I made my first bear in 1984, and started experimenting with my own patterns shortly after. I've made 46 bears so far, approximately (I did a quick count).
I sold 6 bears in a shop locally in 1987 or so. No fun working on commission! And I hated sewing the requested clothing!
I used mostly fabric store acrylic from '84 to '87, when I kind of slowed down. I had ordered a teeny bit of mohair by mail, sight unseen (pre internet!) and didn't really like it, or the way it sewed up. My old pattern looked awful in mohair!
I made a few here and there through the '90s, for friends. I didn't really start up again until 2003, when I made a bear for a play and ordered my first mohair online! Love online mohair shopping!! :dance: :dance: :dance:
Teddy Talk has made a huge difference in my bears! I have learned so much here. My style may be the same, but the finish is so much more professional thanks to you all! :hug:
I can't remember if I started making bears in 1995 or 96. I was working in a bear store and I got to do all the repairs. You can't believe how many manufactured bears come with problems. I got to meet some of the artists and enjoyed seeing all the artist bears. I was hooked! It wasn't long and my wonderful hubby paid for a class from Jennifer Laing for a birthday present and sent me with cash to buy mohair. And it was all a surprise. What a man! I was way over my head in the class but it got me headed in the right direction as a beginner. I still try to take classes, you learn so much, not only from the person teaching the class but from the rest of the people taking the class. It seems like there is always a new technique to learn.
Made my first one in 1998. Horrible little thing as were most that followed it that first year. I've always loved sewing, fabrics, crocheting, crafts, etc.
I'd get bored after a while and turn to something else. Bears are an endless challange for me and keeps me interested. Between designing new patterns and the great fun I have dyeing new colors/fabrics, I will be enjoying this for a LOOOOOOONG time!
I made my first crocheted bear in Nov. 2004, so just a little over a year. I have yet to make a fabric bear. I did buy some synthetic not too long ago, but wasn't very happy with it...so he's only halfway done. Kinda put it on the side for now. I finally did buy some mohair, but I'm not sure I'm gonna like it either! Well, I don't mean all mohair, just the one I chose. I ordered online and it doesn't look the same as the online pic. Oh, well. So, I have a LOT to learn still.
I've been making bears for about 1. 5 yrs. I haven't really sold any yet. Too slow making them, too busy selling sculptures and felties and I CAN"T THINK OF A COMPANY NAME!
But they are great to give away, and I don't really ever expect to make a living out of this. It's hard to make the same as I do in my full-time job. At least when I'm looking at how much I make per hour. But it's soo addicting, and if I can make some extra money, than this is a wonderfull hobby.
I'm sure glad I'm not the only sorta Newbie
I start to make bears ( felt bear, cotton fabric bear) on 2006.
But when I look back to them I feel like they are like kingdergarden school student work and look funny.
I make my first mohair teddy bear on Sept. 2007 by taking a class from a Taiwanese bear artist
Now I have made 11 bears....
I am still a newbie
I designed my first bear in August 1996, so technically it's been about 11 and a half years. Wow! I decided to call my bears New Avenue Crew after the street I lived on while I was growing up.
Way before that, in the late 1980s, I made four or five bears out of synthetic plush with the patterns from a book, but I wasn't entirely satisfied with them. I didn't make any for a few years while I got my degree, and then I took a mohair bear-making/finishing class from Claudia Wagner at a teddy bear convention and was instantly inspired to design and make my own using this wonderful material that was so much easier to work with!
I am a super slow bear maker (I'm really, really picky with my bears ), and I work full-time, so the combination translates to not many bears coming from the New Avenue Crew studio. I hope to have some time for them this summer...and I feel like I've been bitten by the bear bug again!
This is indeed a fascinating question...with equally fascinating answers!
I made bears back in the early 80's, but never sold them. Gave some away, kept (and still have) the rest. I went into professional photography full time, so the bear making came to a complete halt.
Then I switched gears and opened an antique store, which I still have today. Recently, like about 4 months ago, I found I so needed a hobby again, and the only one I ever really liked was bear making.
So I re-entered the world of teddy and I'm completely hooked. Even though I'm making some strange looking bears right now...I just love it! I can't see ever putting it down again.
PS I just noticed this thread started over two years ago. With so many of us newbies joining TT ...I think it's a great one to pick up again!!!
Just a newbee here as well, I made my first bear from my own pattern in March 2006, and my very first dog December 2006. Wow how the time flies though!!
Coming up on 12 years, 10 of which I have used only my own designs. Still love it. Still have lots of ideas in my head. Love working on the dogs, they are my favorite. Hobart Bears came from the 1st street I lived on in Detroit. The street has been long gone, but the bears keep on coming. I too am a slow teddy maker, only sewing by hand.
I have made dolls and bears from other peoples patterns and books sense around 1972 before that I made handmade jackets and tops for a shop. I mostly made dolls for several years in around 1986 when I first found out that I was preg. again I wanted to make my own pattern so I did and for a couple of years I just sold only a few time a year. In 1988 I staeted selling my bears full times but in 2000 I started having a lot of health problems and I had to cut it down quite a lot and now sense the stroke and heart attack in March I can't work on any and wouldn't you know it I have all these great ideas in my head and no way to get them out. lol Denise
ok well this is a thread that I have missed out on.
Let's see mum started making bears in 1982. She just celebrated 25 years in 2007.
I started helping her in 1985, doing just about anything she asked.
I started my own line in 1990. So I am fast approaching 20 years, in business. Now there is a scary thought for a 31 year old. I was 12 or 13 at the first bear show that I sold at. And to this day I hold the record for being th youngest artist at that show. There were others who were young, but I was the youngest artist ever. What a thing to be proud of... Memory lane it takes me back.