Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Merry Christmas!

To my 'bloggy' friends everywhere - I hope you all have a fun-filled, family time this Christmas

and an extra picture of my Christmas lights decked Singer sewing machine!! LOL - I needed to cut back a bit this year, so didn't bother to buy a tree, but instead decorated my Singer with lights and the Christmas fairy - seems quite appropriate for a sewer really don't you think :0)

Sunday, 13 December 2015

Christmas bear

This is Casper (as in one of the Three Kings), my Christmas bear. Well, what else could he be made from such lovely red mohair fabric? He’s made from the same pattern as my last bear below (Sammy): a pattern I can’t even give credit for, as it was a free pattern found on Pinterest – thanks anyway to whoever is the designer!!

Casper looks as though he’s going carol singing doesn’t? He’s carrying his rusty primitive style lantern trimmed with greenery and pip berries; and has his Christmas carol singing sheet at the ready – I’ve tried to photograph the inside of the carol sheet to show the detail, but it's rather blurred - sorry!! I made it from vintage carol sheet images I found: I shrunk them down, printed them, glued them together and added an antique style eyelet

He has glass eyes; slightly smaller than Sammy’s, firm fibre filling and steel shot in his tummy and feet, faux repair stitching and distressing here and there to give an aged appearance.
For his nose, I’ve tried the felting technique just to see how that works – it’s ok I guess! And finally, Casper is trimmed with white chiffon ribbon, a holly sprig and two random buttons for a bit more colour.

I do hope you like Casper

Saturday, 12 December 2015

It's beginning to feel a lot like

Christmas" ...........       cue for a song??!!

As my next bear isn't quite ready, I thought I'd show you a couple of photographs of the Fig & Pear Chutney I made this morning. I've made it a couple of times before and I have to say, it's blooming lovely!! After I made it last year, the empty jars were returned by a couple of people saying "more please", so there you go. It's relatively easy to make; it just takes a while peeling, and chopping all the pears .............. it's worth while though. Very nice with cheese!!

Next bear tomorrow hopefully ................ or maybe Monday!! LOL

Wednesday, 2 December 2015


Rather later than planned, I can now introduce Sammy to you! He is made from a lovely lilac colour mohair fabric, with matching amethyst transparent glass eyes and cotton velvet (hand-dyed by me) for his paw pads. He is filled with firm fibre filling and steel shot in his tummy and feet – with a bit of distressing around the edges, including some faux mending stitches to age him slightly. Sammy has a purple woolly heart stitched on his tum and is 10 inches from top to toe (or paw!!)

A lovely thick woolly scarf, with bells on, is helping to keep him warm in this rather chilly weather .......

but look at who he has met on his walk ……. a lovely robin red breast and a very friendly one too by the looks of it! although maybe Mr Robin is hoping Sammy has some birdie treats in that satchel of his!

The robin is needle-felted by me AND I only stabbed myself about 25 times during the process of making him …….. ouch!! The smaller the needle-felting, the more likely you are to pierce your skin and Mr Robin is quite small as you can imagine. 

Sammy’s little satchel is also handmade by me from ultra suede – and it opens!! and I can tell you that machine stitching such small pieces is really tricky. I decided on machine sewing, because I didn’t think I’d manage hand sewing through a double thickness of suede – my fingers were already sore from the needle-felting!! LOL

So, there’s my latest creation and as always, I would love to know what you think!

Sunday, 8 November 2015


So, enough of baby cot quilts, and back to my bears!

As much as I love the natural look of a bare bear, I’ve been itching to dress one; even just a little bit, so may I introduce Edgar in his trousers? So named by my sister-in-law, Ruth because I couldn’t decide on a name. I’ve been really rubbish at choosing names for my bears so far. Ruth has just been to visit and she decided he looks like an ‘Edgar’, so that’s his name. Made from Viscose (I think it is anyway – some of the fabric Shazy gave me), and suede for the paw pads, fully jointed, with glass eyes, firm fibre filling and some steel shot in his little fat tummly and paws. He’s been aged around the edges to give a vintage look, including faux ‘mending’ stitches; and dressed in woolly red trousers, with some homespun fabric for a little hankie in his pocket and his scarf trimmed with a couple of rusty bells to add to the vintage look.

Edgar is from a bear pattern called ‘Bears N Hares’ by Sweet MeadowFarm.

I hope you like him!

Saturday, 31 October 2015

Baby Cot Quilt

I’ve had a short break from my bears the last few weeks or so because I was asked by a work colleague to make a baby cot quilt. Something traditional was the request; but, still unsure what to do, I asked her to find a design she liked – and hexagons were her choice! These are approximately 4½ inches in width and machine stitched, rather than the smaller ‘paper piecing’ ones, which would have taken 'forever', or at least until the youngster was about 5-years old!!  I hadn’t a clue how to go about machine sewing hexagons, other that knowing accurate points would be crucial!! However, I found an excellent tutorial on YouTube, which worked really well. Even though I say so myself, practically all of the points are spot on! I added a border in a neutral ivory tone and a smaller lemon one to help the hexagons pop. Anyway, this is it

Thankfully, baby cot quilts are small LOL. Mind you, I ended up making two, because when I was half way through making this one, my sister-in-law saw it and asked whether I would make one for her to give as a gift to one of her work friends who was also expecting. Unfortunately, I forgot to take a photograph of that one, as there was a bit of a rush to finish it – the said lady having had a C section a week ago and my sister-in-law was due to visit her on Thursday, so I had to get it finished quickly! It’s a shame, because it’s a different design to this one, other than I used a few of the left-over hexagons in the centre; and then I did appliqué birds and flowers around the edges – very sweet!

