Breast cancer and sewing

imageI thought you might be interested in another sewing project ie breast cushions for Zonta ( I’ve blogged about Zonta before. Zonta is an international women’s group with a mandate to advance the political, social, economic, educational and health status of women around the world.

I am a member of the Sydney Breakfast Club and currently hold the position of Chair of Services. Translated, I coordinate our two major service programs. This post is about our breast cushions.


The kidney shaped satin breast cushion was the brain child (I understand) of the Botany Club (Sydney). The idea of the cushion is to use it to relieve the pressure on the mastectomy/lumpectomy wound, caused by the likes of seat belts and bed clothes. But I believe patients have used them in a million different ways because they are soft and light.

The cushions are made in a variety of shades including a taupe that is suitable for males. The satin is bought by the bolt and pre cut into kidney shapes, ready to be sewn. We have a band of fantastic volunteers who construct the shells to the point where they are ready to be stuffed. Before they are completed, the Zonta logo is ironed on.


Three times a year we meet as a group, on a Saturday to hold what we affectionately call a ‘stuffing event’ and we stuff and sew closed, about 150 cushions.


While we are stuffing, another group wraps individual cushions in cellophane and ties a ribbon around the package.


The individual packages are then grouped into bundles of about 50 and distributed to 3 hospitals in Sydney where surgery is performed for cancer of the breast.


When the patient returns from surgery, there is a wrapped breast cushion with best wishes from Zonta, waiting on her pillow. Unfortunately  our supply never meets the demand. So if anyone out there has a hankering to sew some shells, I’d love to hear from you.


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