Making masks to stay open

Bayley Herring dispalys one of the thousands of masks Creative Printing has made since the intial essential business order placed by Governor Greg Abbott last month. (Photo by Chris Filoteo)

THREE RIVERS – Many businesses have suffered since the initial social distancing restrictions were in place last month.

But one business in particular has switched its focus in order to stay open.

“In order for the city to deem my business essential, I had to only make masks,” Missy Herring, owner of Creative Printing & More said. “We can’t make fun things because it’s not essential.”

Creative Printing has been at its location across from the Three Rivers city hall since 2013, but Missy started the company in 2005.

“It’s definitely been a struggle to pay bills, rent and sales tax,” she said.

Missy’s daughter, Leah, first mentioned making masks after learning a hospital in San Antonio was in need.

“She’s the one that wanted to make some to donate to the hospital,” Missy said. “Then, we started making some for the community. We are truly blessed.”

Missy said they have made more than 3,000 masks for sale thus far, but have donated 2,000 masks as well.

“We have focused on making masks for the communities,” Missy said. “We also provide office stationary for oil companies that need ticket orders and receipts.”

Missy has received donations of materials to help continue making masks.

“The community has stepped up, and people have donated materials since that is becoming harder to find right now,” she said. “We donated masks to nursing home, and many people in the medical field.”

To follow social distancing guidelines, only one customer is allowed inside the business at a time with red tape marking the floor where to stand.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, Creative Printing made specialized T-shirts, hats, decals and many other items.

“We still have customers asking for customized items,” Missy said. “I tell them we can’t make anything right now, but I put them on a list, and when we can make non-essential items again they will be the first we call.”

Missy sells the masks for $2 located off 116 W. Thornton St. Customers can call ahead and place and order before picking up the masks at 361-786-2122.