Writing every day with substance and relevance is hard. Most days, the words flow from my mind on to the computer screen with minimal effort. Some days, it is a struggle to pull them out.
Today is one such day. This is the post I probably should have written yesterday. I need to take my own consul and remember that on Tuesdays when I write a Slice of Life post, it needs to be shorter. I’ve learned this lesson before, but it seems I forgot again.
This morning I spent sewing child-sized fabric face masks. A customer bought two masks yesterday and then asked if the one designated as small was for a child. Uh – no. My Etsy shop, Carol’s Jewelry Orchard, explains on the mask description how the masks are sized. She did not see the sizing information. But, it was there. Etsy has reorganized their listings and the description of the product is not appear in its entirety unless the customer clicks “Learn More About This Item” following a brief two to three sentence description. My handmade masks are fully described but the sizing is not visible unless you click this tab……Maybe something I should consider changing. Maybe.
Anyway, I pride myself on excellent customer service. After an email to this customer, explaining the sizing, she said she still wanted the masks if one of them could be child sized. This is what I call good timing. Recently, I started making child sized fabric face masks using a pattern that is for 3-6 year olds and another for 7-10 year olds. None of these masks had been listed yet.
I had some in the works, and finished those. I also made a couple more that matched the face mask the customer had bought for herself. The other was purchased for her 3 year old granddaughter. They turned out cute and will be mailed out to California this afternoon. It is my third order from California this week! Thank you, Golden State!
The completion of this order brings my total mask sales on Etsy to 76 since last April. Not bad for being sold in a shop that specializes in jewelry! My customers seem happy with my work and I am happy making them, as well. You can check the reviews of their mask purchases if you are interested.
I had the opportunity earlier this week to make fabric face masks for a local student organization. But, after seeing the mask, I declined the opportunity. It was not that I didn’t want to help. I like to help and do it often. After all, I have donated close to 300 masks in addition to the ones I’ve sold. The proposed mask had some pleats as well as a plastic piece that needed to be sewn in to the nose. I know my 1969 Sears Kenmore machine would not get through it without some issues. There are reasons why I am making fitted masks and not pleated ones – my machine does not like the layers of fabric that go into the pleats. I know. I’ve tried.
After using 3-4 different mask patterns, I’ve found two that I can make, fulfill the CDC guidelines for masks, and look professional when I’m done. I don’t want to try a new pattern. I’m actually trying to get to the point where I can try out my new sewing machine and didn’t think a project for a community group was a great project on which to learn the new settings. Besides, I’m saving this fabric for my next project. What do you think it will be?
So, I’ve been making masks. And, I’ll continue to make masks. I have another large donation of them to make. But, I am trying to have 75 done before I donate. In the meantime, I keep selling them, make sure family and friends have them, and spend time sewing new ones.
It’s been fun, productive, and a good way to pass the slow days of winter during this pandemic. I’m very glad to keep myself busy – aside from writing.