Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Black Bear - Cornelius

Black Bears seem to have a special appeal, almost every artist will say that the black fabric is difficult to work because it is so hard to see what you are doing.  It is also quite difficult to get the facial features to show up sufficiently well.
I opted for light colour paw pads and the rather clever device, first used by Steiff many years ago, of the circle of red felt behind the eyes which gives them a particular emphasis.  I also prefer to use all black embroidery, the nose is sewn high in the very early style.

It is also quite tricky to photograph them, so I have lightened the images a little to help show more detail.

The idea for this particular bear had a rather odd beginning.  I had been admiring the buttonholes sewn onto doll clothing by my mother, and as a diversion to relax I tried to hand sew buttonholes myself.  Having worked my way through various threads to make them neat and scaled down for Teddy clothing I discovered some rather nice red silk.  From that the idea came to make bright red buttonholes on a waistcoat to complement the red felt discs behind the eyes of a black bear; That might seem a bit long winded but it is the way my mind wanders and it is typical of the rather tortuous route taken by ideas on their way from my brain to a bear.
So the reason that all the pictures show his bottom button undone, in addition to sartorial convention, is that I wanted everybody to see that I worked becomingly increasingly crossed eyed under a magnifying lamp, to hand sew red silk buttonholes on his waistcoat.
Cornelius also incorporates the extra floppy zone at his neck and shoulders, this along with the heavily fatigued finish on his fur, helps add to the aged appearance and feel.


He has been named Cornelius and is now available for adoption on my website at www.hugoshouse.com
Thank you for reading about Cornelius
for more information contact me as always at Gregory@hugoshouse.com


  1. What a wonderful bear.If I had what you have from brain to bear I would be happy.

  2. He's beautiful Gregory, very handsome as all your bears are and his waistcoat adds that dash of colour perfectly!