A Lotus River couple used their creativity and a vintage sewing machine to make the perfect mask which opened a door of opportunity for them to make ends meet during the lockdown.
Roshan Damons and her husband Denver are both self employed.
Ms Damons is an events manager and her husband a musician.
When lockdown prevented them from working, Ms Damons was forced to use her creative mind to find a way to put food on the table.
In April an idea popped in her head and she decided to make masks to sell.
The responsibility to feed their two children drove them to try out this new venture and as their family and friends helped them financially, they decided to invest that money into their business.
Their business Coco and Yoyo was named after their children Cory, 8, and Jorah, 6.
Ms Damons said she was taking a chance as she didn’t know how to sew.
“But we had a vintage Singer sewing machine and I watched YouTube videos until I found the perfect mask. But unfortunately, I overworked the old machine and it broke.”
A good Samaritan blessed Ms Damons with a fully functioning second-hand sewing machine.
“We worked long hours when we started making two-ply cloth masks,” she said.
When infections peaked, they made a three-ply mask with 100% cotton fabric.
Ms Damons said her husband, who was doing the cutting, and her family jumped in to help.
“We were working from 6am and went to bed at 2am to complete the orders.”
The Damons family mask orders increased and word spread so fast it reached the ears of the South African Navy and well known security companies who placed orders.
They also supply schools and churches in the area.
“The highlight of our orders is supplying one of the Mrs SA top 25 candidates where we have to match a mask to every dress she will be wearing,” said Ms Damons.
She said they have also advanced to making headbands, bonnets and T-shirts.
Ms Damons said the reason why their brand went viral was because both she and her husband knew a lot of people due to their professions.
“We also make a quality type of mask, however, I know my community and what they can afford so we make it affordable.”
Ms Damons advised anyone who has a dream to go for it.
“I used to work for an insurance company and in 2018 I studied events management and I was successful, until lockdown. Whatever you try, you should always allow room for failure, while always believing that you will eventually get there to reach your goal.”