Malaysian designers sew PPE gowns for medical frontliners: 'Togetherness is the key'


Khoon Hooi, among other Malaysian designers, is lending a hand in sewing hospital gowns for frontliners.

Globally, we have witnessed a change of focus for designers and labels as they lend a hand in helping out those affected by the Covid-19 spread. It is the same here, where the Malaysian Official Designers Association (Moda) is rallying those in the industry to help out.

Moda has gotten those working in fashion to put their sewing skills to good use by producing personal protection equipment (PPE) for the local medical staff. Deliveries of materials have been made to several designers, where they can then work at home to produce hospital gowns.

Melinda Looi, Khoon Hooi, Key Ng, Celeste Thoi and many others, plus their teams of seamstresses, have been busy working to help supply local hospitals with the much-needed PPE gowns.

“I will be starting to sew gowns... a very different kind of gown. Gowns that are more valuable than gold at the moment, ” Looi, who is the president of Moda, said on Instagram, when the plan was announced.

Moda is also working with online retailer FashionValet and the Islamic Medical Association Of Malaysia (Imaret). According to Moda, FashionValet will help with the fundraising and Imaret will assist the distribution to their network of hospitals.

“Hospitals are in urgent need of more PPE hospital gowns. PPE hospital gowns are very important to protect them when dealing with patients or screening patients, so that they don’t contract the virus themselves, ” reads the statement released.

Moda, a non-profit organisation, is also appealing to the public to donate, in bid to raise funds to buy the fabric needed to sew the gowns, as well as purchase other essentials like latex gloves and shoe covers for the frontliners.

“To be frank, the situation is unprecedented and we are still in the process of making sense of it all, but we need to all move forward every day, every week, one step at a time and togetherness is the key,” Dirk Luebbert, Moda executive advisor, stated.

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