Craftsy is Participating In Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Find Out How You Can Help!

Posted by on Oct 6, 2012 in Crocheting, Knitting | Comments


Craftsy Cares is Participating in Breast Cancer Awareness Month with Knitted Knockers
Hey knitters and crocheters, looking for a quick project to do with some extra yarn in your stash? In the spirit of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Craftsy has partnered with Knitted Knockers to challenge the Craftsy community to knit or crochet as many sets of “Knitted Knockers” as we can through the month of October.

Knitted Knockers are just that, “Knitted prosthetic breasts for mastectomy patients,” says double mastectomy survivor and Knitted Knockers founder, Chesley Flotten. She began Knitted Knockers after her personal battle with breast cancer. Flotten had undergone her first single mastectomy when a friend gave her a gift that started it all–a knitted breast!

The knitted prosthetic has the same shape and feel of a normal breast and can fit right inside a bra to fill the void. “Knitted fabrics breathe and prevent heat rash unlike silicone prostethics,” says Flotten. Going though this experience herself, Flotten wanted to share with the world what her friend had shared with her. “A silicone prosthetic breast costs between $300 and $500, and without health insurance, that cost is out of reach for many cancer survivors. Even those with insurance are limited to a new prosthetic breast every two years. If it springs a leak that is not covered by the warranty, you are out of luck,” she says.

Flotten took it upon herself to share her idea with the world and started collecting Knitted Knockers in 2007. Knitted Knockers have reached women all over and changed their lives forever, allowing them to insert the Knitted Knocker into their bra and have the confidence to give or receive a hug without being self-conscious about their prosthetic feeling unrealistic or trying to hide their prosthetic with baggy clothing.

We are ecstatic to have partnered with such an inspiring woman and a charity that has the ability to reach and help so many women. Here is the Knitted Knockers pattern to get started on your pair! Flotten has requested matching sets of knockers for women receiving double mastectomies in any size, any color, stuffed or unstuffed.

Before you pick up your needles and get to crafting your first pair of Knitted Knockers, check out these tips from “The Knitting Experience Cafe”:

    • Women and breasts come in all sizes, so we need all sizes. Knit whatever strikes your fancy. Knit your size. Knit your sister’s size. Just knit.
    • When choosing a yarn, look for DK or sport weight. You want something that is soft, lightweight, and that breathes. My favorite yarn for the project is Cascade’s pima tencel, a cotton/tencel blend. Many people are making their knockers out of Debbie Bliss’s baby cashmerino. Bamboo is another good choice. Avoid pure wool as it can be itchy when close to the skin. Check your stash, ask your friends to swap yarn, have fun, and be creative!
    • We stuff each breast with poly-fill, but always leave a small opening so the recipient can adjust the size by adding or removing filling, and then sewing up the seam themselves.
    • The “Tit-bits” pattern provides instruction to begin at the front of the boob with a short i-cord that will be tied into a knot to form a nipple. I have found that most women prefer the knitted breast without the faux nipple. Just cast on, and begin your increases!
    • Feel free to take pictures of your Knitted Knockers and upload them onto the Craftsy Projects and tag them to Knitted Knockers; we would love to see them! Happy crafting and thank you for spreading breast cancer awareness.

 

When you are finished with your Knitted Knocker, download our FREE gift tag, attach, and send your finished project here:
The Knitted Knockers Program
c/o Chesley Flotten
615 Harpswell Rd
Brunswick, ME 04011

Comments

  1. JulieCC says:

    I am a 2+ year breast cancer survivor and I was sent a few pairs of knitted knockers after my double mastectomy. They are *wonderful*!!! This is such a great way to support women! I did eventually have implants put in, but they failed, and now I had a free-TRAM reconstruction. But during the times I was “flat” the KKs really helped as I didn’t want to do typical prosthetics.

    Thank you SO much for supporting this great cause!!!!

    1. Support says:

      Julie, Thanks so much for sharing such a personal story! We’re proud to have a community of crafters eager to help such strong women as yourself.

    2. Chesley says:

      Julie, thank you so much for sharing your experience! I too wore a knitted knocker before my reconstruction and it was sooooo much more comfortable than the silicone prosthesis.

  2. Elly Drew says:

    I have a knitted boob that needs a home, do you know of anywhere in the UK or Europe that is doing the same thing? Thank you

  3. bingz says:

    I would love to participate but I only know how to crochet! Is there a crochet pattern I can use as well?

    1. HaileyP says:

      Here is the link to the crochet pattern from the Knitted Kockers site;
      http://happyhooker.wordpress.com/2010/02/11/breast-cancer-false-breast/
      Happy crocheting!

  4. AndreainTn says:

    What a wonderful idea and what a coincidence- my senior group has been talking about trying a new project. Can’t wait til our next meeting to get everyone fired up . You will be hearing from us. We are the knitters at Bartlett Tn Senior Center . All of us are either survivors ourselves or have close family members who have battled the big C.and the idea of giving knitted knockers for free is right up our alley

    1. Chesley says:

      Wonderful!! We look forward to hearing from you!

