The colours that you will use the most will depend on the colours of your bears. We mainly use browns and blacks. We also have a selection of other colours, blue, greens, pinks, reds, golds, yellows, and the list goes on. But we also use these same paints to colour our bear eyes.
I don't care for kapok. Too much lint!
I use excelsior to stuff my heads firmly, it takes needle scuplting well, holds its shape, and it is much easier to push a needle through.
You can order it through uline, they also have a great selection of shipping supplies.
Here's the link to the excelsior:
http://www.uline.com/BL_1972/Excelsior- … =excelsior
Right now with the "real" job and school it can be hard to get bears made. I am also a computer tech for a friend. Her computer went down twice last week and I spent several hours on both days fixing things and answering questions. I also recently increased my "real" job work days from 2 to 3 because we needed the help at work. I figured I could fit in the extra day, due to the fact that we aren't doing any shows this spring. The schedule is packed, but sometimes I just stop working on everything else and work on bears. Good Luck!
I would agree with Bobbi about the wax. I have a Dressmaker from the 50s and it doesn't have any wax or polish. The finish is holding up great. I wouldn't worry about waxing it.
It could be that you have your tenison set too high. You might need to adjust the tenison on the bobbin as well, but only do that in about 1/16 or 1/8 turns of the screw on the bobbin holder.
Enjoy sewing with it.
Ok I added everyone to my blog. I am thinking that this year I will make the time to update my web site and start using my blog.
Here is the link to my blog:
There are times whern I find it hard to follow everyone's blog. I am hopeful that I will better be able to keep up with everyone.
Well this just goes to show that some people are thieves.
I allow people to make bears/rabbits/cat/etc for resale, fund raisers, etc. All I ask is that they credit me for the design, is that hard to do? All that needs to be done is to sew a tag in the tush. I don't allow them to re-produce or re-sell my patterns. Mass production/manufacturing is prohibited. There are exceptions only two re-seller that have my permission and they sell bear making supplies.
Thank you to those of you keeping your eyes peeled. I have stayed away from eBay due to all the changes that they have made lately. But now I know that I need to keep an eye on things I will pay better attention. The only user id that should be selling my (Jare Hare & Bears, Jared Monroe) or my mother’s (C. Riffenberg Bear Co., Jane Monroe) patterns on eBay is hare1990, that is my user id. If they are listed by any other user id they are illegal.
EBay shouldn't have a problem pulling an auction. They pulled one of my pattern auctions about a year ago and it took me six months to prove to them that I was the copyright holder. I lost sales and my eBay fees. I have since moved on to other venues. If I feel a listing is fishy, I have no problem reporting it. They should pull these auctions without question after all they pulled mine when one could clearly see that I was selling more of my own patterns.
I am selling my patterns on other venues and here is a list:
Bear Street – Dale Junker
If they are being sold on any other website they are illegal. There is one other legal venue that is selling my patterns.
If you ever find this happening again, please let me know. You can contact me @ email@example.com (preferred), firstname.lastname@example.org or mom, Jane Monroe, @ email@example.com.
Thanks again to all of those who have kept their eyes open to this stuff.
I remember in the late 80s and in the 90s that many miniature artists had no problem getting what their work was worth. Then entered the manufactured miniatures. That was a turning point for many artists. People could not see the difference between a manufactured mini and an artist made mini. Why was this one only $15.00 and this one $300. They did understand the work involved and the difference between someone getting paid $.50 a day to work and an artist.
No matter the size an artist made bear is worth the price the artist places on the bear. If a miniature artist is asking $300 for a 3" bear, then fine by me, as long as the workmanship is excellent. If a bear artist makes a 20" bears and is asking $600 for the bear it is worth $600. In the end, something is only worth what someone is willing to give you for it.
Understand, collectors today are much more sophisticated than collectors 20 or even 15 years ago. Information is more readily available via the internet and a greater awareness of artist teddy bears. Collectors are expecting more from artists in terms of designs, concepts, and personality of the bears. Long time collectors are downsizing collections, only collecting small pieces, or even just collecting those really special bears, no matter the size.
Just my rambling thoughts.
I went to IDEX but I didn't go to the breakfast... Too tired! I needed sleep.
I e-mailed the new editor for Teddy Bear & Friends for a copy of the TOBY list. Once I have it I will share with everybear.
IDEX was good! I enjoyed the break from the cold and snowy north.
I think I will become a snowbird as soon as I can afford it.
Understand one thing... I didn't read every post on this thread, but I have read enough to know that I will be listing my bears and bunnies for sale on etsy from now on. I would love to have the chance to have 2 bidders go after a piece and get more money, but not if I can be hung up on low DSR. Forget that!
Maybe we could replace the ebay link with an etsy link.
