Tuesday, 4 December 2012

In Need of Cushion Covers

I recently redecorated my sitting room and the colour scheme is very muted.  The wallpaper is an ivory and oyster damask.  My sofas are leather and I really need some colour in there.  It seems particularly cold at this time of year.

A couple of weeks ago I discovered the joy of paper pieced patchwork and I thought that patchwork cushions might be just the thing to add an accent of colour.

In the search for a compass based design, I came across the Quilting on the Square website.  They are doing a free Block of the Month that started in February but is exactly what I was looking for.  I started the first block (February) teatime yesterday and have finished it and made it up as a cushion.

The block makes up to 12 inches, so I added a 2 inch border all around to fit a 16 inch cushion pad.  Using batik fabrics, instead of solids, I have lost some of the clear definition of the original.  The original pattern below, is called 'Which Way North '

To join in the fun before it is too late, go to:
I can't wait to get started on the March block!

Friday, 30 November 2012

Getting into the mood for Christmas

I went on a one day course at Kathy's Patch in Folkestone yesterday and learned how to make Christmas table mats.  It was great fun and I learned lots!  Patterns for 6 tablemats and a table runner were provided.  I had time to make two, but hope to complete the set before the big day!

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Busy weekend!

Many thanks to the lovely collectors who adopted Teddybuys teddies over the weekend!  White Christmas, Joy and Charm are all on their way to the US.  Little Plum has already settled into her new home in Essex.

Camellia is still looking for a new home.  More details are on the Available page.

Saturday, 17 November 2012

The Christmas Treasures Online Show has started...

There are lots of lovely bears available for adoption at www.teddiesworldwide.com

Over 70 bear artists have made teddies for this showcase of international bear artistry.

I have made several whimsical, pre-loved style teddies as well as two polar bears...and even a traditional teddy with a loud, tilt growler. 

The show closes Sunday evening.



Monday, 5 November 2012

Teddy available for Adoption

Sky is available for adoption.  Her details are on the 'Available' Tab of this blog.

Friday, 2 November 2012

Christmas Treasures Online Show Preview has Started

The Teddies Worldwide Online Show Preview has opened.  You can see the preview bears of over 80 International bear artists at www.teddiesworldwide.com and vote for your favourites until the 15th November.  There are two categories - under 5 inches and over 5 inches.  The theme for the preview piece is: a Christmas carol or song.

My preview piece is: White Christmas

He is a sweet, white teddy, who shares his Christmas stocking with a wool felt gingerbread man and tree bauble.

There are some wonderful preview pieces - well worth a visit!

Free Giveaway

Svetlana Stakheeva is giving away a gorgeous ellie on the 7th November.  To enter the draw, go to:

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Where the Heart Is

I cannot show the bears that are being prepared for the Christmas Treasures Show next month, ...but I can show you other projects I have on the go! 

Anyone who knows me, knows how much I love flowers and the garden. A few weeks ago, I became intrigued by silk ribbonwork and made a few pansies from a kit.  I wanted more, so signed up for a three week online Joggles course called Scrumptious Hearts with Christen Brown.  The course covered how to dye silk ribbon and lace and how to make a few different flowers, finishing with using them to embellish little hearts.  I thoroughly recommend the course.  I loved it.  I didn't follow the instructions entirely, but I have always marched to my own drum.  My hearts have ended up as pincushions, as I added 4 layers of batting to make them thick enough.  (Not much room left for pins, though!)

I feel that I am just at the start of this journey, and look forward to more of this work, when bear making, housework and gardening commitments allow!

Friday, 19 October 2012

Only Two Months Until Christmas!

Sorry that I haven't posted lately.  I am very busy designing and making bears for the Christmas Treasures Onlinw Show in November.  The bears have to be kept under wraps until the show begins...

So I thought I'd show a few photos of other projects in progress...

This year I have discovered colour - or I probably should say, have rediscovered colour.  Back in the 1980s I knitted lots of Kaffe Fassett jumpers in lots of beautiful colours, but I then became very conservative with colour, tending to natural muted shades.

