The Gutsy Bears Story

So you may have seen I have been knitting little gutsy bears and the like with stoma’s or without depending on the request. These have a few different reasons behind why I make them and I thought I would take the time to explain why they have come into being!

So as some of you may have read last year about the Hambleton and Richmondshire Ostomy Support Group that myself and two gentlemen pestered our stoma care nurses about setting up. We are now into our second year which is pretty fantastic, last year was a bit of a learning curve and we heavily relied on our nurses to help with the running of things etc but we are hoping to be more pro-active and do things ourselves. We had a suggestion box on our very first meeting and some of the suggestions were things as simple as meeting up for a cuppa and cake or going out as a group for a Christmas meal.

gutsy bears pricelistThe meal is what we have chosen to run with as our last scheduled meeting of the year is in October so this will not only break up the gap but allow those who may not venture out much over the winter months or would just like to be social again before January’s meeting. We are trying to raise as much funds as we can towards making this meal as cheap (or hopefully free) for the entire group or at least who wants to attend. We have held a raffle and are planning on having another at the next meeting in August, but that only raises so much money and wouldn’t be enough alone…

So the gutsy bears were created! I have been suffering with poor mental health and I have been looking for things to distract my mind that was fairly monotonous and gave me a quick sense of achievement. I have knitted on and off throughout my life and get a lot of enjoyment out of it – when it’s going well obviously! But that is the same for everything and everyone right? I’m quite lucky the gutsy bears don’t seem to drive me insane as much which is clearly a good thing!

I have used a free pattern (hence the fact they aren’t expensive to buy) which I have amended by using different thickness yarn and sized needles, obviously adding in the stoma’s or hearts. As each one is handmade they are all unique and finished off with a little bow. These aren’t really toys but small children over 3 may be okay with them as long as there isn’t the key-ring or spoon charm as if they came loose they could be a choking hazard. I can personalise them with where your stoma is and that is part of the standard gutsy bear price, but I have made a boxer, penguins and a unicorn –  I’m currently working on some other ideas so please keep checking my social media for images.

To order the bears just drop me a message with:

  • a colour or design you have in mind and I will check my stock to see if I can do it
  • whether you would like a stoma (please tell me what side yours is on) or a heart
  • if you would like a key-ring or a spoon charm

We have had a good response so far from people buying the bears and I would love for it to continue so we can be able to enjoy the meal without individuals worrying if they can afford it or having to work out what they owe. Ideally we would raise enough money to go towards activities next year like a possible meet up for afternoon tea or something. Just because we are all at the group due to having an ostomy doesn’t mean it should always be about ostomies!!

My favourite reason for someone buying bears was from Bexie; she is due to go in for some more surgery soon and her daughter is obviously anxious. So she bought two bears one with a stoma and one with a heart so that they can each have one whilst she is in hospital to offer comfort and they each have something that represents what they are going through. I’m not going to lie when she told me I cried it is such a beautiful thing to do and I am glad I was able to facilitate that.

gutsy bears


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