Monday, 3 January 2022

Portfolio of a Numpty



Over the Christmas holiday I have been busy creating my annual portfolio of teddy bears. This is something I have done since around 2006, which would have been around the time I first became aware of the convenience of photobook software. I find photobooks a handy way to record each year's collection of teddy bear designs and it's lovely to be able to flick back through previous years' work; a great way of sparking new ideas, or developing old favourites.

I usually add a page of personal photographs taken during the year too, the idea being that they place my work within the context of my life. For me, making bears isn't a separate element of my life, it is very much part of the whole and ideas for teddy bears are often inspired from snippets of daily life.

When I finished adding last years' creations to the portfolio, I noticed colour was a dominant force throughout 2021, with lovely lilacs, pinks and soft pastels being particularly popular, pandas made a welcome return and the few festive teddy bears I made, were adopted straightaway.  Also, for the first time in a while, bigger bears were very much back in demand, leaving me little time to develop smaller ranges... in fact, I only made one 8" Tiddler Teddy this year! Regrettably, I didn't make a single Tweedy Ted in 2021 either, so there will be plenty of creative areas for me to consider working on during this coming year. I am delighted to say, all the bears I made found new homes and now reside in countries around the globe.

Happily, I started work on my first bear of 2022 yesterday. Not so happily, there was a bit of a disaster in my workroom when, for the first time in almost forty years of sewing machine ownership, I managed to sew a perfect stitch right through my fingernail and fingertip... not my finest hour and apologies to the universe for turning the air bright blue in my workroom while I extracted said throbbing digit from my faithful Pfaff. I now have firmly embedded, pale gold thread, hanging from my throbbing fingernail. Needless to say, after almost thirty years of injury free teddy bear making, I now feel rather a numpty...

As I approach the end of a year, I always ask myself if I think I will have any more teddy bears in me left to make in the coming year and so far, the answer has always been a resounding 'of course you do Paula!'  So, I hope you will be happy to hear that 2022 will be no different as I am buzzing with plans for lovely bears and can't wait to start sharing them with collectors again. I have new mohair on order, a tidy workroom and the first bear of 2022 in progress! 

Hello 2022. Here we go!

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