If you don't know about Barbara and Knitted Knockers Support Foundation (a 501(c)3) nonprofit run entirely by volunteers), we'd like to tell you about her/them.
In 2011 Barbara was diagnosed with breast cancer. While struggling with the shock of the news, she was initially self conscious and embarrassed that she needed to have a mastectomy… so she avoided telling very many friends. Those that she did tell, she was quick to add that she was going to be immediately reconstructed. Well, it didn’t turn out that way. Due to complications she had to go to plan B which involved an implant and tissue expansion. She was at a loss as to what to wear to appear “normal,” so that she could get back to work. She called the local cancer society and asked about acquiring a prosthesis. The woman replied, “Oh honey, you can’t put anything on that scar for at least six weeks”. SIX WEEKS!!!!! What was she going to do for six weeks? She had work to get back to, life to live. That was the first time she cried.
Through a series of very random and interesting events, Barb found out about the possibility of a knitted prosthesis. Her first set of ’knitted knockers’ was knit and delivered to her by her friend, Phyllis—in a Victoria Secret bag :-). She took them right into the bathroom stall and stuck one in her bra. “It was FABULOUS,” said Barb! “It was light, pretty, soft and fit in my own bra perfectly. I took off my jacket and knew right then that I wanted to make these available to other women going through the same situation. I thought, “what if my doctor had real knitted knockers to give to women rather than only having a photocopied picture on a sheet of paper to show them?”
Since then she has organized a group of volunteers to supply their local doctors with Knitted Knockers. In 2014, she was recognized by the Susan G. Koman Foundation and US Bowling Congress and received national attention for knittedknockers.org. Her vision has grown to connect volunteer knitters and crocheters with breast cancer survivors everywhere… so that everyone has a “Phyllis” in their life.
Knitted Knockers Support Foundation is a 501(c)3 nonprofit run entirely by volunteers. No one is getting paid. While they do what they do because they care, the simple fact is it takes money to send out the thousands of knitted knockers being provided throughout the United States and the world. Their postage costs alone $55,000 a year not counting the packaging, stuffing, print materials, etc. They are currently providing over 1,000 per month and supporting 1,200 medical clinicsT. hey estimate the cost of providing one knocker to be about $5. A donation of $10 provides a pair of knockers to one woman. They couldn't do what they do without the thousands of wonderful volunteer knitters giving freely of their time and talents to make the knockers. Just as importantly the gracious donation of funds enables them to bring these gifts of comfort to thousands of grateful recipients.
A STITCHES VIP Package at most any STITCHES Event in 2020* or 2021 that includes...
21 hours of classes (available classes)
front row reserved seating at the Fashion Show on Friday night
reserved seating at the Fashion Show dinner
reserved seating at the Student Banquet & Style Show
full access pass to the STITCHES Market throughout the weekend
5 nights hotel accommodations at the host hotel (check in on Wednesday afternoon before the show and check out on Monday morning after the show). This includes any taxes and has a $750 - $1114 value depending on the host hotel.
And you will get $500 in cash to spend any way you want (maybe some shopping in the Market?).
This combined promotional package has a value of $1945 - $2309 (and that's before you win any prizes at the show)!
*Note: Because of the timing of this campaign, it will not be possible to include STITCHES West 2020 as one of the venue choices. All other scheduled STITCHES Expos in 2020 and 2021 will be available as a choice for the winner.
If you are submitting an entry/entries into the Super Fan Knocker Challenge please remember to mail your entry/entries to XRX, Inc. by December 1, 2019 at the address below and we'll make sure the finalists get to STITCHES West 2020.
Super Fan Knocker Challenge
2704 West 3rd Street
PO Box 965
Sioux Falls, SD 57101
Please include your reciept (from the KnittingUniverse.com web store), your contanct information, the name of your entrie(s), a note about what and/or how your knocker(s) were made. And if you have a story or dedication for your entrie(s) that you would like to share (publically), please include that as well.
You are not limited to one entry. Every $20 donation will give you an additional entry into the drawing.
Super Fan Knocker Challenge Sponsors (so far)...
XRX, Inc./STITCHES.events has partnered with Knitted Knockers Support Foundation for a year-long fundraising campaign. We’re calling it the Super Fan Knocker Challenge.
This Challenge is for EVERYONE!
You can use any medium or crafting style you want. You can knit, crochet, sew, etc. - create them using your favorite technique! They are not meant to be functional. This is your time to get creative and have fun, perhaps designed in your favorite color, sports team, or animal.
You can sign up through the KnittingUniverse.com web store using the buttons below. There are three categories that you can submit to… ‘Most Creative’, ‘Most Inspirational’, and ‘Why The Heck Not?’. This is your time to let your creativity shine, perhaps your favorite sports team, your state, your favorite color or animal, whatever inspires you, have fun with it!
All entries will be juried by representatives from XRX, Inc. and Knitting Knockers Support Foundation to create a group of finalists. Those finalist knockers will be taken to STITCHES West 2020, displayed, and then judged.
Prior to the actual judging of the finalists’ knocker(s) those same finalists will be put online for a fourth ‘Peoples’ Choice’ category. All winners will be announced at STITCHES West 2020.
The winners will split thousands of dollars in prizes and cash (each winner will receive at least $1000 worth of cash and/or prizes) from our generous Super Fan Knocker Challenge Sponsors (please see the logos of those sponsors below).
But wait! There’s more! If you’re not inclined to actually make a knocker for this challenge, STITCHES Events is also offering a STITCHES VIP Prize Package* as an optional raffle item—again for a $20 donation. This prize package is worth $1945 — $2309 and may be used for any STITCHES Event in 2020 or 2021 (except for STITCHES West 2020 due to the timing).
But wait! There’s even more! If you enter a knocker into the Super Fan Knocker Challenge, you will automatically be entered into the STITCHES VIP Prize Package as an optional raffle as well!
If you enter, we ask that you mail your entry/entries to XRX, Inc. by December 1, 2019 at the address below and we'll make sure the finalists get to STITCHES West 2020.
Super Fan Knocker Challenge
2704 West 3rd Street
PO Box 965
Sioux Falls, SD 57101
Please include your receipt (from the KnittingUniverse.com web store), your contact information, the name of your entry/entries, a note about what and/or how your knocker(s) were made. And if you have a story or dedication for your entry/entries that you would like to share (publicly), please include that as well.
Please Note: Your submitted knockers will NOT be returned--regardless of if they become finalist(s) or not.
You are not limited to one entry. Every $20 donation into the give you an additional entry STITCHES VIP Prize Package Raffle. Not only is donating $20 a good thing to do for this wonderful organization, you might win a STITCHES Getaway of a life time.
We will continue to promote this challenge and gain new sponsors throughout the entire year. Our goal is to have our prize pool up to $10k (and we’re already well on our way for that).
We hope you'll consider entering this challenge and/or donating and supporting the amazing efforts of Knitted Knockers.
Together we can make a difference. This is going to be great! Thank you in advance for your support of Knitted Knockers!
P.S. And if you're coming to STITCHES West 2019 please stop by booth 417 and meet Barbara and the Knitted Knockers Gang!