Intro: Amber Bear
This is Amber a jointed, mohair bear.
Approximate material costs £45
Step 1: Choosing Mohair and Laying Out Your Pattern
I use a 1/4 of medium pile mohair and scraps form previous projects . long pile fur is used on this bear for the backs of ears and the top half of her chest. Lay patter pieces so that little fur as possible is wasted, making sure the backs of ears and chest are laid on a separated piece of longer pile fur.
I use ultra suede for the paw pads so lay the paws on a well co-ordinating piece of ultra suede.
Then I use a scalpel to cut out the fur carefully as it will not cut off the long pile .
Step 2: Sewing and Stuffing
Pin the arms, legs, and head together ( wrong sides together) and sew , leaving a gap for stuffing as shown in the picture. ( legs- front of thigh, arms- back of shoulder, head- neck hole)
Long s short pile fur for the body need to be sewn together first and then the two halves of the body are sew together leaving a stuffing hole about 2 " long in the middle of the back.
A large back of stuffing will be used on just one bear as you need to really compact the stuffing . the pieces of the bear should feel solid.
Stuff the arms and legs half way and stuff 1/4 of body then make a simple bean bag filled with plastic pellets ( right hand photo) as this adds extra weight to the bear, This will be inserted along with the rest of the body stuffing after the joints have been installed.
Step 3: Using the Cotter Pin Joints
I like using cotter pin joints as I feel I can twist then tight and prefer installing then to nut and bolts.
These are size 30mm joints.
Picture left shows what is needed per joint, 2x arms, 2x legs, 1x neck.
I use the tip of my embroidery scissors to pierce a whole in the mohair where I want to place the joints.
Picture right shows what the joint should look like from inside the arm/leg , picture middle shows what joint should look like from inside the body where u choose to place the limbs. Use pliers to curl each arm of the cotter pin into a tight spiral.
Then fill the rest of the, arms and legs with stuffing and sew together ( I use a curved needle )
The body will be stuffed and sewn after making and attaching the neck joint.
Step 4: Detail the Paws
I like to sew pads into the paws, using the same colour thread usually as the one used for the nose. IT has to be thick as you need to pull hard to create the dips in the pads. Use a really long needle so u can make large stitches .
I use Copic markers to add shading around the stitches.
Step 5: Adding a Face
Most important part of the bear is getting the feature right on the face. Take a long time laying different styles a sizes of eyes against different colour threads for the nose.
Insert one half of the cotter pin joint into the neck whole and then gather the neck hole in with several circles on hand stitching.
Use a long needle and 100% linen thread (picture right) to pull the bridge of the nose in a little which ads some more shape to the face and the attaché the eyes, ( glass 10mm eyes on amber)taking the threads out of the head under the neck and tying off so the will be hidden when body and neck are attached.
hand sew the ears on.
Now the nose
Step 6: The Nose
I use DMC cotton pearl (3) for the nose.
mark out the shape you want with either pins or an air soluble marker. Keep the stitches as close as possible to get a smooth and thick appearance, as you don't want any tufts of mohair peeping out. Tie off threads under the neck again.
Step 7: Extra Detail
Attach the neck to the body using the cotter pin which you have already inserted into the head, Hand stich the fur at the top of the body to gather it in before attaching the joint.
Finish stuffing the top of the body and hand se the back with several rows of stitching.
Brush out all ears to release any trapped fur.
Use embroidery scissors to trim away and mohair around her muzzle of inner ears.
My last detail is using the copic markers again to shade areas.
One finished Amber,
Runner Up in the
Soft Toys Challenge