Saturday, 16 October 2010

Mending an Antique Teddy Bear 3

The final part of this very special project was the most difficult. It was the customers wish, that especially the facial expression of her teddy should be kept the same. But how could this be done? The muzzle was badly damaged and had lost a lot of stuffing, the embroidered nose had traces of older layers of yarns, so I supposed it had been mended over and over again. Of course it's one of the most exposed parts of a teddy.

First I made a "new" muzzle, starting with paper patterns I made after the old muzzle. As with the other damaged parts of the teddy, I used some Schulte mohair, left side up. This time I left the pile, I thought it would kind of "wrap" better around the original part, thus being also better bolster the muzzle and give it a nice shape.

The two lateral pieces were sewn together. Only after that step I basted the middle part of the nose in place, just to make sure the new muzzle has exactly the same shape as the old one, not too loose, not too tight. This had to be done with extra caution - I didn't want to do more damage to the teddy, and the original fabric and stuffing was very brittle and fragile.
Then I pinned the new muzzle right over the old one in place, and fixed it with ladder stitch.

Finally, I embroidered a new nose with black cotton yarn. The teddy, according to his owner, never seemed to have a mouth, so I just left it that way.
Further I fixed the eyes again, as they were quite loose. The ears needed mending as well, and since there was quite a big hole on the back neck, the head dangled too much and made the hole even bigger. After re-stuffing and closing the hole, the teddy could keep his head upright again - he looked a lot better.

As the whole fabric of this fellow was already very thin, I decided to make some clothes for the teddy. As he obviously was a boy, he got a shirt, checkered trousers and shoes.
I was quite pleased with the result. The teddy looked less tatty, and still he showed the traces of time and the authentic look of an antique and very loved teddy.

1 comment:

  1. Oh my, poor teddy. I can see that after he met you he was just fine....lucky he found you!


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