LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - When going through treatment some cancer patients suffer hair loss. That can be hard to deal with, and even worse when it’s cold.
One Longview woman is addressing that problem one patient at a time.
Betty Smart knows knitting.
“Have been doing it a long time,” she confirmed.
You could say she knows it seamlessly; literally because ...
“You put it on these kind of needles,” she said.
She uses double-pointed needles.
“You put it on three needles and knit with the fourth needle,” Betty explained.
That trick results in a seamless cap with no bothersome ridge, since ...
“When you lose your hair, apparently, the scalp is very sensitive,” Betty stated.
She keeps cancer patients going through treatment in mind when buying yarn.
“I don’t use anything special except soft,” Betty said.
She doesn’t spend huge piles of cash on yarn but ...
“I buy it locally,” she revealed.
And she makes it locally with a knitting group at Buckner Westminster Place in Longview.
“So you guys are the Knit-wits,” I asked the group of five women.
“We’re the Knit-wits,” they agreed.
“And you admit it? Wow,” I offered.
“Yep,” they laughed.
She stays ahead.
“I try to knit more in the summer when the weather is hot, and they don’t need them,” Betty revealed.
She’s not really sure how long it takes to make a cap.
“I think it would take a lot longer than six hours,” Betty stated.
She never sees the patients at the cancer center who wear the caps.
“I just leave them with the volunteers usually,” Betty said.
Would she know one of her caps if she saw it on someone, a secret marking maybe?
“No,” Betty said.
“A signature somehow?” I asked her.
“No,” she laughed.
She says it’s been a couple decades since she learned how to make a cap in the round.
“Many years ago, I saw an interview of a lady who lived in Jacksonville, Texas, on KLTV,” Betty revealed.
KLTV got them in touch with each other, and she shared the cap in the round pattern with Betty.
Betty kind of hopes a viewer will ask her for the pattern and put some double-pointed needles to use.
We’ll get with that person in a couple decades.
Betty tells us she’s never made a cap in one sitting, but when she gets enough of them, she takes them in to the Longview Cancer Center and donates them for chemo patients.