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Making Art Of Cups

Breast cancer remains one of the more serious health problems on Long Island. Each year, an average of 1,265 cases are reported in Nassau County, with more than 200 annually ending in death. 

However, Adelphi University’s renowned Statewide Breast Cancer Hotline and Support Program is determined to combat this disease, not just through the hotline but also through such endeavors as the highly-popular Creative Cups program. Long Island women, either breast cancer survivors or those with friends or family members who have battled the disease, have created brassieres to highlight the urgency of the problem. 

Roslyn resident Jodi Charak has created a design she calls “2 Cups of Flower.”

“Several years ago I decided to learn to knit,” Jodi said. “I went to a local knitting store and sat with the owners until I could do the knit stitch. I bought a skein of yarn and went home to knit my first scarf. I couldn’t stop knitting. ‘One more line,’ became something I would say more than once a day. I still can’t stop.

“My mother is an expert knitter. Over the years, she has made more sweaters, blankets, scarves, hats and baby clothes than I can remember. I still have the baby afghan and the sweaters and hats she made for each of my children for their trips home from the hospital when they were born. She knit some gorgeous things. No pattern was too detailed or too intricate. I wish I had saved more.

“These days, I find myself calling my mother to help me decipher knitting language, to figure out how much yarn to buy, or talk about a new knitting project I am dying to start. My mom’s hands are somewhat arthritic now and she doesn’t knit anymore. I’ve actually made a few things for her. Recently, my mom gave me a box of old knitting needles, which belonged to her and to my grandmother. I really get a lot of pleasure knitting with those needles—thinking of how many different things were created with them over the years.

“I would like to dedicate this bra to my mom, a breast cancer survivor and inspirational knitter,” Charak said.  

Her work, along with dozens of other bras from the Creative Cups program, will be showcased at Adelphi University on March 14 and auctioned as part of Adelphi NY Statewide Breast Cancer Hotline and Support program.

Creative Cups, now in its third year, “encourages artistic expression in celebration of the lives of those living with breast cancer and those we have lost to this terrible disease,” according to the organization’s website. For more information, visit http://www.adelphi.edu/nysbreastcancer/index.html.