DAVID LAYER, a fashion brand specializing in tailored suits in Moriyama, Shiga Prefecture, has donated face masks made from excess material left over from suits and shirts

Emblazoned with bright “Wagara” prints to Japanese schools in 6 countries

Promoting Japanese culture globally while joining in the fight against COVID-19

MORIYAMA, Japan, July 29, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — DAVID LAYER, a COLOR Inc. custom suits brand located in Moriyama, Shiga Prefecture (CEO: Tomohiko Banno), donated some 1,000 original design facemasks to Japanese schools in 6 countries around the world. By joining in the fight against COVID-19, these masks have transitioned the Japanese traditional "Wagara" patterns into everyday fashion. DAVID LAYER shipped the masks to the students and staff of Japanese schools in France, England, Spain and Italy, in that order, taking into consideration the current shipping restrictions.

The students of Japanese school in London received the donation of face masks
The students of Japanese school in London received the donation of face masks

The story

While most areas in Japan have, in large measure, won the battle against COVID-19, the virus remains a tremendous threat in many countries and regions. As the world adapts to a new "post-Corona" lifestyle, people kept asking themselves, in what way could they make a contribution to society. The company communicated with the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, who authorised them to send their original face masks to Japanese schools in 6 countries (New Jersey, USA/ Milan, Italy/ Paris, France/ Madrid, Spain/ Melbourne, Australia/ London, UK). The CEO graduated from a university in Melbourne where he was hosted by local families, so he is particularly elated to give back to the community.

Original face masks adorned with Japanese traditional prints
Original face masks adorned with Japanese traditional prints

The company’s deep desire is to see children smiling and looking forward to the future. This is why, in the past, they donated some 1,000 face masks to Mononobe Primary School in Moriyama, which Tomohiko Banno, CEO, and Akihiro Banno, director, both attended.

They would love to see all the children who receive these masks grow up and become strong leaders. Even while spending time abroad, they hope that the children remember their home and be proud of Japanese culture by wearing these Wagara print masks.

Donation of face masks to a local primary school in Japan
Donation of face masks to a local primary school in Japan

The facemasks

In addition to tailored suits, DAVID LAYER produces a lineup of fashion items for different occasions, including custom-made shirts. They select from more than 12,000 types of fabric that are used for the front and backing of suits and shirts. For the masks they handpicked pieces of linen, cotton and stretchy denim, considering functionality as a mask such as good air filtering and comfort on the skin, as well as fashionability and fun for the kids, with traditional prints from their home country.

The masks come in three sizes (small, medium and large) to accommodate growing children in primary school, as well as the teachers and staff who support them. The gauze lining ensures that the masks will be long lasting in addition to being easy to launder.

COLOR Inc.’s global vision

This donation of these original design face masks by COLOR Inc. is a contribution to the effort to control the spread of COVID-19. It is also part of their corporate efforts to meeting the SDGs.

– COLOR Inc.’s SDG efforts

  • Health and wellbeing for everyone: While the main focus of the company has been on the sales of tailored suits, this face mask project marks the beginning of their new endeavour to build a future where everyone in the world can lead a healthy life through quality clothing.
  • Gender equality: Suits are still generally considered strictly a men’s fashion item all around the world. They want to do away with such a biased viewpoint by developing custom suits for women and children. The "matching suits for parents and children" concept is a part of this effort.
  • Responsibility of manufacturers and consumers: The original design masks they donated to schools were made from the excess pieces of fabric left over from the custom-made suits and shirts. This contributes to the environment by reducing waste.

The business is based in Moriyama, Shiga Prefecture, where Tomohiko Banno, the CEO, and his brother and business partner, Akihiro Banno, grew up. Their passion is to invent new possibilities for tailored suits and local businesses in Shiga and to showcase them to the rest of the world.

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Written by Markus Castro

A cat person by day and a writer by night. He loves to travel to his favorite destinations in Southeast Asia.

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