My youngest daughter, Roberta, was around four or five years old when she decided my husband, Iain, needed a toy to take to work with him. Her school had recently had a “bring your favourite toy to school day” and she thought it would be a good idea for Iain to do the same.
The only problem was that the toy she had chosen was much too big, so we went out to look for a small teddy to go in his briefcase. We found a lonely green fluffy teddy about 7" high – the last one on the shelf! - and we bought him. Berta wrote note, in her best hand writing ("My name is Briefcase Bear I am here to be your friend!") and we then snuck him into Iain's briefcase.
What I didn’t realise was that Iain had an important meeting first thing the next day, so the well-intended gift didn’t just surprise him but also his superiors sat next to him when he opened his case to find a tiny shaggy teddy with a child’s hand written note around its neck staring at him! Thankfully, Iain’s bosses have a sense of humour, and Briefcase Bear has gone everywhere with him since.
It was Roberta (now in her twenties) who suggested that the bears I had recently taken to making be called Briefcase Bears, a reminder of the intention behind that first little bear – a brighter start to the day, a companion that doesn’t argue or talk back, and more importantly, a friend at work to cheer you up.
Llion is 12 inches high made from luxurious silk velvet that has been dyed exclusively for us. He has silk velvet paw and foot pads and is accessorised in a silk bow. Charles and Patricia Lester textiles. Original price £195. ADOPTED
Alf. Approximately 7 inches high made from vintage mohair. Fully jointed with glass eyes, “fed” with carded wool, wood wool and steel shot. His scarf is crocheted using extra fine merino wool and silk blend yarn. Now available from Cotswolds Glass and Crafts, Burford
Desmond is a 14 inch mohair bear in our take on a German style pattern. He is fully jointed with glass eyes, is "fed" with carded wool, wood wool and steel shot. He has a proper bow tie, pull it at your peril!
Now available from Cotswolds Glass and Crafts, Burford
Barry Bear. Approximately 11 inches high, made from vintage French Mohair with vintage French lace ruff. "Fed" with carded wool from North Wales and steel shot for added balance. The pattern is by fellow bear artist Sue Quinn; I made him to learn a new technique, so Barry is a one off by me! Available from Cotswolds Glass and Crafts, Burford
Robbie is a 12 inch hand dyed mohair bear that has been further distressed to give him a vintage look and feel. He is fully jointed, has glass eyes and is dressed in a handmade outfit. He is “fed “ with a combination of wood wool, steel shot and carded wool from North Wales
Bloomin is a new look 12 inch bear made from tea stained fabric. "Fed" with carded wool, glass pellets and wood wool, is fully jointed and has vintage boot buttons for eyes. Available from Cotswold Glass and Craft, Burford
Due to the current Coronavirus pandemic, forthcoming events are limited and subject to cancellation at short notice. All of our bears remain available via mail order. During this time of difficulty, we are pleased to offer Free Shipping to customers in the UK - select COVID-19 as shipping method at checkout.