We all show our love for Buffalo in different ways. Some of you may adorn your home or office with Buffalo artwork. Some of you may literally wear Buffalo on your sleeve. And, hopefully, all of you show your love by opening up your wallet and supporting local businesses whenever you can.
If you fit into any of those Buffalovin’ categories, you’re going to love Buffalo Seamery. Because if you love Buffalo, you probably love your Buffalo neighbor and if you love your Buffalo neighbor, you’re probably wearing a mask whenever you venture out. And now you can show your civic pride (and show you care!) by wearing Buffalo-themed masks made by local maker, Liz Brodfuehrer, and sold at her Buffalo Seamery retail shop (299 Parkside Ave.), and online.
Buffalo Seamery’s line of masks includes, among others: standing buffaloes, butter lambs, pierogis and Buffalo City Hall. There are 13 different fabric choices sure to make you smile (although we’ll have to take your word for it).
“Every mask, pair of socks or, honestly, any item I make is imaginative, fun and meant to bring a smile to your face,” said Brodfuehrer. It brings a smile to hers as well. “The feeling of making a design, seeing it printed on fabric, and then cutting and sewing it yourself is such a fulfilling feeling, especially when I spot one of my items in the wild.”
Her passion for sewing took off after college when she found a light blue, vintage sewing machine at an estate sale. Self-taught, she spent many hours playing around with patterns and dabbling in sewing. When she was pregnant with her first child, she would sew baby accessories that she couldn’t find locally – hats, bow ties, etc. Once she discovered that there was a market for her items, she launched her Etsy shop and website, www.buffaloseamery.com.
After a year in business, she decided that a shift in focus to Buffalo-themed items was the way to go and so came baby clothes, socks, leggings and headbands all sporting her own custom standing buffalo design. Given her family’s Polish background, she even started designing her own custom fabrics to reflect her heritage.
“I like to bring the unique Buffalo-isms to light in my fabric,” she said. “My butter lamb design has been extremely popular. Same with the pierogi fabric. I even met with Sahlen’s to explore the possibility of Sahlen’s socks.”
Then March 2020 happened.
St. Patrick’s Day and Dyngus Day are typically her best-selling days of the year, so when the pandemic hit at the same time, it was a huge blow to her bottom line. Within weeks she was producing and donating masks to healthcare workers as fast as she could make them. Shortly after that, she started selling them to the general public. Since she stocked so many Buffalo fabrics, it was an easy transition into mask-making. Her colorful, fun masks are reasonably priced between $10-$12 and most importantly, they’re comfortable.
“My straps are super stretchy and soft and give the wearer a few options to make the mask fit comfortably and fit in the safest way possible,” Brodfuehrer added.
Buffalonians have shown her incredible support.
“Buying local is everything right now,” she said. “It really can make or break someone’s business. Those few purchases that you think may not be a big deal could make someone’s rent and give them another month to try to pull ahead.”
If you’re reading this blog from afar, Buffalo Seamery ships all over the world when you make a purchase online at buffaloseamery.com. But if you’re in this neck of the woods, please consider stopping into their Parkside shop. Buy local and mask up, Buffalo!