But the real surprise was lurking inside one of the machines: €1,000 ($1,085) in cash, stashed there by the previous owner and forgotten about.
“We immediately called the police who tracked down the owner,” 21-year-old Sherzad Ahmed told AFP Monday.
“He was very, very happy.”
The feelgood story happened in the small German town of Morsbach, North Rhine-Westphalia, last Wednesday, local police said in a statement.
The 56-year-old owner had hidden the money in the sewing machine when he was visiting Christmas markets as a travelling salesman last year before forgetting all about the “secret hiding place”, police said.
Ahmed, who came to Germany with his parents and two sisters four years ago, said they never considered keeping the cash.
“No, no, no,” he laughed, adding that the owner had rewarded the honest finders with €200.
Ahmed's father repaired the machines and his mother, who works in an old people's home, has been churning out masks ever since.
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