Anyway, I’m back to my bears now
and hope I shall soon have another one to show!

I nearly forgot; Happy Spooky Halloween everyone!!!!!!

Friday, 18 September 2015

Tilly the Hefalump!! :0)

I've been itching to make a mohair 'bear' elephant and here she is - Tilly

Can you call an elephant Tilly!!?? Anyway, that's her name. She's made from a dusty blue mohair, with cotton fabric for her inner ears and is fully jointed, with steel shot in her little fat tummy to weight her. She's also carrying a basket of roses on her trunk

I love her to bits, although I hope to improve on the design next time.

Any well-dressed hefalump must of course have a ribbon on her tail, and I didn't forget LOL - see?

And look at these - get the false eyelashes - they were tricky I can tell you!

I'm certainly learning as I go along. I think I need to plan ahead better and be a bit more patient instead of being so eager to get another bear finished. That's what happens when full-time working gets in the flippin' way all the time. I've made two bears in the last 2 weeks only because I've been on leave from work; and to be honest I had hoped to make more, but I have been out and about a bit too, including my first ever 'Bear Fair' at Kensington Town Hall in London ........ gosh, so many gorgeous bears, so much inspiration!!

Saturday, 12 September 2015


I finished my latest creation this morning; her name is Penny (see the little penny charm sewn on her chest)!! The problem is I can't decide whether I like the little (tu tu) skirt or not - will you help me choose?

Without skirt

AND, with skirt

Some bear makers dress their bears in complete outfits, but I have to say, the more I make them, the less adornment I think they need - the beauty seems to be in the lovely fabrics; and to a large degree, in the facial expressions. I think Penny is probably my cutest one yet; and just 6 inches from top to toe!

Anyway, let me know what you think please!!

Sunday, 23 August 2015

The Three Bears!

I thought you might like to see my latest mohair bears! I’ve been busy beevering away, continuing to ‘learn the ropes’ of making mohair bears; and making mistakes along the way! But that’s what it’s about at this stage. There’s a particular order to making the bears; and a few times I’ve realised too late I'd forgotten to do something! They are all made of genuine mohair fabric, fully jointed with steel shot inside their tummys, paws and legs; and with genuine glass eyes. They're all somewhere between 7 - 9 inches tall from top to toe!

Anyway, introducing Luca (I haven’t been very inspired by names, but was watching ‘Tea with Mussolini’ last night and liked the name Luca!)

Luca is from a pattern by Sylvie Touzard, bought from Noble Fabrics. I’m very pleased with him, because he has a really nice face. Luca’s woolly jumper is my own pattern, which involved quite a bit of guess work, but now I have the pattern for future use; and I love the burnt orange colour.

Next we have Finn, a little sailor boy teddy

Do you like his little top and matching hat? They were made from an old vintage tea towel I had picked up ages ago at one of those vintage/craft fairs; and to that I added a small antique style brass anchor charm. Finn is from the same pattern as Luca above, but made from a different colour mohair fabric: I’ve also given him a smiley mouth instead ……………. another cutey eh!! It’s amazing how the same pattern in a different fabric, with a different slant to a mouth or nose, can completely change the look of a bear.

And now thirdly (and my absolute favourite so far) is Lala. I just love the quirkyness of this bear. It’s a straight copy from a free pattern I found on ‘Pinterest’ (a great place for free patterns and inspiration generally).

Now I hope you will be just a little bit impressed, because the pattern is in Russian! It’s by a very talented lady called Irina Kunakh – she makes some really unusual bears. I just love her little fat tummy (Lala’s not Irina’s!!) I loved the bear so much the way Irina made it that I didn’t want to adapt it at all; I wanted the same thing and was fortunate enough to find the exact (I think anyway) mohair fabric at what has become my favourite bear making supplies shop. I luckily already had some lilac polka dot fabric for her necktie, ears and feet pads – Lala’s eyes are purple transparent glass. I’d like to be able to say I followed the pattern because I’m so proficient in Russian!!!, but of course I’m not, I don’t speak a word of it, so there’s no need to be too impressed LOL!! Thankfully bear patterns go together in much the same way, so it wasn’t so difficult. It was just things like the cotter joint sizes and eye sizes I couldn’t understand, but they were easy enough to work out. One of the above mentioned mistakes with Lala is that I should have used a thicker Perle cotton for her mouth and eyebrows – they are there, but they’re not too easy to see because I used a No. 12 thread, whereas I should have used a number 8 ……. next time though!!

This last photo here is Irina’s bear (called Lilo) so that you can see I’ve managed to be fairly true to the original.

I chose the name Lala for my version after one of my aunt’s who was nicknamed Lala (real name Sarah), but apparently she was always singing …… “la, la, la, la” all the time. She died young, so I sadly never knew her; and Lala is similar to Irina’s Lilo. You can see Irina’s blog here if you wish, but do you speak Russian??!!!

EDIT 19.10.15
What a lovely surprise - Lala has been adopted and will soon be on her way to her new home in South Wales!!

As I gradually improve in the making of these lovely, special bears, my own style will definitely lean very much towards the quirky style most of the time, although eventually I want to be able to make and offer a variety of styles and sizes for sale.

I hope you love looking at my bears as much as I am enjoying making them

Thanks for visiting.