Mandy Caruso

A family of quilters use their skills for a little good in the New Orleans community

Little Extras > Mandy Caruso

New Orleans native Mandy Caruso has been quilting with her mother for the last ten years. In March, their hobby took on a new role and became bigger than they could have imagined.

As people struggled to obtain masks to protect against Covid-19, a friend asked the duo if they could sew masks for her elderly father and his caregivers for when he returned home from a hospital stay. That one request sparked a massive movement for a small-but-mighty sewing team.

“Why not use your talent to better the community,” said Caruso.

8 year old niece sewing a custom maskJoined by another friend and Caruso’s 8-year-old niece, they began making masks – for family and friends in health care, coworkers, friends who operate small businesses that needed masks for their employees and the elderly in their community.

“Whoever needs them, we just make it happen,” said Caruso.

Today, they’ve made and donated over 200 masks to community members using materials they already owned. And there are no signs of stopping for these women.

“We keep cranking them out every day, even if we don’t have anyone who needs them,” she said. “Just in case.”

When they do ask, Caruso and team have them ready for front porch delivery.

“It’s the little things,” said Caruso. “We didn’t save their life, but we helped them feel safer and more confident going back to work.”

We couldn’t agree more about those #littleextras. We want to hear what you or your neighbors are up to! And if you or someone you know needs a mask, reach out to masksno@yahoo.com.

American flag mask
Group wearing masks in a kennel
Woman sewing a mask
Another woman sewing another mask
Group showing their custom masks
Child sewing a custom mask
Smiley face mask
Custom masks
Woman sewing another mask, lots of sewing!
Couple getting married with masks on

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