Tens of Millions of Masks Were Sold on Etsy in 2020

(p. B1) Kat Panchal hadn’t yet learned how to use her sewing machine when the pandemic started. But in March, on leave from her job as a flight attendant with American Airlines and cooped up alone in her Philadelphia apartment, the 34-year-old taught herself to sew. Soon, she was stitching masks and donating them to health care workers.

With no sign of her job coming back anytime soon, Ms. Panchal — now furloughed — put her masks on Etsy, the online marketplace where crafters and artists around the globe sell handmade and vintage goods. Since April, she has sold more than 400 masks, raking in over $4,500. Sometimes, she sews until 4 in the morning to keep up with demand.

“It was a really big blessing,” Ms. Panchal said. “It gave me something else to focus on instead of thinking about losing my job.”

Tens of millions of masks have been sold on Etsy this year. The demand has created business opportunities for the likes of Ms. Panchal, but has also turned Etsy into something unexpected: a Wall Street darling.

For the full story, see:

Matt Phillips and Gillian Friedman. “Masks Help Etsy Catch Wall St.’s Eye.” The New York Times (Wednesday, December 9, 2020): B1 & B4.

(Note: the online version of the story has the date Dec. 8, 2020, and has the title “Etsy Was a Twee Culture Punchline. Now It’s a Wall Street Darling.”)

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