Hello my friends, I would like to present your name nominations for the bamboo swing top. I’m honoured to have 4 inspiring women lovingly nominated by their family and friends. They all epitomize the words spoken by Roshi Joan Halifax and Brené Brown:

“Strong Back, Soft Front, Wild Heart”

I’d rather not shoulder the impossible task of picking just one of these amazing ladies so I’m asking for your help. Please vote for the one who touches your heart. I know you’ll want to pick them all, just like me, so let’s do this together!

Let me introduce you to each of the nominees:


Leslie is nominated by her good friend, Mary Bouchard. “I have known Leslie since we were in early grade school in Orillia. She’s a firecracker, just like her mom! The first of my friends to marry her hubby and become  a mother, she was the best resource to call for questions when I became pregnant. As well, she has a photographic memory and recalls those things I have long forgotten.

Leslie has had many health and personal challenges. She lost her first child after delivery which was completely heartbreaking. As well, she has further challenges that she takes on with gusto and bravery, and beats the odds. She’s a rock! Leslie is presently battling ovarian cancer with strength and conviction.

On the business side of Leslie’s life, she started as an x-ray technician and decided the entrepreneurial life was for her. She invented a cloth diaper and diaper pant while home caring for her kids that she patented. Rexall bought the patent and put her “Bundles of Love” on their shelves. They gave her a red Mazda Miata as part of the deal. Leslie exudes bundles of love in everything she does. She became a TV producer and brought the King of the Que – Ted Reader to TV programming. She invented a perfume fragrance. And if that is not enough, she’s an independent marketing guru and developed campaigns for Pepsi.

An amazing woman and powerhouse, as well as a great mom, partner and friend to so many. She lights a fire and flame wherever she goes. The swing top in its vibrant raspberry colour is so fitting to my dear friend who lights up everyone’s life she touches. Love you Leslie!”


Heidi is nominated by fellow breast cancer survivor and friend, Kristin Ratcliffe. “My friend, Heidi, was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer when she was 38 years old with an 18 month old at home. She persevered through many rounds of treatments and surgeries. Against all odds, after cancer treatments, DIEP reconstruction and without the help of fertility treatments, she trail blazed the medical system with her unicorn baby, and now has 2 beautiful sons at home. Heidi works hard to find the balance in life between family and work as a massage therapist while offering support to those going through a new cancer diagnosis. She remains actively in touch with her cancer sisters and is always available to talk with those newly diagnosed.”


Amalia is nominated by her daughter, Sandra Butler. “My Mom is the most kind-hearted person I know. Through her example, she has created a ripple effect of kindness in her children and grandchildren. She was born on a farm in Spain in 1943, the youngest of 10 children. Her father died before she was 10. Shortly after, her mother went blind so she was raised by the eldest daughter. She moved to Gibraltar with her eldest sister and husband who legally adopted her. She went to school there and eventually married my father.

In her early 30’s, she left her whole family to immigrate to Canada with my father and 3 children and worked hard to give us many opportunities. She has always selflessly helped anyone in her family who needed help. Not long after we immigrated, she brought the sister who raised her to Canada when her husband died. My aunt lived with our family all our lives. My Mom took care of her through Alzheimer’s, 10 years at home, as her primary caregiver and then 2 years in a home where she visited twice a day to feed her until she passed away in her arms. I don’t know anyone who is as caring as she is.”


Cristina is nominated by her daughter, Chris Klerian. “My mom, Cristina (aka Tete) was a power force! She was the type of person you’d always want at your party. Tete was also incredibly generous and giving, and constantly looked for ways to help others who were less advantaged. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in the late 1980s, when medical technology was not as developed as it is now. Although she died in 1999 at the tender age of 51, her three daughters have carried her loving legacy ever since. I know she would be honoured to have this beautiful piece of clothing named after her, and she would definitely wear it! Thank you for considering the ‘Cristina’ top.”

And there you have our 4 nominees. I don’t want to frame this as though there’s only one winner because they’re all winners. All are women who are living or have lived ordinary, yet extraordinary lives, true to themselves, full of compassion and love, and leaving a lasting impression on others.

Think of it as choosing one name to embody the strength and resilience, yet softness and breathability of bamboo.

And, hopefully, there’ll be many more designs to come to capture the names of all the amazing women out there.

How to vote

Please cast your vote in the comments section below or email me at colleen@cokanna.ca or send me a message on Facebook or Instagram.

In the meantime, you can pre-order the Bamboo Swing Top, name forthcoming! Estimated delivery date is July 15th.

Pre-order Swing Top Here

Until next week,

~ Colleen

Colleen Kanna, Photo by Anna Epp Photography

I’m a recovering Chartered Accountant and Breast Cancer Champion turned Fashion Designer. My COKANNA Canadian-made bamboo clothing is all about comfort and style. Giving back to the community is important to me so I support Rethink Breast Cancer’s metastatic breast cancer education, support, and advocacy work.