The First Flat Friends Annual Members Weekend
In September 2017, Flat Friends both new and familiar gathered for the first ever Members weekend in the beautiful surroundings of the Penny Brohn Centre, where we had a fun-packed agenda (all run by Flat Friend members), as well as loads of time to chill out and relax, chat over coffee or wine, and enjoy the gardens.
See the sections below for galleries, just click on any image to see it full size.
Open to all Flat Friends, all sessions and events over the weekend were completely free to attend. The only costs involved were meals, drinks, & accommodation for those staying over, but you could simply drop in for the day or part of it if you wanted – and we were so pleased some did!
FIRST ANNUAL REPORT PRESENTATION
We rounded off the day with the Trustees delivering their first Annual Report, presenting how we manage the charity, what we’ve done since we founded, and our plans for the future. Grateful thanks also to our admins, without whom we could not do what we do!
You can download a copy of the Annual Report Presentation here Annual review 2017 v3.2 and if you forgot your feedback form or have something to add, download on the link below then email it to Gilly Cant on firstname.lastname@example.org
FASHION SHOW & TELL
Saturday evening brought yet another highlight of our weekend together, with the Flat Friends favourite flattering Fashion Show & Tell. Or FaST for short – certainly not a term you could have applied to the the Never-Ending Raffle, but hey, everyone’s a winner in Flat Friends, right? lol!
The idea was to wear something we liked and felt confident in, and do a little turn saying why we liked it and where we got it – assuming we could remember, of course. It brought laughter (THAT hat did a few rounds), a few emotional tears, endless admiration and roars of approval!
The range and variety of styles proved that, even though we have all faced the same surgery, and made the same decisions to live without reconstruction, we are all utterly unique. We have different tastes in style, different body shapes, different views on whether or how much prostheses are part of our wardrobe.
What we have in common is we are all living, loving, and dressing with confidence. What unites us is a shared warmth and understanding, and it’s this that created a positive atmosphere in which nearly every single member stood in the middle of the Garden Room and spoke in front of everyone, many of whom we had only met face-to-face the day before, and some brave souls only a few hours earlier. We are women with chutzpah, panache, and shedloads of style!
There were bold patterns, stripes, layers, rich fabrics, interesting necklines, strategic pleats and frills, and including several items from pre-mastectomy wardrobes that had carried over nicely into a world of chests smooth and streamlined or Knitted Knockered. Among the most memorable was the member who was wearing the outfit she wore to a function two weeks before her bilateral mastectomy, and then again two weeks after without reconstruction. Her patterned maxi dress and bold jacket had become her ‘go-to outfit’ as it always made her feel confident – so confident in fact that she had attended this weekend on her own, having never met any other Flat Friends before.
Our Fashion Show & Tell, and the weekend as a whole, was a runaway success – for many reasons, but perhaps one of them was because we proved to ourselves and each other that we are not part of some secret club; we are all just normal women who happen to have found a way of adjusting to a different body shape and staying true to ourselves.
We haven’t taken the road less travelled, but it is the one that no one points out on the map for you when you start out.
Breasts do not maketh the woman, but a little lipstick and an outfit that makes her feel good goes a long way!