Wednesday, 7 May 2008

Balancing act

It was a glorious Bank Holiday weekend here in the UK, three whole days of warm holiday sunshine, time to relax outdoors and even time for a family get together on Saturday evening, when we strolled down to the pub by the river to meet my sister, her family and bouncy 'Bugsy', their lively two year old German Shepherd, in the pub grounds.

Teddy Bear Scene magazine, 'Teddy Bear Artist Event' article

So yesterday, it would be fair to say I went back to work feeling refreshed, but as soon as the 'Teddy Bear Scene' magazine dropped through my letterbox, I couldn't avoid my scheduling issue any longer, the 'Teddy Bear Artist Event' to be held at Stratford Upon Avon on 8th June, is well and truly just around the corner and my work/life balancing act seems to have gone a wee bit awry of late! The show seemed ages away, so I'm no way near prepared for it yet. I read the magazine article and each enthusiastic word about the show reminded me of exactly how much work I have yet to do; everyone sounds so organised already! One eager exhibitor has even managed to complete four gorgeous bears in readinness for the 'Four Seasons Exhibitor's Challenge' which will be held on the day and there's me, still wondering how on earth I'm even going to produce sufficient bears from my bearmaker's hat to fill my table, let alone manage a season too ... and there are only four and a half weeks until show day - gulp! Still, it was nice to see my 'Peregrine' bear featured in the article, even if it was simply to let everyone know this naughty bearmaker hasn't yet managed to produce her TBAE show bears!

Karen's beautiful vintage crochet collar - pre-tea dye!

On a more productive note, I must tell you the red, blue and white buttons arrived from the US this morning and I am delighted because they are absolutely perfect for my patriotic bear. I stitched them in place earlier today and as soon as his little flag arrives, I will be able to photograph him. This is one bear at least who will definitely meet his deadline and what a relief it was to be able to confirm that fact to Sophie, the competition organiser! All I need now is a name ... hmmmn ...

Loretta 20" - Teddy Bear Artist Event show bear, 8th June 2008

Don't get me wrong though, it's not as though I haven't started work for the show, of course I have! I finished this lady bear on Friday and she will be coming with me on the big day. She is called 'Loretta' ... such a pretty name, don't you agree? I have Karen from Cider Antiques to thank for the beautiful vintage crocheted collar, although she may not recognise it at first because I tea-dyed it to blend with Loretta's soft beige mohair. I even found a tiny vintage flower button in a suitable shade to fasten the collar. I'm very happy with this bear, she is completely representative of the type of bear I really love to create and has the sweetest face. Susan at Bear Basics recommended some dark topaz glass eyes and they have worked beautifully to give Loretta a gorgeous doe-eyed expression.

Before I return to my workroom, which of course is where I should be right now (!) I've been meaning to share a few quick recommendations for summer reading... now that I have my glasses and my ol' lady eyes can at last see again (oh the joys of being forty something!) I have taken to reading whenever I can grab the odd half hour of peace and quiet. I've read all these titles recently and thoroughly enjoyed them, so if you fancy a darn good story, guaranteed to hold your interest while you relax in your deckchair amongst the summer blooms, I'm sure one of these will do the trick and hey, we all deserve a little chillout time now and again don't we?! Go on, grab a long, cool drink and indulge yourselves, you know you want to! ;o)


  1. Hi Paula!

    Loretta's soo cute! Love that collar!
    Unfortunately I will miss the 8th June event, but hope to be able to meet you in person sooner or later!

    Hope to see the patriotic bear soon too-great buttons!

    Warmest wishes,


  2. Hi Paula!

    Loretta is a very pretty girl indeed! Good luck for the competion and June 8th!
    Ginie-Lee x

  3. She's gorgeous Paula! Thank you for letting me know you have finished the bear that is wearing "my" collar. The collar looks great tea dyed. My husband always laughs at that . . . when the collars are white we girls want ecru, and when they are dark we want white LOL. I think he is right.

    I am glad the collar took the tea colour so well and it looks stunning with the mohair you selected. Great job and beautiful bear !!! xoxo

    ~ Karen at Ciderantiques

  4. Hello! Great to hear from you all! Thank you so much for popping in for a catch up x

    Karen, I'm so pleased you like this bear and her dyed collar! It was so simple to do and took the tea staining beautifully. I think your husband is right ... we women and our foibles eh?!!


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