  5. Karen Ostendorff says:

    Has anyone made a crochet pattern?

    1. HaileyP says:

      Hi Karen,

      I am happy to help! Here is the crochet pattern the Knitted Knockers recommends: http://happyhooker.wordpress.com/2010/02/11/breast-cancer-false-breast/
      Happy crocheting and enjoying making a difference in a woman’s life.

      1. Julie says:

        Thankyou for the crochet version! I am so much better at crochet.

  6. Amy Wilson says:

    I was wondering if there is a crochet version of this at all? I don’t have any knitting ability, but am very proficient at crochet, and would love to help out this cause.

    1. HaileyP says:

      I am happy to help! Here is the crochet pattern the Knitted Knockers recommends: http://happyhooker.wordpress.com/2010/02/11/breast-cancer-false-breast/
      Happy crocheting and enjoying making a difference in a woman’s life.

  7. What I am looking for is something for those of us who have had lumpectomies. My cancer surgeries were lumpectomies that led me to having one breast one cup size smaller than the other. I have yet to find anything that will “even me up” If someone has come up with something like that, I would appreciate hearing about it

    1. Chesley says:

      Hi Juli,
      I’ve had some survivors who have had lumpectomies use very small knockers to even things out. Think of them as partial knockers. Another option is to use a knocker in the cup size you are, but remove most of the filling. Insert it into the bra, over your breast, to fill and round things out. Basically it depends on what you need for your situation. But, I’d be more than happy to send you knockers to try. Email me : info@theknittingexperience.com (you can also follow the links of the website links above for the Knitted Knockers Program) and we can figure out what you need.
      Best,
      Chesley

  8. stella says:

    A friend just shared this with me, it’s a great idea! I think my grandmother, who passed away after battling breast cancer for many years, would have gotten a kick out of it! If we’re able to set up a knit-a-long it’ll be dedicated to her!

  9. kelly lanini says:

    i have been using this pattern for about 6 years now for my 79 year old mother. i gave her her first ones the day of her surgery after she check into the hospital. the first 2 were her size one weighted one not, each with different nipples, so she could decide which she liked. i used debbie bliss cashmerino it washes so nicely and is very soft to the tender skin. the third one i made for fun. my mom is small breasted and my dad would never let her wear red. so i made her a good c cup one in red with eyelash trim. i made the i-cord (nipple) extra long and folded it over. then took it to the local tattoo parlor and picked out a nipple ring. the tattoo parlor was so into it that they gave the nipple ring to me free and wished my mom well. she loved them all. she said that every male, including her minister, had to fondle them. her doctor loved the red one so she had me make him a matching purple one.
    i can not recommend these knockers enough. easy to make up. does not take much yarn so you can splurge on the yarn. have fun, and know they will be greatly appreciated.

    1. Chesley says:

      I love your story!! The knockers are wonderful way to get people talking about breast cancer and to raise awareness.

  10. Leona says:

    My mother (who past away in 1985) preferree to fill the bra of her bathingsuit with a spoonge of plastic, the kind you can brush pans with, and then close it with fabric. Such a spoonge one can get in the supermarket and it’s a knitted kind of round plastic spoonge, it gives way to the water naturally and is very light in the suit. The normal bra she filled with something like beans to give it some normal weight. I bet you can use these tips!

  11. Leona says:

    For knitting just a part of a breastfilling (for the breast with decreased size) perhaps one could use the same pattern and make it smaller or start increasing stitches earlier in the work to get a flatter form.

  12. HaileyP says:

    There appear to be several of you looking for a crochet pattern, Knitted Knockers has love for the crocheters too! Here is a link to the crochet patten listed on their site: http://happyhooker.wordpress.com/2010/02/11/breast-cancer-false-breast/
    Enjoy crocheting a knocker or two and making a difference in someones life!

  13. Sam says:

    Wow! What an awesome idea. My mother lost her battle with breast cancer in 1989 at the age of 36, I remember how her silicon insert was so cold for her. Not only would these seem to be warmer and more comfortable, but the love that goes into making them… Awesome is all I can say, might even try to crochet some myself…

  14. Beverly says:

    My 96 yr old mother is in assisted living and needs a replacement prosthetic but unable to get payment from Medicare due to crazy rules. Where can I purchase a crochet breast for her? Thanks!

  15. Fred says:

    A more current pattern and lots of info is available at knittedknockers.info.

  16. Donna Sloss says:

    I would love to buy a pair of these knitted knockers..I had a double masct. in 2000, and had 4 surgeries for problems w/ implants. Now I have nothing and I am very self conscience about it..the bra inserts are hot, they move they shift..I have been at work and 1 just fell out of the bottom of my bra..I have been using cotton socks and that works alright but then I read about the knotted knockers in Reader’s Digest & thought they were just the greatest thing I had ever heard of..I would love to make a pair but do not knit nor do I know anyone who could teach me…I would LOVE to buy a pair from you
    Thank you,
    Donna

  17. jane languasco says:

    Do you have a pattern to share. I don’t knit in the round. Please send a flat knit pattern so I can help our cancer patients. Janiebiz@aol.com