Laura S. Howe’s Silver Lake business was no different than any other nonessential business in Los Angeles — it was closed.
That’s when Howe came up with the idea of using the scraps she had saved from all the custom-made dresses over the years at her Matrushka Construction boutique.
The result: masks. And a lot of them.
After displaying the masks on Instagram a few weeks ago, Matrushka sold 700 in the first two days. Since then, the business has now sold more than 8,000.
Because of the high demand, she has been able to provide jobs for over 10 people, paying them $3 for each mask they make. She provides them with a kit, with the material already pre-cut to form, so each person can make 25 to 75 masks a day.
Howe said she has run out of scraps, so now it’s a combination of buying fabric and receiving donated fabric from a company called Alexander Henry in Burbank.
In addition to selling the masks for $13 apiece, they have donated over 400 masks to various places, including L.A. City park rangers, a clinic in Bell Gardens and a correctional facility.