Skip to Main Content

Style Blog

Support the Persian Community With the Shirt Off Your Back Face Mask Challenge

Posted Mar 25th, 2020 in In The News, Mission2Mask

The call for assistance has gone out... and King & Bay is 'in' with a challenge to others to use the 'Shirt Off Your Back' to make face masks in support of community health.


The health crisis hits close to home

Iran, in particular, has been one of the countries hardest hit by the pandemic. For the Persian community in Toronto and around the world, these are worrying times.

As a way to give back, we launched the #SOYBFaceMaskChallenge.

Creating face masks for the cause

While we are complying with social distancing guidelines and working from home, our team has been able to start producing face masks using the Master Suits, fabric swatches and other shirting fabric we have on hand.

"I'm a big believer in these face masks," says Nasir, our Farsi-speaking Persian tailor. "They're a great way to keep you from touching your face, and they do so without taking away from essential supplies our healthcare workers need."

Since launching the #SOYBFaceMaskChallenge, we've seen a number of other groups and businesses get involved.

If you're not a sewer but still want to support the community, contact us to request a mask or donate a shirt.

Where to donate your masks

Michael Garron Hospital

The PPDE Drive & Other Hospitals

Together we can make a difference.

The #SOYBFaceMaskChallenge issued

Looking for a way to help... in your own way?

Well, if you have a sewing machine and an old cotton shirt lying around, you can.

Click on the FAQs below to learn about the #SOYBFaceMaskChallenge.

Let's Get Sewing!

What is the #SOYBFaceMaskChallenge about?

The Shirt Off Your Back Face Mask Challenge is a challenge from our team at King & Bay to all sewers to make face masks that can be worn by you, your family and your neighbours in your communities.

For more information, CLICK HERE ›

Why participate?

Our frontline health workers are faced with a shortage of surgical grade masks. By producing ones at home for you and your family members, the existing supply can be reserved for our health care workers in the fight against COVID-19. 

If it's not medical grade, how does a home made face mask help?

Any face mask helps keep your [potentially] dirty hands away from your mouth and nose – two of the easy 'entry' points for any virus like COVID-19. This is helpful for you, your family and your friends.The goal is to help NOT deplete the supply of medical grade face masks – keeping them in the hands of front line workers. WATCH VIDEO ›

What do you need to to get started?

We've assembled an easy-to-follow video to guide you in making face masks. WATCH VIDEO ›

You'll need a sewing machine and a few supplies. You can also stitch by hand if you don't have a sewing machine.

  • An old shirt or cotton fabric (A breathable fabric, like cotton is preferred, but you can also us polycotton, wool or linen. We don't recommend nylon or plastic fabrics.) 
  • Needle and thread
  • ¼ inch elastic band
  • Pipe wire or twist ties 
  • Coffee filter or vacuum bag filter

For step-by-step directions, CLICK HERE ›

Is a home made mask easy to clean?

As long as you use a washable fabric, yes. And, it's recommended to wash it daily.

Remember to remove the filter paper first, and replace after washing. WATCH VIDEO ›

How can you use Social Media to spread the word?

Challenge 10 of your friends to create a mask and be sure to include #SOYBfacemaskchallenge.

Are you collecting stories?

Yes! We'd love to see your creations, photos of the people you've made them for, and the stories.

CLICK HERE to submit a photo and a comment... and we'll spread your words and acts of kindness.


There are currently no posts available. Please check back.