I have recently started hand-dyeing - trying my hand at dyeing mohair, cotton and silk using a variety of techniques.  If you haven't tried it, it is SO much fun and very addictive.  With just a few colours of dye, you can create a huge range of colours.

Below is a photo of my latest mohair dyeing attempts.

I have been hand dyeing silk and satin ribbons and lace for future projects (when I get time!).

It doesn't show up well in the photos, but many of the ribbons have been dyed to make them ombre ribbons.  I love to see graduated colour on ribbons and is so easy to do.

I fell in love with the yarn below and liked it so much, I knitted it up as scarves in three different colourways.

I also found time to make a tote and poochie bag.  The tote design is from Lisa Lam's book.  The poochie bag was from a free online pattern by Monica Solorio-Snow.

Wishing you all a lovely day!

Sunday, 30 September 2012

And the winner is....

Congratulations to Mecki for winning Maisie.!  Please email me with your address, Mecki, and I will post her to you.  I hope she will bring you much joy.

Many thanks to everyone who entered the draw!

Friday, 14 September 2012

Turning Girly

I can't remember my Mum ever buying me a pretty dress.  In fact, my childhood memories consist mainly of falling out of trees a lot, horse riding and fighting with my brother.  My Mum tried sending me to ballet classes, in hope that I would acquire some poise, but no...I'm still clumsy!

Don't get me wrong.  I've always loved colour.  Back in the 1980's I knitted three or four of Kaffe Fassett's lovely colourful jackets and jumpers.  

I should have seen the signs.  Suddenly my bears started appearing in girly colours.  I have developed a penchant for ribbons.  Now I've retired from teaching in boys schools, I've started wearing skirts again.  Where all this will end, I have no idea.  I just hope I don'ty end up like Dicken's Miss Haversham - batty and head to toe in old lace!

I digress - back to ribbons!  I love antique ribbonwork and French ombre ribbons.  Until now, I haven't had time to explore this engaging aspect of embroidery.  Now Hugglets has passed and I have two months before my next bear show, I thought I would 'have a go' at creating a ribbonwork  pansy.  The ribbons were so lovely, and I enjoyed looking at them so much, it took a lot of willpower to cut them.  Imagine Gollam looking at 'my precious' and you won't go far wrong.

To cut a long story short, the result is pictured above.  How I love those jewel-like colours!   I purchased a small kit from Helen Gibb's website to get me started.  I could not believe how easy they are to make.  If you can thread a needle and do a running stitch, you can make these.  I used a French Knot in the middle of each flower - wow, that took me back 30 years!  Now I think I have the bug and will have to try some different flowers.  I particularly like the fact that the flowers are sewn without the use of glue.

I am waiting for a book about Ribbonwork to arrive from Amazon. There will be no stopping me once that arrives!

There is still plenty of time to sign up for the teddy giveaway in the last post!

Hugs to all

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Teddy Giveaway

To belatedly celebrate two years of Teddybuys blogging and over 21,000 pageviews I am giving away little Maisie.  She is the prototype of my new style of bear.  All you need to do is leave a comment below and you will be entered into the draw which will take place on Sunday, 30th September.  For two chances to win her, link to my blog using the image below.  If you link to my blog, please mention this in your post!  I will post worldwide free of charge.  Good luck!!!

