Craft Stores and COVID-19 – What You Need to Know
As the limited supply of face masks and other protective equipment continues to dwindle, many are turning to craft stores to buy materials to make their own. That has some stores looking for ways to make that easier while dealing with coronavirus challenges in their stores.
Here’s a roundup of what area craft stores are doing in response to COVID-19.
Michaels stores now often have reduced hours, with some closed entirely. Those stores that are open have variable hours – customers should check here for their local store. All open stores have made curbside, no-contact pickup of goods available. The company has also updated its website with instructions on how to make face masks and plastic face shields – check here if you’d like to make your own.
Jo-Ann fabrics has changed its store hours to 10 a.m.-7 p.m. to give workers additional time for cleaning and restocking. Curbside, no-contact pickup is available from all of their stores.
The company is offering free face mask kits in all of its stores as part of its “Make to Give” program where customers are encouraged to make face masks to donate to hospitals and other urgent-need areas. Jo-Ann set a goal of 100 million donated masks and says it’s at over 33 million now. The company also partnered with Neiman Marcus to make hundreds of thousands of masks and scrubs for medical workers. And, to thank employees for working during the time of COVID-19, Jo-Ann has given store and distribution center hourly workers a $2 per hour bump in pay.
Hobby Lobby, the third major craft store in the northwest suburbs, has closed all of its stores until further notice. Employees have been furloughed. The company says the move is “to allow our furloughed employees to take full advantage of the Pandemic Unemployment Compensation and Recovery Rebates provided to eligible employees by the federal government.”
For more stories about COVID-19 and its impact on our community, click here.
Brandon Bankston, Reporting