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, Bluprint has partnered with Knitted Knockers to challenge the Bluprint 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 Bluprint 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