Newport News printing company invents 'The Strappee' for hassle-free mask wearing

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Posted at 2:42 PM, Mar 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-24 08:39:25-04

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. - For more than 40 years, Cardwell Printing in Newport News has been local businesses' source for printing and promotional needs.

"We do apparel, screen printing, offset, large printing and direct mail," said owner Danette Gibson.

When the pandemic hit, the family-owned company naturally started making and screen printing on masks - which often were forgotten around the office.

"People would forget them, lose them or I found them on the floor," she said. "I was trying to make sure everyone was complying to the new rules."

That's when a light bulb sparked for Gibson.

"I wear sunglasses every day, and I thought, 'We can just do the same thing,'" she explained.

Just like that, The Strappeewas born over Memorial Day Weekend 2020. No more chin straps or ear ornaments.

It snaps around your ear straps and has a safety clasp as well. It basically keeps your mask at the ready, taking the hassle out of masking up.

Recently, Cardwell Printing hit the big stage with their big invention, appearing Monday on the Home Shopping Network as winners of the Big Find Contest.

So far, they've sold about 25,000 to date. Businesses are taking notice of the must-have for their masks.

"This is a functional, walking advertisement," said Gibson. "This is a project that kept our minds off of coronavirus, working hard together to make something cool happen."

You can order your custom Strappee or choose from many colors and designs here.

Click here for full coronavirus coverage.