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Rin Sakura Bears
West Yorkshire
Posts: 66

Hi everyone,

I've been making bears for a while now and realise that I love making miniatures the most.  The problem I am still having though is that I still cannot get the placement of the ears right.

Because I keep taking off the ears and putting them back on to reposition them I squish the head out of shape so I have to take out half of the stuffing and re-stuff it.  Is there an easier way to attach the ears?  I've tried marking the position of them before I attach them but when they are on they don't look right.  I know with bigger bears it's possible to insert them before stuffing the head.  I do like and use the technique by Debbie Kesling whose book I learned from where she whip stitches them on and then adds extra stitches in order to give them a 'cupped' look.

I made one of the bears from the book 'How to Make Enchanting Miniature Bears' and I am pleased with the body but am struggling with the head (as usual bear_cry ).  I really do not like what I have done so am going to cut out the head and start it again.  If anyone has any tips for attaching ears or helpful tips for stuffing the head I would really appreciate it.

I usually make my own bears but have took the advice of others on these forums to practise the patterns of experienced bear artists a little more which really does seem to be helping my techniques a lot.

Thanks very much.

Kind regards

Rin

PS Sorry I put this on the wrong message board originally.

Michelle Helen Chaska, Minnesota
Posts: 2,895

Getting ears on the head evenly can be tricky. first, if your bear head gets misshaped, you might need to ensure you stuff the head more with stuffing. Just pack it in there. As for the ears. Pin both ears on first and check to see if they are even from all angels of the bear. The best angle is to turn the head around, nose turning away from your body, and you look down,  at the top of the head. It gives you a nice view of what need adjusting. One  ear may be pinned higher or lower and you can go back and forth adjusting.  Once you like the position, tac down like you read in you books. that's how I do it. Hope that helps.

Rin Sakura Bears
West Yorkshire
Posts: 66

Thanks Michelle.  That does help a lot.  Everyone will probably chuckle and I'll get my hand slapped but that's probably where I was going wrong.  I don't pin them on and check the angles I tend to attach one and then try and match the other to it.  This could also be why the head messes up eventually because I take one ear on and off so much to reposition and stitch it again and then squish the head as I whip stitch it to the head again.  (Also it could be to do with when I throw it to the other side of the room in frustration :lol:.)  I will check that I have put a good amount of stuffing in there too.

Thanks so much this clears up where I was definitely going wrong.

rikkisbears NSW Australia
Posts: 209

Hi,
I pin mine also, but with my really teenie, weenie mini's ie under 2 inches, it's hard to put  2 pins in for each ear so Ido a stitch each end, gives me a bit of wriggle room before I complete the sewing on.

Rin Sakura Bears
West Yorkshire
Posts: 66

That's a brilliant tip too Rikki, thank you  bear_original

rikkisbears NSW Australia
Posts: 209

quote Hi everyone,

I've been making bears for a while now and realise that I love making miniatures the most. 

Kind regards

Rin

Me too, lovely to find someone like minded. I also bought Debbie's book many years ago, it was so helpful. Took me a while to work my way down to sewing the miniatures ( started off learning on larger bears) but once I'd sewn my first mini , I was hooked.
Been many years since I'd last sewn a mini, ( made the odd larger rabbit or bear ) but recently went to a reunion and I was showing the ladies some of my tiny teds ( beauty of tiny mini's is I can carry 3 of them , my favourites, in a box that's no bigger than 2x3x1 inches) and they were fascinated at the size of them. Anyway gave me the enthusiasm to try and see if I could still sew them. Might take a bit more practice till I get back to where I was, my eyes aren't what they used to be, but it's so much fun getting back into sewing them again.

It's great to find people are still making the little ones

Rin Sakura Bears
West Yorkshire
Posts: 66

I love the little miniatures on your profile Rikki they are so cute.

I actually started with miniatures and after making some bigger bears prefer the little ones.  I don't know what it is about them but they always fascinate people with their size and charm, myself included  bear_smile

rikkisbears NSW Australia
Posts: 209

Hi Rin,
that's great that you were able to do the little ones first. I literally had to work my way down, no way could my fingers have handled the turning etc of tiny limbs , all thumbs at first.haha
I persevered though, I so wanted to make mini's after coming across Debbie's book. I think I had the book for at least a year before I dared to try. Couldn't stand the thought that I might not be able to manage doing them.

Luv big bears too, though I buy those, not too good at making anything above  6 to 8 inches, so why bother.

Rin Sakura Bears
West Yorkshire
Posts: 66

As silly as this probably sounds I find it easier to make miniatures of about 2 1/2 inches than the 8 inch bears I've made.  I find it easier to do really tiny stitches rather than bigger ones.  Although people find it really funny when they see me having to use tweezers to stuff the miniature ones.

rikkisbears NSW Australia
Posts: 209

Hi Rin ,
I can relate to that. 
I tend to find anything over 8 inches, I can't get a cute expression. Also my least favourite part is stuffing bears, so the less stuffing involved , the better. Haha.
Tweezers, never thought of that. I use the stick thingo from my heated rollers. Works ok too. Though  recently  I found  a stuffing tool for miniatures, except for the ridiculously large handle, the specially designed end of it ,pokes the stuffing in really well.

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