coronavirus pandemic, but one brand has made the best out of the situation, pivoting to use materials already in its pipeline to create a pandemic-appropriate product.

Facing sales declines of 60 percent at the onset of the novel coronavirus outbreak, San Francisco menswear brand Blade + Blue began working with its manufacturing partner to use remnants from last season’s shirts as well as the upcoming summer season’s shirts to make masks, CNN Business reported. The brand’s founder, Peter Papas, said that the move not only saved the business, it also attracted new customers. Blade + Blue has donated some masks to healthcare workers and first responders in addition to selling them to the general public.

In addition to slowing sales and supply chain disruptions, backlogged inventory has been one of the biggest problems faced by apparel brands and retailers throughout the duration of the pandemic. Retailers with highly-seasonal stock are having to choose between holding over unreleased seasonal merchandise into the following year or selling at huge markdowns as stores slowly reopen.... "

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