Thursday, October 15, 2015

How to Turn a Hobby Lobby Plush Bear into a Stylized Antique Steiff Bear

Last year I wrote a blog about creating your own A Simple Way to Make Your Own Heirloom Santa and other posts on how to add goodies to your Santa Claus figures to make them your own Heirloom Santa. 

I'm on the hunt year round for little toys, wreaths, trees, and ornaments that will add to my Santa's stash and I try to find ways to make them more personalized as in the case of this Hobby Lobby craft bear.
He's only about 4' tall and originally cost $3.97. 

I actually picked him up for 55 cents at my favorite place Rolling Hills Ministries.
He's quite a fuzzy mess with no details. He looks more like a baby wookie than bear!
So...I took a pair of scissors and gave him a little trim.

And this is how to make a craft store bear look like a well loved antique Steiff bear.

Or close enough...

I use hair cutting scissors (shears) that I picked up at Walmart. 

This isn't the first time I've trimmed down a teddy. If fact, I usually trim them around the eys and the top of the nose to make their eyes more visible and give him some personality.

The bear isn't changing color, that was the lighting in my kitchen.

But you can see the vintage, well-loved, personality coming out.
I accidentally pulled off one of the arms...but it popped back into place. It would have been much easier to trim if ALL the appendages had come off that easily, but they didn't and I did not want to risk breaking on of them.

I just want to make a note here that I snipped the fur over a plastic bag so the mess would not be as...well...messy!

Several snips later, I was done (this one took me about 30 minutes)...
I tied on a bow and added him to one of my own Heirloom Santas!
This is a 15" tall Santa I found on eBay. He is handcrafted with a sculpted face, rabbit fur trim, and a mohair beard attached in strands. He came with nothing so I am enjoying this opportunity to start fresh and I think my trimmed down teddy is just the place to start.
I also added a special pewter millennium ornament that is too heavy for my other Santas to hold. 

This guy was constructed on some seriously strong wire so his arm is sturdy enough to hold the ornament. He is sitting on an antique tapestry doily layered over a vintage linen Battenburg doily that I picked up at an estate sale.

I also have a small silver pocket watch I want to add to him. He's the only Santa that already has silver accents. Most of my other Santas have gold.
Just some fun ideas to make your favorite Santa Claus figures even more special.