You may remember this little guy from the post called “Teddy Bear”. Well it’s time to unveil his new look!
After some discussion within the family it was decided that the bear has more sentimental value than it could possibly have monetary value, so my sister set out to restore him to his past glory.
First was the music box within him. It was half filled with the stuffing materials, so Judy cut it open and cleaned it out. The wood shavings were wound around the canister and amongst the teeth. Each piece was pulled away with tweezers so that she didn’t damage anything. Apparently oil from hands will damage the mechanisms so Judy was careful not to touch anything. She then made a new cotton cover once everything was cleaned out.
The next part of the restoration was the head of the bear. The indents made it easy to get the eyes in exactly the right place!
Third came the joints. The joints were reused and each set of joints varied in materials; some were a thick compressed cardboard, while others seem to be tough insole material that were in boots when we were young. (one was even alligator skin texture) The cotter pins were replaced in the new bear. (pictured below is one of the cardboard joints)
The ‘new’ bear has ‘antique gold’ European mohair and heritage felted wool soles and paws. The eyes, hand painted glass with wire loops, were reused. If you look closely the eye don’t match as one has a larger pupil. The head, arms and legs are stuffed with the original stuffings, with some of the body stuffing was used to replace the ‘hole’ that developed in one leg. The new body has modern stuffing around the music box.
And here is the restored bear looking cuter than ever…
And finally…he finished his journey back to the little boy that owned him all those years ago!
Special thanks to my sister Judy for all the work she did in restoring this little bear, and for the pictures and account of how she did it.