SAN ANTONIO – Six months ago, Maggie Ibarra-Jimenez embarked on a journey she feared would change her life for the worse.
The city of San Antonio has issued an order for all non-essential businesses, including its Maddie Mac Boutique, to close indefinitely due to the coronavirus.
Ibarra-Jimenez, who sells handicrafts in her northwestern shop, wonders what she will do next.
However, he said a friend, who is partnering with a separate business, is looking at the future and providing advice.
“She told me, ‘Maggie, you have to make a face mask,” said Ibarra-Jimenez. “Sewing is none of my business, but that is rapidly changing.”
With a sewing machine donated by another friend, she started learning how to use a needle and thread.
Now, he couldn’t stop making masks because the demand for his handmade designs had increased greatly.
He even had to recruit his grown children to help out on his assembly line.
“The leopard mask, people really like it. It has something to do with college or depending on your profession, ”he said, explaining some of his work.
Ibarra-Jimenez, a self-described “fashionista”, decided to turn what was needed into a fashion accessory.
And it turns out that many mask wearers agree with this concept.
“I’m just going to get a style, like a butterfly or pink with rhinestones on it,” said Faith Estrada, who at the time of the interview, wore a colorful facepatch she bought in Houston.
Estrada said he prefers fancy masks over the basic paper types worn by medical professionals.
Betty Tarver, who is dressed in a homemade light blue dress, says she usually doesn’t think much of the problem even if other people do.
“I’ve seen some that are very, very cute and they have sequins and gems,” Tarver said.
For Avis Love, the white mask wrapped in musical notes has a more sentimental value.
She says her son made it, himself, and gifted her.
However, if the opportunity arises, he usually adapts his mask to his outfit.
“I have a different one,” he said. “My favorite is my black skin.”
Ibarra-Jimenez had a hard time deciding which creation he liked best.
He is sure, that he will not stop creating in the near future.
“I don’t know how long we’ll be wearing this, but for sure we have to feel comfortable,” he said. “And stylish, fashionable.”
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