Friday, February 27, 2009

Road Kill?

The bear I'm working on, is looking like road kill, according to my daughter! Oh dear, the poor thing has all his limbs attached and I've added a locline *spine*, which is protruding from his body as the epoxy glue dries. I suppose Laurel is right, it really does look like it's been hit by a car! She must be almost in Hong Kong now, she flew out of Melbourne late last night, heading back to England. There were tears at the airport again, I thought it would be easier this time, (been there, done that), but no. I wonder how long it will be before she comes back again? I think it will depend on how well she can save her money, as she wants to travel Australia when she returns. How wonderful to be so free! She seems to be able to find work whenever she needs it, and then travels where she wants!

I'll be seeing Laurel in September, I'm flying over for Hugglets, Teddies 2009 and then I'll be teaching two workshops, one in Scotland and the other in Somerset. I really must get onto making a sample and sending it off to Bear Basics. Susan Davies is organising both workshops, she did such a wonderful job last year, at very short notice. No doubt this year with plenty of time, they will be even better! I'm planning a Polar Bear for these workshops, at the request of last year's ladies :) I bought some lovely alpaca from Susan, which I made Yuki in, so this bear will have the same coat. It's a lovely *dirty* white, I don't like a really stark white for my bears, I think this is just perfect.

It's an overcast morning today, I wonder if we are in for any rain? We could really do with a nice, big downpour, we're in drought, and have been for a number of years. Our dam hasn't filled to overflowing for a few Winters now, things are looking so very dry. I feel for those in Victoria, again, this weekend they're in for another horror time, with high winds, and temperatures and a crisp, crisp countryside already burning!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Old Is New Again

Today I cleared the junk off the top of my old Singer treadle sewing machine, vacuumed away the cobwebs in the workings and gave the whole thing a good sponge down. I wanted to see how this wonderful old machine sewed, after years doing service as a telephone table! Oh my! I'd forgotten just how beautifully she worked, after very little adjusting she was sewing like a dream, and had no difficulty at all handling the very thick, alpaca, fur fabric I was using. She makes a lovely gentle sound as she works, no electric motor, just the rythmic sound of the sewing mechanisms, such a wonderful way to sew a bear, and a little light exercise while you're doing it. I bought this machine a long time ago when we were living with no electicity, it cost all of eleven dollars! I don't think it had been used all that much, the booklet was immaculate, and all the accessories were present, in fact it looked like it was fresh from the Singer factory!

Monday, February 23, 2009

A New Bear in the Bush

At last I have him finished! This is Bart, so named because he looks a bit mischievous. His coat is gloriously shaggy, English mohair, which has been hanging around in my stash for a while, waiting for the right bear........ and here he is! You'd have to agree, he has a bit of a wild look in his eyes and a little bit of cheek. There are more details available on my website:

The weekend was spent sewing another bear, which is shaping up nicely, I'm still tweeking this pattern, so it's another large bear from the design. I go through phases in my bear making, no doubt soon, I'll be back in miniature mode. It's a good thing to mix things up, better for my body. When the big bears become too physically strenuous, I return to making small and miniature bears, but they have their own challenges, they are extremely fiddly, and at times they drive me nuts, trying to get my big hands to work with such small pieces!

Sunday afternoon was spent doing a bit more building, eventually we may even finish this house! Everything takes so long!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Getting There

I have almost finished another large bear, the pattern is the same as Yuki, but the bear is entirely different. I love giving each of the bears I create, their own character, so, even when I use the same pattern, each bear is unique. I haven't named this one yet, I'm hoping inspiration will hit before I've finished him. I'm working on bears for The Sydney Teddy Bear Show, next month, which is looming fast! I've also just submitted a project to Australian Bear Creations magazine, something a little different to what I usually make, who wants to be in a box? But you will have to wait til the magazine comes out, to see it, as I forgot to get a photo before I sent it off. If I get this new bear finished today, his photos will be up tomorrow, hopefully.

Monday, February 16, 2009


I've just picked and eaten my first apple of the season! What a relief! The apples available from the stores have been so awful, all soft and pulpy. The "Akane" apple I had today, was crisp and fresh tasting, with that beautiful, new apple twang. We're lucky we got any apples at all this year, as early on in the season we had a possum getting into the orchard. He was nipping off all the flower buds on some of the trees and the rose buds too. We did manage to catch him before he'd eaten everything and he was relocated a long way away. We had a possum living with us for a while, we rescued him from the road after his mother was killed. He was such a sweet thing, they are so undeservedly maligned here in Australia, especially in rural areas. If only people took the time to actually know them they would realise that they are intelligent animals with heaps of character.

Sunday, February 15, 2009


I thought you might like to see a photo of Ralph, he's a very inspiring companion for a bear maker! He's like a big shaggy bear himself. He looks alot like the Sloth bears in India, these days, with the long whispy hair on his ears ( he never used to have that ). Even old man dogs get hairy ears! :D

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Little Sweeties

Just look at these little sweeties, they have been reared in the eaves of our house. I don't know how many swallows nest on our house each year but we seem to have so many flying around here! At times I feel like we're under attack, they dive bomb us and scream in our ears when ever we get too close to them!

a Blog debut

Well here is Yuki my Blog debutante! I'm so pleased with him, his face looks so gentle. I whipped out this morning and snapped a few photos, I particularly like his rear view, it looks so cheeky! There are more photos and information on my website.

Friday, February 13, 2009

A Witches Day

It's just occurred to me that it's Friday 13th and guess what? There's another one next month! I know this because I'm fiying over to Melbourne on the 13th of March to teach some workshops. A couple of two day gigs at Bear Essence,, in Boronia. It will be an interesting few days as it will be a mixed bag of all the bears I've taught there over the past couple of years, an opportunity for people to make a bear that they missed out on first time round. I just hope I can get my head around all the different techniques, there will be some that I haven't done for a while.
While I'm over there, I'll be able to catch up with my son, Sam, who has just moved to Melbourne to start a course at RMIT in computer animation. Sometimes I have to wonder where this child of mine came from, with his wonderful aptitude in all things computer related, while his mother struggles with the most basic of tasks! Well at least I can manage a bit of a Blog and I can tinker with my little website ;)

A new polar bear

Today I finished my new polar bear, I haven't been able to do his photo shoot yet, as it got dark before I could get out with him. His name is Yuki, Japanese for snow. I'm really pleased with the way he has turned out, and I can't wait to get his picture up on here.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Well Here Goes!

Here we are in 2009 a good year to start a Blog, no? I really have to wonder why I'm embarking on this venture, my diary keeping attempts in the past have been very spasmodic. It will be interesting to see how long I can keep it up!
I've been working on a polar bear which is getting very close to completion, so perhaps he will be my inaugural Blog bear :)