coronavirus

Needham Fashion Company Pivots to Mask Production Amid Pandemic

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While Marissa and Adam Goldstein of Needham, Massachusetts, already have their hands full with two sets of twins, they're also busy entrepreneurs running a fashion company that usually makes accessories like backpacks and pouches.

"As a small business, when coronavirus started to spread, obviously, our sales started to decline," said Marissa Goldstein.

Like many companies these days, there's just not much demand for their product.

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"We were trying to figure out what we could do to help others and put our resources to good use," Goldstein said.

And they realized the fabrics they work with could make for face masks which are in high-demand.

"We pivoted overnight from making bags to making masks," she said.

Every purchase on their website leads to a donation to front-line workers like first responders.

Friday, the couple donated 100 masks to the Framingham Police Department.

The Goldsteins, who run their fair-trade company called Rafi Nova out of their home in Needham, have had to move fast to switch up the production lines.

"We're making masks in New York, at a small family factory in the Bronx," Goldstein said. "We're also making masks at our bag factory in Vietnam in Ho Chi Minh City."

They're trying to keep sales up while, at the same time, keeping people employed and donating PPE.

"We know what we're doing is really, really small, but what we've learned is there's a role for everybody to play," said Adam Goldstein. "There's regular people like us who need to do things like this to keep everybody going right now."

The company plans to donate 10,000 masks by the end of April to police officers, firefighters, nurses and restaurant workers.

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