Adelphi gets a big bravo for stirring up support for breast cancer awareness in a creative way. Actually, make that a big bra-vo.
For the second time, the Garden City university is sponsoring its "Creative Cups" display and auction – an array of creatively decorated bras – with proceeds going to the Adelphi NY Statewide Breast Cancer Hotline and Support Program.
"People are taking ordinary bras and embellishing them, and turning them into works of art," says Lyn Dobrin, spokesperson for the organization.
Past participants of the brazen bra display include those afflicted with breast cancer, relatives who choose to honor a relative or "people who just care," says Dobrin.
"I made my bra in honor of my 80-year-old grandma, Stella, who had breast cancer five years ago," says Garden City resident Alyssa Bieler, 23, one of this year's participants. "I essentially embroidered the entire bra with ribbon to make it look somewhat like Van Gogh's 'Starry Night' in order to tie in my grandma's name Stella, and then I wove her name in the side."
Some 240 decorated bras came in last year and that success has spread the word of the program. This year Miss USA Rima Fakih, in the midst of competing in the Miss Universe pageant, is submitting a personally decorated bra, organizers say. Bringing attention to such a cause is important to many.
"I just like the idea of supporting Adelphi's program because I know that breast cancer has a very significant impact on a woman's sense of identity," says Bieler.
Seeing the entries, it's clear that the decorated bras provide folly as well as thought-provoking and artistic takes on the disease that afflicts so many in our area.
"You are taking something so dreadful and bad, and you turn it into something that can bring a smile," says Dobrin. "It's cathartic for people."
Interested bra-artists need to purchase a 36D underwire bra, decorate the garment and submit it by Sept. 15 with a $25 registrant fee. Entries will be photographed for a keepsake book and be auctioned off at an event, which is set for March 15, 2011.
The organization currently has 100 decorated bras, with a goal of about 150 to 200 this year. Visit www.Adelphi.edu/nybreastcancer for more information.