Friday 30 June 2017

The great spin cycle of life

Friday, so soon? I'm not quite sure where my week disappeared to ... I had hoped to share a lovely new white teddy bear today, but he's not quite ready to make an appearance after a week filled with hiccups, not least of which was my mobile 'phone giving up the ghost. How did we ever manage without those annoying little gadgets I wonder? I swear my 'phone ownership was jinxed this year when, after buying a brand new shiny one a couple of months ago, I accidentally loaded it into the washing machine with some towels. Sadly it didn't live to tell the tale after the  800 rpm spin cycle! I went back to using my trusty old mobile but now that too has decided enough is enough, so now I have had to order another new 'phone and I am still waiting to be connected. Yawn! What a palaver modern life can be! I'm sure it was much simpler in days of yore before everyone's ears were glued to these wretched communication devices but as you will no doubt agree, if we can't live with 'em, we sure as hell can't live without 'em nowadays!

Anyway, in 'other news', young Rodney is now a cheeky four months old and has settled beautifully into family life. In fact he is a wonderfully sweet natured fellow, full of fun and very cuddlesome. He wakes me every morning by hopping up onto my bed and snuggling ... it's not a bad way to start a day let me tell you!

So, given that it is Friday afternoon and I have no teddy bear pics to share today (tut!) here are a couple of very recent Rodney snaps instead. I hope they make you smile and help ease away the strains of the past week.

Wishing you all a very happy, relaxed and stress free weekend!


Wednesday 28 June 2017

The things of no moment

What a beautiful month June has been!

This is a photograph of one of my favourite places to take Polly and Betty for a good run. It's a huge field, covered with wonderful grasses and meadow flowers throughout the summer months.

My girls are so happy when they visit the field and watching them bound through the long grass is an absolute joy.

Sadly though, this is yet another local field under threat of development. It really is heartbreaking to think that such a beautiful area will probably become yet another housing development, as so many others recently have.

It makes me very sad to see our local green spaces destroyed forever in the name of progress. I wonder how losing so much of our natural environment can possibly be progress?


 Some wise words for our town planners to mull over ...

How does the Meadow flower
its bloom unfold? Because the
lovely little flower is free
down to its root, and in that
freedom bold.

                                                                                  by William Wordsworth


The great events of life often leave one
unmoved; they pass out of consciousness, and,
when thinks of them, become unreal. Even the
scarlet flowers of passion seem to grow in the
same meadow as the poppies of oblivion. We
reject the burden of their memory, and have 
anodynes against them. But the little things,
the things of no moment, remain with us. In
some tiny ivory cell the brain stores the most 
delicate, and the most fleeting impressions.

                                                                   by Oscar Wilde

Friday 23 June 2017

Lavender's Blue

The lavender is spectacular at the moment and happily, I just happened to have the perfect shade of mohair for a lavender inspired teddy girl.

Dilly has been adopted

I am delighted to tell you, Dilly will be winging her way to live in the good ol' USA next week.

Lavender's Blue

Lavender's blue, dilly, dilly
Lavender's green
When l am King, dilly, dilly
You shall be Queen!

Call up your men, dilly, dilly
Set them to work
Some to the plough, dilly, dilly
And some to the pond.

Some to make hay, dilly, dilly
Some to cut corn
While you and I, dilly, dilly
Keep ourselves warm.

I have happy memories of singing the nursery rhyme 'Lavender's blue, dilly, dilly' as a young child at school but had no idea until researching this morning, that the earliest version originated as far back as the 17th Century and was then considered quite a saucy song! 
We live and learn eh?!


Thursday 22 June 2017

Blowing through the cobwebs in my mind

Goodness it's been hot! Way too hot 'n humid to work comfortably with mohair that's for sure! Rather than struggle on, I've been busy updating the Guild of Master Bearcrafters website, playing in the paddling pool with my grandson, reading arty type books, sketching and painting, eating ice-lollies and generally staying as cool as possible at home.

It has been fun to give myself a little time to mentally meander while it has been hot, but now the heatwave has broken with a lovely cooling thunderstorm this morning (horaay!) I find myself looking forward to making my way back into my workroom later today, to try to finish a pretty teddy bear I began work on before I began to overheat.

My poor dogs and cats struggled with the heat too, so we've been making the most of the beautiful evenings, by walking and playing in the garden just before the sun sets. It has been refreshing to be out and about at that time of the evening.

Rodney, now the grand old age of seventeen weeks, has had a great time exploring outdoors in the evening and learning how to climb Dad's plum tree.

And Polly and Betty have loved evening walkies through the orchard and across the field.

As for my elusive Puddlecat, she has been prowling through shady patches in the garden like a small black panther. She's always so hard to spot with a camera lens, but I did just about catch a black shadow lurking behind the lavendar bush yesterday evening.

