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September 30, 2013

Coffee & Canvas to host Painted Bra Project fundraiser

An item typically found in the top drawer of a woman’s dresser might sound like an unlikely canvas to most artists.

Sanda Bishop would beg to differ. She knows art comes in all forms.

The owner of Coffee & Canvas in Rogersville believes painting a woman’s brassiere for charity is the perfect way to uplift the thousands of women fighting breast cancer across the nation as well as the more than 2.8 million breast cancer survivors.

Bishop’s shop, located at 16426 U.S. 72 in Rogersville, is a place that opens all the human senses — bright painted canvases with whimsical and creative characters cover the walls and the aroma of fresh coffee fills the air.

“You want me to show you two bras I painted?” Bishop asked.

As she carefully removed each one from the plastic that surrounded them, she explained her vision. “This is an eagle,” she said. “It reminds me of Isaiah 40:31.”

But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; they shall walk, and not faint.”

The painted bra is in homage to her first husband Craig Robitzsch. “My first husband passed of cancer,” she said. “It was hard, but we made lemonade out of lemons. That was his favorite verse. I knew I wanted to do something inspiring with the eagle, but also fun like the eyes. Yet, something that was meaningful.”

Bishop also painted a second bra. She calls it Amazing Grace. The bra features a whimsical girl playing a cello with the musical notes to “Amazing Grace.”

The bras were created to give other women ideas that could be used at an event hosted by Bishop and her friend Brandi Angus, known as Uplift the Girls, a part of the Painted Bra Project.

Uplift the Girls was an idea Angus wanted to bring to fruition, but she wasn’t sure how to go about it. Then, she heard about the Painted Bra project.

The Painted Bra Project is an art and awareness fundraiser that raises money for breast cancer awareness. Proceeds are donated to the Liz Hurley Breast Cancer Fund. Artist Anna Braden of Huntsville founded the Painted Bra Project in 2011.

Bishop, now remarried to Bruce Bishop of Muscle Shoals, said she wants to help any way possible. “I want to give back,” she said. “The women can paint crazy, funny things. They can paint whatever they want to do.”

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