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teddyretirementhome Woo Bears
Posts: 92


I have a question about options for shading bears.

Firstly, board keepers, I  know there is a section in the dropdown menu for airbrushing/shading etc., but it does not give me the option of posting directly to there.  Is it possible?  It would help keep the boards tidy.... so I'm only able to post here - under the Index - Tips & Techniques root menu.

Okay, here's my query:  (well, a couple)

Has anyone used the dilutable H. Dupont or Pebeo liquid fabric dyes with a paintbrush successfully for shading faces, etc.?  Were you able to achieve the shade, control the color well enough, and was it easy to work with/didn't set too fast? Could you blend it easily?

Has anyone tried Yasutomo Fabric dye markers? … &Itemid=69

I've used prisma color pencils and Copic, and am not fully satisfied with the results... particularly how the alcohol in the markers and the blender frizz my mohair!. I know that markers bind the color to the fabric with a sort of glue in the color marker formula, which would account for the "crunchy" feel after using Copic markers,  and that with some oil based color shading methods you should wait 3 days for the color to set before you can move on (brush residue out?).... BUT is there a non airbrush product that one can apply subtle shading to a bear's face that enters the mohair fibers, and does not just sit on top?

I'm an artist/designer with a BFA and know how to work with oil, acrylic, ink, even photosensitive stuff (creating an exposure on porcelain or paper) etc. on traditional surfaces and materials, but don't want to spoil precious mohair or invest in more trial-and-error shading experiments that I may only use once!

Thank you for your help!


Brenda the newbie  teddy bear making nerd
woo bears!

SueAnn Past Time Bears
Flower Mound, Texas
Posts: 20,573

SueAnn Help Advisor, Banner Sponsor

Brenda, your post is now showing in the library under "Airbrushing/Painting/Shading".

dangerbears Dangerbears
Posts: 6,019

Brenda, I haven't used the products you mention, but as long as we're going on a "shady" thread, I'll share something that I tried recently.

I've read several posts recommending the Prisma colored pencils, and I bought a box of the "woodless" variety - just sticks similar to pastels. They do work if you just rub them on the fur, but I wasn't happy with the control I got that way. So I tried wetting a stiff (but smallish) paint brush and rubbing that on the pencil-stick. I blotted the brush on paper to remove excess paint and water, and then took it to the mohair. I loved it! I got the subtle effect I wanted after three or four repetitions, an no long drying time.

So - not what you were asking about, but I thought I'd share.  bear_original


danceswithteddybears Dances With Teddy Bears
Pacific Northwest
Posts: 697

Becky, that's a great idea!  I'm going to try it.
Thanks for sharing your discovery!

teeeej Brisbane
Posts: 623

I have noticed with the copics that they can make the hair feel very gritty. Apply in layers. Let it dry a bit and give it a brush in between each layer you do. Start with lighter shades and work you way up to darker ones. I used to apply wayyyy to much copic marker in one go, ending up with that crunchy feel. I also noticed that the copics tend to clump the mohair up, and brushing helps break up those clumps.

Scraps of mohair are awesome for testing markers on!!!


dinimm Melbourne
Posts: 44

I've never known about brushing between "coats" so I'll have to give that a try on a scrap.


teeeej Brisbane
Posts: 623

I like to brush between coats as it gets rid of those little bangs the mohair tends to get with the copic markers. I find if I try to do two many layers at once it gets quite wet, so letting it dry a little and brushing it helps.

K Pawz Guest

I love using Dye Na Flow silk paints for shading! they work great in an airbrush or with a paintbrush painted on.


Ginger Sleeping Bear
Coatesville PA
Posts: 8

Aaah, I just found this post & while I'm not doing shading, or using an airgun, I do need some suggestions from expert mohair painters!

I am a bear creator but am making a grey & white kitty for our vet for Xmas. It hopefully will look like my cat Spencer when I'm done & the pattern I'll be using is not large. I've managed to do the 'socks' & the white tummy but the face is going to be a bear...ooops! 'Scuse the pun...this is a cat...Spencer! Spencer has a white snout but he had a very distinct, narrow white strike up between his eyes that if I don't do it, it misses looking like him altogether. I've tried cutting test fabric using the pattern piece but by the time I get the seams done it's very clumpy. And that's just using cotton! It would not only be hard to sew with mohair but also very clumpy!

So my solution, I was thinking of using a bit of fabric paint & painting the stripe, but it will need to have good coverage over the grey mohair?
If anyone has any tips on a good fabric paint that would give me what I need...or any other ideas on how I could get the strike up his face, I'd be very happy right now!

Thanks for reading...

Kirstie_DDB Posts: 85

I don't know how big the stripe is on your cat (such a great gift idea) but one thing I did to make white areas around the eyes was to needle-felt them in but then keep some of the wool long on top, and just roughly trim it to the same length as the grey fur surrounding it. Here

Not sure how well that would work on larger areas though.

jenny Three O'clock Bears
warwickshire uk
Posts: 4,413

I tried using landscape dyes with a paint brush after a lady on a course I was running said she tried it and it worked and I have to say it does work...really well.
I also use acrylic paints but I use a wetting agent...I add a bit of shampoo ...a tiny amount to the water I use along with the can buy a fabric medium but the shampoo ..or even washing up liquid works just as well.
If you are using the paints on needle felting olive soap works better on the wool...along with the paint.

jenny Three O'clock Bears
warwickshire uk
Posts: 4,413

I just read your post again....and I'd needle felt it. While paint won't work...all the fabric paints are translucent ...
Or make the head in white and paint the grey bits on...

Francesca KALEideaSCOPE
Posts: 1,306

I would also suggest you needle felt it. You could successively root in white mohair. This is what I did to do the white stripe on my latest skunk:

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