Wednesday, 4 February 2009

A preview and a competitive ponder ...

I'm in the middle of my show work for Hugglets' Winter Bearfest' show in London at the end of the month and can at last share a few photos of my completed bears with you. There will be more to come over the next couple of weeks, but in the meantime, I updated my website this morning with these special show bears ... you may recognise them from some of the 'works in progress' photographs in my earlier posts!

20" Chilli

20" Cocoa

20" Honey

20" Misty - the extra ball of wool arrived yesterday, allowing me to finish her jacket last night!

I'm still muddling along with my manual camera settings, so I am not quite as content with these photographs as I would like to have been, but luckily for me Tina has offered a few more photographic pointers which should help improve my snaps and she has also promised to visit me and my bears the week before the show to take some professional photographs!

'Primrose and her Duckling'

My 2009 TOBY entry

Before I return to my sewing, I have a little disappointing news today: the TOBY 2009 Industry's Choice Award nominations have now been announced and sadly my entry wasn't on that hallowed list. One of the criteria for entries is "entries must must differ from previously issued designs, with substantial changes in size, materials, and/or costume" - a difficult challenge for any bear artist and one I tried my best to adhere to with 'Primrose and her Duckling' who couldn't possibly be construed as being anything like 'Billy Buttons' (my successful 2008 entry) in style.

23" Billy Buttons, my 2008 TOBY Award winner

It's always tough to know how best to approach competition work and as those of you 'Bearing All' regulars will know, I have agonised over this issue in the past. To sum up my feelings this year, naturally I'm a little disappointed at being overlooked for the 2009 TOBY Award because I am confident Primrose is a lovely, happy and above all, original design - definitely worthy of entering into this significant competition. So no, I'm not downcast today and I will of course take this year's result on the chin; in fact, I'll even go as far as offering my congratulations to the winners! I haven't seen those in my category yet, but I did have the pleasure of viewing several other worthy entries this morning, confirming that ours is a truly competitive and inspiring field! No, on reflection, I think I can safely say there's very little doubt I'll dust myself down in time to rise to the TOBY challenge again next year!


  1. Oww , I wish I had an award to give Primrose Paula ! When I saw her at Stratford I thought she was the Huggiest Happiest bear ever !

    Golden Teddies next eh ? ;0)


  2. They are all so beautiful!!!!! But Toby........... he is a real charmer!!!


  3. Paula I am shocked that Primrose was not chosen for a Toby Nominee!! Good for you for moving forward and not letting that stop you from entering next year.

    Good luck at Hugglets this month! I am just head over heels for Misty :)


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