Let me be the first to say
Glad to see you joined us on here. :hug:
I am sure you will figure your way around here really fast.
I enjoyed class and I did finish my bear. Well, I just need to airbrush him. I will take and post pictures when I get a chance. :photo: But for the moment, I need to work on orders and class work. Yuck! At least I get to watch a movie for one class, but Netflix is having problems. So I don't know when I will get my movies. I might need to run to town to rent it. What fun that will be.
Well as most of you know I use excelsior for the majority of my stuffing. But I do mix in Fiber fill and I get a B grade fill from Monterrey Mills in Janesville, WI. Mom and I purchase about 60 to 80 pounds at a time. That will keep us going for at least a year maybe longer. It packs very tight, just ask Alison McKee, and doesn't get lumpy. It comes in 20 pounds bags. There are about four grades. The lowest grade (D) is barely processed and there are tons of lumps. The 3 (C) grade is ok, but not recommend, tends to be darker in color and that can show through in bears. The 2 (B) grade is good for all stuffing, the only problem is if you are stuffing a white or lighter colored bear it can show through, especially in the face. 1 (A) grade is the best and most expensive and is white so it is great on light colored fabrics. We usually only keep about one of these on hand. But we are able to drive to Janesville and pick it up. So while we don't pay shipping, we do spend gas. Most of the time we need to make a trip to Rockford for supplies, which is on our way back home. So that works for us.
If you have a tax id number you can register for wholesale pricing at airtex. I am sure the prices would be better.
I don't care for Brother machines myself. They punch hard into the fabric when you are sewing and I find that disconcerting. I have an old Dressmaker form the 50s. When I can I get my hands on unclaimed sewing machine repairs. Here in IL after 30 days any unclaimed repair can be sold to whomever wishes to pay for the repair costs. That is how I got my Dressmaker. In fact, there were 2 other Dressmakers that were available too, but I just didn't have the money to buy them. Now, I wish that I had bought them. My machine is a workhorse. I usually use a size 14~16 needle. The only time I have a problem with breakage is when I am sewing the ears on my bunnies and I forget to adjust the stitch length so I don't hit the wire.
Does anyone know how often you should replace the needle on your machine. I had one that I used for over a year. Then I realized one day that it wasn't sewing as well so I figured that I should change the needle.
I do have a less expensive Singer that I use as my back up machine when I need to take my Dressmaker in for repairs. Right now I have the Singer set up with a ruffler attachment. I am making rabbits that are dressed in a ruffled pinafore, there is no way that I am going to hand gather all of those skirts. Not when there is a sewing machine attachment that will do it for me.
Mom and I just recently purchase a Sidewinder. Which is a God Send! It is very rude of a sewing machine to run out of bobbin thread. Now instead of un-threading my machine so that I can wind bobbins on it, I grab the Sidewinder and get another spool of the same color thread and wind a new bobbin. That means that I can leave the top thread in the machine and it does save time! Wal-mart just got them about 2 weeks ago. I found ours at a local quilt shop.
Can anyone explain to me why they don't make a sewing machine that could take a spool of thread on the bottom for use everyday sewer? I don't mind winding bobbins , but really I do have better things to do with my time.
I stuff my legs and arms as far as I can before attaching them to the body. I then place the joints and attach to the body. Many times I am able to stuff to the bottom of the open seam. This way it makes it faster for me to complete the bunny or bear. You have better control over the shape and stuffing of the limb if you can completely stuff it before attaching. Due to the fact that I use lock nuts and bolts I can't completely stuff and shut a limb. Yes, I have tried expoy to set the bolt, but that is an extra step that requires at least 24 hours for the expoy to set. And then there are those times when the bolt would breakfree from the expoy. So in the end the expoy costs more and takes more time, so you really don't end up making the bear any faster. Now, if you know that you will use X number of discs of a list of sizes, then you could take a day and set up all of those bolts and discs. But even still there is the problem of the bolt breaking from the expoy and then you have to go in and open the limb back up and insert a new expoyed disc set or you just break down and use the rachet wrench and attach it.
I think I will stop now as I am rambling.
I say stuff firmly and use excelsior. It is easier to pull the needle through excelsior, than polyfill. Mum stuffs her head very tightly. She says that I don't put enough excelsior in my heads. There are times when I think that I have enough in the head, but I'll have her check and she can manage to stuff another 1/2 bag into the head. There is firm and then there is firm. Just try different things until you find something that works for you.
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.
Well most of these bears are better looking than some of my first bears. But back in the day there weren't so many teddy bear resources available. I am not so sure that I even have the first bear that I designed. I do have the first bear that I made with tons of help from mum.
Maybe in the next few weeks I'll get some time to dig around and find him.