The pandemic is forcing so many brides to postpone or reschedule their weddings, but those who usually are behind the scenes making a bride’s day special are now doing what they can to help during these difficult times.
Courtney Schadwald, 28, started sewing when she was in high school.
“Being behind the sewing machine is the best feeling ever. I did take lessons here in Clifton Park just from a local person in my church,” said Schadwald.
It was recently at that church she began making masks during this pandemic.
“They started doing medical masks, they put a post on Instagram, and I thought, 'I’m not doing anything right now.' That was perfect for me,” she said.
Schadwald has some extra time, being out of work during the statewide closure. She began her career after getting a fashion design degree. She started out in wedding dress alterations in Saratoga County. She says she’s always up for a challenge with wedding dresses.
“That’s my strongest suit, doing the sewing. I really love working on wedding dresses, the harder the better,” laughed Shadwald.
That is how she became familiar with the wedding dress store Lily Saratoga. Laura Mullen has owned the Saratoga Springs shop for the past five years. For the past month, the boutique has been forced to close its doors during the pandemic. So far, 118 of their brides have had to postpone their weddings.
“To have to worry about rescheduling a wedding on top of everything, some of those brides are front line workers ,and they are nurses,” said Mullen.
So the shop wanted to help out in any way possible.
“We know there are people out there who have it a lot worse, whether they are sick or are on the front lines, so we just wanted to do our part to help the community,” added Mullen.
So the boutique donated dress bags that can be made into masks. The material is perfect for its new role because it is made out of polypropylene. The material is breathable, water-resistant, and thick.
“I’m not saying they’re N-95 level, but I think it’s a lot better than having a cotton mask,” added Mullen.
Each bag can be turned into 20 masks. Schadwald is creating each of them by hand, behind her sewing machine. So far, more than 100 are already being put to use at Saratoga Hospital. Schadwald says she still has bags left over, which can make about 100 more. Mullen says the shop is willing to donate even more materials if needed.
“This is the least I can do to help those people. They’re on the front lines, and this is important,” said Schadwald.
Lily Saratoga says it will be announcing some help for brides who are essential workers who have had to postpone their wedding due to COVID-19.