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Shelli Makes - Teddy bears & other cheerful things by Shelli Quinn
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gingerbear vermont
Posts: 74

Hello everyone!
I'm new to sewing minis, a few years ago I made a few that didn't turn out well. But I'm really determined to give this another try! I'm making these strictly for fun and just for myself, but I want very much to make really good quality bears. After doing some reading here, I can see some of the mistakes I was making, so I'm actually excited that maybe there's hope if I don't give up! I do have a few newbie questions and would be so appreciative of some help.

~ I'm currently making a very sparse mohair 4" bear from a kit. I've used Sassy's Magic fabric fixer all over the back of the material in a thin coat and blotted excess. Here's hoping that was the correct thing to do! Now, do I trim the hair from the seam allowance (in this case it's 3mm)?

~Would someone please try to explain to me how to know when the tension in my st is correct? What do I look for? Do you pull very tight?

Thanks so much! I'm sure I'll have more questions.... This forum is so amazingly helpful and I would have quit completely if it wasn't here! I've really learned a great deal already.


student bearmaker Northern Ireland
Posts: 283

Hi Gingerbear, just noticed your query is unanswered so I'll tell you what I think, although I have only made one mini because my hands are a bit arthritic now and I find turning the tiny limbs very fiddley. This is my results for a Monica Spicer pattern which is 9.5 cms.
If you haven't done so already, there is a wealth of tips and info which you could access in the Library here.
I took an online course with Megan Wallace at Tinsoldiers which was very useful, here's a link to her free tutorial on miniature bears … ect52.html
Megan is very generous & helpful and I'm sure she'll be happy to answer any mini bear making query you want to email her.
I usually prevent fraying with a diluted PVA glue on the edges only however if your fabric is still flexible with the Sassy's product it should be fine.I don't think you need to trim seam allowances if the fabric is very sparce mohair as it should make good contact with fabric backing between pattern pieces and any occasional fibres caught in the seams could be brushed out after sewing.
I have learnt that stitching,particularly in minis needs to be small and accurate so I always mark the sewing line with a metallic gel pen to help achieve good curves and I sew twice with double thread to give strength to the seams.  I pull the thread tight and feel the stitch tension between my fingers so that the stitches are flat and not puckering the fabric.
I hope this limited knowledge is of some help to you however other and more experienced mini bear makers may contradict my response and could give you more informed advice.
Good luck and don't forget to post a photo of your little creation when complete, we all enjoy seeing everyone's efforts.

My one and only mini- sorry,don't know why photo is presented sideways?

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