  1. Iako
  2. Iako
  3. Birgitte
  4. Peter
  5. Ulf
  6. Sandra
  7. Katy
  8. Elena M
  9. Elena M
  10. Dina
  11. Pauline
  12. Linda B
  13. Conni 
  14. Conni 
  15. Laura
  16. Tatiana
  17. Tatiana
  18. Gemma 
  19. Cheryl
  20. Cheryl
  21. Lulu 
  22. Larissa
  23. Larissa 
  24. Nataliya
  25. Nataliya 
  26. Joanne
  27. Joanne 
  28. Linda H
  29. Linda H
  30. Galina
  31. Galina
  32. Debora
  33. Natalia
  34. Natalia 
  35. Mecki
  36. Mecki
  37.  Alya
  38. Alya
  39. Elena R
  40. Elena R
  41. Elena (Minsk)
  42. Elena (Minsk) 
  43. Wendi 
  44. Юлюша
  45. Юлюша
  46.   Manda
  47. Елена (Helen)
  48. Dana
  49. Dana 
  50. Laura S 
  51. Nikitina Natalia
  52. Nikitina Natalia
  53. Marina
  54. Marina
  55. Gerda
  56. Gerda
  57. Helen
  58. Helen 
  59. Natalya (Tasej)
  60. Natalya (Tasej)
  61. Brenda
  62. Ira
  63. Ira
  64. Anna
  65. Anna 
  66. Ded
  67. Debbie
  68. Tori
  69. Alice
  70. Alice
  71. Алла
  72.  Аллa 
  73. Tammy 
  74. Natasha
  75. Eva
  76. Eva 
  77. Elena
  78. (Rusalena)
  79. Elena Pevzeva
  80. Elena Pevzeva
  81. Galina
  82. Galina
  83. Natasha (xrundel)
  84. Natasha (xrundel)
  85. Иринка Rodionova
  86. Иринка Rodionova 
  87. Laura
  88. Laura
  89. Deimantė 
  90. Deimantė
  91. Ingrida 
  92. Valentina
  93. Valentina 
  94. Michael

Monday, 10 September 2012

The day after...

Wow, am I tired today!  I had a great day at Hugglets yesterday. 

Thankyou to all the lovely collectors that took my bears home with them.  Please excuse the quality of the photo of my table, but all our photos were out of focus! 

It was a very warm day with lots of other events happening in London, but the halls were crowded. 

I finally got to meet the lovely Peter Masscharis.  He was one of the first collectors who adopted my bears when I first started out.  He is even nicer in person.  It felt like meeting an old friend.  Just brilliant!

Saturday, 8 September 2012

Hugglets Preview

I have taken a few snaps of some of the bears that will be coming to Hugglets with me tomorrow.  Please come and say hello if you get the chance.  I will be in Hall 2 on the second floor.

I will have my new range of vintage nursery toys with me as well as a very few realistic style bears.

Vintage-style nursery bears

These have been designed and created to look as though they have been loved for a long time.  They have been made from quality German mohair with matt or shiny black glass English eyes.  They have been weighted and understuffed so they 'slump' nicely.  They are loosely cotter pin jointed - again, for that slumpy look.  They have been extensively aged using a variety of techniques to make them appear vintage without affecting the strength or longevity of the fabric. Their noses and mouths have been sparsely stitched and aged.  Most are finished with aged taffeta ribbon or lace.







Blue Ellie

Old Ellie

Realistic Bears

Unfortunately, I don't have many realistic bears on offer this time. 




Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Hugglets Prep 3

This week has been incredibly busy.  I have been continuing to make bears for Hugglets this weekend.  My favourites is Mae.  (Should I have favourites or should I love them all the same?  Now there's a hole with no bottom. :)

She has a cheeky face and is made using blonde, German mohair. 

I don't know where time goes.  The deadline for the Hugglets Annual is today.  I managed to get my copy done on Monday.

This year I thought I would feature my Vintage Style Nursery Toys instead of my realistic bears.  I have really enjoyed making this very different style.  In fact, I'm surprised this much fun is legal!

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Hugglets preparation 2

I have been having SO MUCH FUN making bears from the mohair I hand-dyed in the last post.  I wanted to make some bears that would display nicely alongside my trolley animals and so had to develop a new pattern.

The three little 'uns above will be coming to Hugglets with me at the end of next week.  They are called (left to right) Peaches, Peony and Kiwi.  I have used a variety of methods to age them.  They are about 8 inches tall and slouch beautifully!