“Made with love and filled with hope” – a knockerette’s story
My sister started it! She posted a picture on our family Whatsapp of her most recent knitting project and we all wondered what it was. When she explained that it was a knitted knocker I was so impressed. What a great idea!
In case you’ve never heard of Knitted Knockers – let me explain. They are knitted cotton prostheses for women who have had breast surgery. They are made free of charge for any woman who asks for one. There are cotton knockers for everyday use, and aqua knockers made with acrylic and stuffed with shower scrunchies that can be used for swimming.
I applied to join my sister and become a knockerette which is what we ladies who knit knockers call ourselves. I’ve always enjoyed knitting and thought that this would be a way of helping others that could easily be fitted in around work and home.
The process of being accepted as a knockerette is pretty rigorous. You have to communicate through Facebook and you have to knit two sample knockers and submit photos of them for approval. Getting those first samples approved means accepting a fair amount of feedback and making adjustments. In my case I think I knitted one of them 3 times before I got it right!
My sister was very encouraging as were the other knockerettes. And it’s right that standards are so high. During this time you become part of the KKUK Community group on Facebook where stories are shared, comments made and photos posted. There’s a real community feel to the group.
Once I was “qualified” I was admitted to 3 other private Facebook groups for Knitted orders, Aqua orders and Samples orders. You can start to offer to knit orders from then on. I then got sent my starter pack of yarn, packing bags, labels etc and I was ready to go.
It took a few rounds of feedback and advice before my first order was complete but once it was approved I felt quite emotional. I’ve since done quite a few orders and recently co-ordinated my first sample pack which is how I met Rebecca. I’ve also helped to raise awareness about the work we do by supporting a stand in John Lewis in Leicester on the last Friday of the month.
So many people are touched by breast cancer and it’s heart warming to meet people and talk to them about the work that KKUK does. You don’t have to be a knitter to help – we have people who run marathons with knitted knockers on their tops to raise money, and others who help with admin. And of course some people make donations which are very much appreciated.
You can find out more about KKUK’s work at https://www.kkukciowix.com