Category Archives: teddy bears

Saving Sid, bear restoration

I haven’t been able to do much crafting due to some health issues for a while, and recently I have been thinking about returning to my bear making.  Sid the BearI have always been interested in restoring bears and have re-stuffed, and attached limbs and eyes for my family’s bears, but have never really found the courage to buy a bear that needs restoration.  It seems that the decision was made for me as my parents brought back a present for me from Devon, Sid. It’s a little daunting as he does have a fair amount of damage, and I am going to document my progress with saving Sid here so if anyone can give me any kind of advice about what to do (or what not to do) as well as any indication of his age or how he should look (I am not so sure about his eyes), please let me know!

He is 18″ tall, fully joined and has a long-ish pile.  From the look of it, he’s been in the sun as his head is faded more than his body which is a golden colour.
He has a velvet type fabric paws and are sound, apart from a little hole in one foot.
There are some thread bear patches on his head, back and body and he is currently chilling out in the freezer for a couple of days just in case there are any little visitors in him (ick)

Sid's brains

Oh no! Sid’s brains are showing!

Sid’s braaaaaaaaaaaaainnns are showing!
See, on the right there’s a little thread bear patch on his head showing the wood wool stuffing inside.
His ears are OK, if a little crooked.  I think that I’ll probably replace the wool stuffing in his head so I can mend/stabilise the hole by his ear – I imagine that will sort out his head shape so it isn’t so squashed.  I can also give the ears a little manipulation so they sit the right way.



Sid's Eyes

Sid’s Eyes

This is a close up of his eye.  They are plastic and I am not sure if they are original.  They seem a little too big for his face and look like they have either been chewed on by a dog or bashed on some concrete.  There’s also a bit of a dark patch around them, so maybe someone decided to paint in some eyes – or it’s just dirt and gunge.
I am not sure how I could sand/polish them if they are original to him because they are plastic and the damage seems to be quite deep.
I’d love to remove these and replace them with a more appropriate pair.




Sid's Back

Sid’s Back

Here’s his back – there’s the Dean’s label and it’s clear that someone has tried to sew up his back with some cross stitches.  Poor little frankenbear.  You can see the old repair stitching as they used a bright yellow thread – so at least I can see it clearly when remove them!
There are more thread bear patches on his back.
I’ll probably take out the stuffing, then attach a similar colour fabric as a backing then darn the holes to stop them from growing any further.
If there is a better way, I’d be grateful for any advice or suggestions

I think that his body and his limbs are stuffed with kapok and while I’d add a bit of extra stuffing to make his body more stable, I won’t do a hard fill as I do like his wrinkly tummy.
He also has a growler which still makes a little squeaky growl when you turn him upside down.

Dean's bear tags

Dean’s bear tags

Here is a close up of his tags.
On one side there is Dean’s Childsplay Toy Babysafe
On the other side there is the image of two dogs fighting over a rag book with Made in Great Britain Dean’s Rag Book Co. Ltd on them

If anyone knows how old this makes him or if there is a type, please let me know.
So this is Sid, stand by for an update after he’s finished chilling in the freezer!



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A new year, a new challenge

Christmas has been and gone, the decorations have been put away and the house would be looking a little sad if it wasn’t for the several inches of snow that we had last night.  Being the UK, this means that everything has ground to a halt, no post, no papers, few trains and the road has been turned into an ice rink.

I came across the Creative Every Day, which encourages people to be more creative and blog about it – given my total lack of bloggery recently, it seemed like a good idea.  While it isn’t documented here, I do actually sew, embroider or do more sewing most nights, so I am hoping that this will give me the push needed to reveal more.

For Christmas I gave several bears as gifts, this bear is a variation on my raspberry coloured bear I had made earlier, but this time I made him with an open mouth.  It was my first try on making an open mouth bear because it can be tricky as some bears end up looking like the joker, demented or just downright scary.   Thankfully I managed to achieve the look I wanted – smiley and friendly.

Ohai DaveBear!  What are you up to?
He is made out of a pale honey coloured mohair which had blue tips – it was a much brighter blue than the photo and looked a little odd, so using my new airbrushing kit I knocked back the colour with some grey.  His nose is needlefelted, as is the definition around his mouth.  You can’t see it, but I also managed to needlefelt up to make a roof of his mouth too.  This was the first time I had done needlefelting on a bear and it was so much fun.  As much as I love embroidery there is a certain element of suspense when you are embroidering a nose because you never know whether it will be even, so needlefelting is easy and effective (although watch your fingers – those needles really hurt!).
His eyes are airbrushed to give some definition and he has been needlesculpted with a little bit of scissor sculpting.
Here is DaveBear under the Christmas tree.  I was quite sad to see him go because he looked so cheerful, but he is going to a good home where I am sure that he’ll get up to a lot of mischief!
More projects to come…
Ohai DaveBear!, originally uploaded by Nicola’sNeedles.

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