I am dreaming of coastal holidays of course, but as much as I love a sea breeze on a hot Summer's day, unfortunately a holiday will have to wait until Rodney is a wee bit older. Until then, I plan to be outdoors as much as possible and who knows, I may even find time to write a few more blog posts! After all, everyone needs a Summer break to recharge their batteries ... even we teddy bear makers!

Happy Summer Everyone!


Monday 19 June 2017

My Father's Day Wish

Dear Dad,  
I know you won't mind one bit, if in your absence, I pass my Father's Day wish to your Grandson this year ...

Happy Father's Day Anthony! 

I watched as you and Toby laughed together yesterday, I watched too, as your son was so excited to share his discovery of snails in the shed, with you, his Daddy. I watched when you ran to scoop him into your arms as he fell on our walk to the ice-cream shop and when you carried him and his bicycle, in this flaming June heat, until he was happy to try independence again. Later I watched as you helped him at the dinner table and as you took him for a quiet chat when he needed a little help to remember his manners. I saw you keep your cool when his inner naughty two year old bubbled up and I saw how my grandson listens to you with the love and respect a toddler only ever grants someone he truly trusts. I watched the two of you together and couldn't help but think what a great daddy you have become. 
Toby is one lucky little munchkin to have you (and his very special mummy) guiding him and loving him. 
Happy Father's Day Son.
You make me so very proud.

Friday 9 June 2017

Political pathways

Yesterday was General Election Day here in the UK and to be honest, I hadn't a clear view of which party I felt could safely lead the country towards a future I would like for my children and grandson. This election, nothing seemed quite clearly enough defined for my simple head and despite trying to unravel pledges from the main parties, it seemed to me what I needed was a 'pick 'n mix' option in order to select my ideal world! Sadly that wasn't available so I did what I could to read and research, asked my friends to share their thoughts and then strolled down to the polling station, still muddle headed, with my husband after dinner.

Polly and Betty accompanied us and enjoyed saying hello to the polling station officials as we collected our voting slips. They sat patiently and politely in the booth, while I pondered, pencil in hand, before finally committing my vote.  It may not have been a completely confident 'X' in the box this year, but it was a cross made with hope for our future, love of my family and gratitude to those women who fought a determined battle a hundred years ago, to give women their political voice.

'Emmeline' has been adopted

As my poor head pondered the political pathways yesterday afternoon, I finished this teddy girl and given the importance of her birthday, named her Emmeline ... it seemed appropriate!


Thursday 8 June 2017

A cheeky offer

It's time for some summer sale fun!

11" Tabasco

11" 'Tabasco' is currently available on Ebay. He is a super little mohair bear in a very smart colour combination of tomato red and black, definitely a bear to stand out in a teddy bear crowd!

This sweet wee bear has a 'buy it now' option with a lovely £40 discount and free shipping available ... or, if you fancy your luck, you could even take a chance and make me a cheeky adoption offer; you never know your luck!

Better be quick though, as Tabasco's Ebay page will close in 2 days' time!

Bon chance!


Update: Tabasco has been adopted!

Thursday 1 June 2017

Ten years on

On the 26th March 2007, I wrote my first blog post ...

Are you sitting comfortably?

"Then I'll begin ... although, to be honest, I'm not quite sure where to start! So, how would you feel if I just let my fingers do the walking and we'll see where they take us?

Do you like the teddy bear? That's a relief! She's my latest creation. Yes, I'm a teddy bear designer, does that surprise you? If you recognised the quote by AA Milne, probably not. My guess is there may be an elderly bear sitting quietly on your pillow, or a little more discreetly at the foot of your bed. You've had him for years and years, he's a wee bit threadbare these days, maybe missing an ear, or an eye, but there's something about him, something very special ..."

Back then I had no idea I would still be writing here ten years later. In fact I didn't begin my blog with a plan at all - I had a loose idea I wanted to share my bears through my writing, but beyond that, I simply followed my heart and allowed my fingers to do the talking.  

Besides making teddy bears, so much has happened during my ten years here as a 'blogger' and my quiet corner of the World Wide Web has generously provided unending blank 'pages' for me to share my thoughts. This blog has witnessed happiness and heartbreak, success and occasionally failure. It has flowed along my life's tributaries, gently carrying me through some of the most challenging times in my life and I have both laughed and cried as the words left my fingertips.

My blog has been and always will be, written from the heart about the things that matter to me both as a teddy bear designer, but also just as me.  Ten years on and I still have no clear idea of where my blog is heading, but I've no doubt my fingers will continue to do the walking!


A postcard from All Bear

I like to enclose a business postcard with my teddy bears when I ship them around the world and I've just about run out, so it's time for a new design for 2017!

Gorgeous Gulliver and his handsome buddy Tabasco modelled for my new postcard. I think they will do a sterling job for my little business and I hope my collectors enjoy receiving their new postcards! I am looking forward to enclosing one of these lovely new cards with each newly adopted teddy bear.

Looking good ... thanks boys!



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