In 2019, Fast Company named CannonDesign a World Changing Company, thanks to its “commitment to pursuing innovation for the good of society.”
That sentiment rings true now more than ever, as the company has challenged designer and maker communities to come up with a DIY mask that is easy to make, and effective. According to CannonDesign, partners in the project already include SUNY Buffalo, materialsIn, Oxford Pennant, Stitch Buffalo, The Factory Buffalo, and materialsIn.
A working prototype is expected to be unveiled any day now. Ultimately this is an ingenious collaborative approach that will help health workers in lower acuity environments, as they deal with the mounting COVID-19 crisis. By manufacturing these locally innovated masks, the hope is that coveted N-96 masks would be freed up for doctors and nurses that deal directly with patients.
The collaborative team has set out to accomplish the following measures:
- Establishing a patternless-pattern sewists can replicate efficiently
- Using 3D printed clips or rubber bands to eliminate elastics or ties from the design
- Connecting experts to makers to share best practices and guidelines
- Building local networks and streamlined paths to get masks from makers to health care workers
Anyone looking to get involved with this design and production effort can reach out via this form. The CannonDesign team says that this effort is very scaleable – they are hoping that more groups sign up to join the effort at hand.
While CannonDesign’s roots are found in Niagara Falls, and a current corporate office is located in Grand Island, in April 0f 2019, the company announced that it would be relocating its 200 employees from its current location to 40-50 Fountain Plaza. The firm is taking 35,000 sq.ft. of space on the complex’s mezzanine level (see story here).