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Strawbeary designs Strawbeary designs
Lancashire
Posts: 25

Hi guys, Im new here and have been busy reading and gathering lots of tips from this great forum! My question is what is the best book to buy if I want to make my own patterns? Ive made a few bears off patterns ive bought and they have turned out well but I would like to try and sell a couple so I want to design my own pattern.
I work in sewing so already have a good idea about seam allowences and how patterns fit together but I have never made a pattern myself! bear_original Helen.x

jellybiehn Posts: 13

Hello,
I have just started out with bear making myself and have been gathering up some books. I also wanted to get into designing my own patterns so I was trying to find ones that focused on that, and have found 'teddy bear art-how to design and make great teddy bears' by Jennifer Laing very helpful. It is easy to understand and has a lot of diagrams to follow, as well as proper ratios and techniques. I did not have a sewing background at all before I began with bears so it has been a good 'bear basics' for me.

I have a few more on the way and will let you know if I find them helpful as well. I'm sure you will get some more great suggestions from people here. I also found that the library on this site has answered any bear related questions I have come up with as well.

dangerbears Dangerbears
Wisconsin
Posts: 6,016
Website

I second the recommendation of the Laing book. It's great for getting ideas and techniques for your original designs.

Becky

Strawbeary designs Strawbeary designs
Lancashire
Posts: 25

Hi Jellybiehn and Becky! Thanks for the advice! I've been looking on here and found some recommendations, I've ordered Jennifer Laing-How to design and make bears, Nancy Tillberg- 101 bears to make (Wow was that expensive! bear_shocked ), Ted Menten-step by step guide to making teddy bears and one by Julie K Owen on minature bears! Can't wait to get them and start reading! bear_grin

jellybiehn Posts: 13

Oh good, I was just looking at '101 bears' today. Even used on amazon it is still quite expensive so I decided to hold off for now. Please let me know what you think of it. The description and all the reviews look great.

dangerbears Dangerbears
Wisconsin
Posts: 6,016
Website

You're going to be well set, Strawbeary! Every book has different ideas and different details, so I think you'll find each one to be helpful.  bear_flower

Becky

Plum Cottage Bears Plum Cottage Bears
Long Beach, CA
Posts: 2,151

Plum Cottage Bears Cute Animal Ambassador

I agree with the previous comments.  The teddy bear making books by Jennifer Laing and Nancy Tillberg are the best that I have found.  I used to have a shop, and Jennifer Laing taught there as a special guest instructor when she came to California.  I would take her classes, too, and learned a lot about pattern design and creativity from her.  Additionally, before the recession, my company sold teddy bear making books and Australian teddy bear pattern magazines on the internet, internationally.  The books by Jennifer Laing and Nancy Tillberg were always in demand.  Nancy Tillberg put her book, 101 Bears to Make, on a DVD.  She may still have the DVD available, so perhaps her name could be Googled to see if she still has a website.  I believe she is into photography now.  Anyway, I still refer to the books by Jennifer Laing and Nancy Tillberg.  Hugs, Gail

Strawbeary designs Strawbeary designs
Lancashire
Posts: 25

Jellybeihn I will let you know!..it does seem to be in demand!
Becky, that's exactly what I'm hoping for, it's the pattern making that's gonna stump me so the more advice I can get the better!
Thanks for the advice Gail!, I will google her and see what comes up!xx

edmondnutmeg Padfield bears
Derbyshire
Posts: 1,343
Website

Wow I have always wanted a 101 book but could never find one I could afford - well gel  bear_grin I first bought a kit and when it didn't look a bit like the picture I just spent a couple of days drawing out shapes and trying them in scrap I actually really enjoy the process. I think the hardest thing sometimes is getting the proportions right and having a good idea how much the type/length of fur pile can make to finished design and knowing where/how to make allowance for this. 
There is also another technique you might want to try which uses sculpture. In a nutshell (the process not the bear - now that would be difficult!) you model a bear then cover each part (head, body, an arm and leg) in masking tape then using a scalpel cut it off where you would expect a seams to be and then take a pattern from the pieces. Again it does need a bit of understanding about darts ect' and is not as simple as it may sound.
Anyway good luck and don't worry if it doesn't work out how you would like the first few goes like anything else - practice makes perfect bear_original
michelle

Strawbeary designs Strawbeary designs
Lancashire
Posts: 25

Hi Michelle! Yes I was in two minds weather to buy the book as it was pricey!..haven't told the other half yet!  bear_tongue
That's a very good idea about the model first! I've made a couple of bears off a pattern and love them, made them in mohair but I would like to make my own.
It's all very confusing as I have loads of images of bears that I love but I don't want to 'copy' them, the pattern I've used I've purposely tried to copy it just to see if my bear would look anything like it's supposed to..just to give me an idea if it's a hobby I could be good at!  bear_original 
Helen x

Richelle Nicole Dollusions
Parkton, NC
Posts: 11
Website

I almost bought the 101 Bears to make book last night, but thought maybe Santa would leave it under the tree for me!  bear_grin

Strawbeary designs Strawbeary designs
Lancashire
Posts: 25

Lol..Richelle! I've just finished looking through it and I can say its brilliant! Lots if info and also the ted Menten book is great! Have got two weeks off for Christmas so loving having the time to just sit and sew! Hopefully get some finished then I can start working on my own pattern! Helen xx

Richelle Nicole Dollusions
Parkton, NC
Posts: 11
Website

Helen, if Santa doesn't bring it ill have to get it for myself! Lol. I bought the Ted Menton book, it should be here any day. Yay! Hope you have fun making bears during the holiday  bear_grin

mandyb6422 Posts: 2

hi everyone
i bought mine on EBay,i paid quite a bit,i wont say in case little eyes are around !but wanted it so much i paid,when it arrived and looking into first pages and i was annoyed to find a library stamp on the edge,i couldnt  believe it it said £17.99 and i paid 3 times as much,i was digusted but i had to pay duty tax for it to be sent over.it wasn't worth returning it,this is just a gentle warning,i am determined i will use it.anyway it was a good book fortunately,well you live and learn,you would think i would have learnt by now(im in my 50's!)x

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