How are you doing today? Today's post is more of a Public Service Announcement as well as some history.
I had N-95 masks before the pandemic. The reason is simple. I learned years ago that the reason I was always getting sick in the spring was because I was allergic to tree pollen. Really allergic. It brought on seasonal allergies and I struggled to get my gardening done. It wasn't until I saw an allergist that I found out that tree pollen (particularly red bud maples) were among my worse allergies. Of course my neighborhood is full of those trees.
The doctor said: "During tree pollen season here is what you do: Keep your windows closed. Use an air purifier in your house. STAY INSIDE!"
"But I'm a gardener," I argued.
"Then wear a mask," he answered.
So my husband brought home a box of industrial N-95s that he used for his work as an engineer in big cement and lime plants. When the pandemic broke out, we kept two for ourselves and donated the rest of the box to his niece who was a visiting nurse.
But this article is about the other piece of advice the allergist gave: air purifiers.
This time of year, we always have air purifiers running in the house to abate the pollen. But in my sewing room, I use an air purifier all year long. The reason is simple: Beth suggested it for those weeks when I am doing a lot of sewing. Her reason was historic: she told me about the dreaded Fluff.
Fluff was a term used for cotton dust that caused lung diseases in workers at cotton mills and textile factories. Two great articles about it are here and here. Although none of us generate the kind of dust that a factory does, it is recommended for sewing and craft rooms (see here and here).
It's also why I vacuum my room 2x a week and use the long nozzle to collect dust in weird nooks and crannies. But the air filter probably does the most work and I make sure to change the filters regularly and keep it in the center of the room where it does the most good.
That doesn't mean my sewing room is spotless. There's a difference in organizing and cleaning. I reorganize every few months (and then can't find anything) but I try to be fastidious about the dust.
Do you use an air purifier in your sewing space? Would you consider it?
Have a safe and happy day!