I was given a very nice real fur coat but I do not know what kind of fur it is. The color is a golden yellow and it is wavy. It actually looks very much like wavy mohair. It feels somewhat course also. I know it is real fur as the underside is leather and sewn in different sizes of pelts. Can anyone recognize this kind of fur and enlighten me. It would make a beautiful bear!!! Thanks! Bare Bears by Jai
I'm betting its some type of goat or lamb. Sometimes the furriers will stamp what it is on the hide. No matter what, you are going to want to make a BIG bear from this! It can be done, and the results are glorious, but depending on how thick the hide is, will depend on how hard it will be to sew.
In the past I've made two bears from mouton (sheepskin) and one from Persian lamb. I usually handsew and normally it takes me roughly two weeks to handsew a mink/muskrat type bear.......it took me two MONTHS with the mouton! Oh, and you'll definitely want some form of finger protection (I use leather 'thimbles' that I make for myself from moosehide), and you'll want to use a glover's needle ....also called a leather needle....and you'll have to line the hides with something protective like muslin.
If you haven't seen it yet, Nancy Tillberg's "Teddy Bears with a Past" is an EXCELLENT reference book for all things real fur I simply cannot praise it highly enough, as she walks you through everything with making a real fur bear.
Jai, I purchased a coat very simialr to that a few years ago and was told that it was lamb or goat. So , that's my best guess. It is very pretty and yes it does look like mohair. Then again mohair is sheared goat fur after all LOL
edited to add: Ditto to what Debbie said ! I assume the hide is kind of thick on this one. And, yes , Nancy's book is fantastic !
Thanks to all of you for your responses to my question on the type of fur. Whatever it is, it should make a really good looking bear or maybe even a cute puppy of some breed. And, yes, I have Nancy T's book on "Bears with a Past" and have read it extensively, over & over. I have also taken her on-line computer classes. She is great!!! In addition, I went from Nebraska (where I live) to Florida several years ago to take a one-on-one real fur class with a wonderful bear artist, Pat Fairbanks. I am totally addicted to this hobby which has actually turned into a full-time business for me from my home. I am booked through the end of this year with orders. I love working with both mohair and real fur, even though I am not always sure of the type of fur such as this one. And, yes, mouton is rough to work with. I have a mouton bear on my website and I also just finished another one last month. If you care to, check out my real fur bears at www.jeanettesummers.com Love to share (or show off) my bears!! Comments/critiquing are always welcome. Thanks again everyone!!! Jai
As a miniaturist myself I'd say that it will be very important that you lay out your pattern pieces so that those pesky random seams do not get pattern pieces like limbs (long & narrower - than a body, that is) cut out of them.
I always watched that the limbs and center headpiece—muzzle—was cut out of the sections with the fewest seams criss-crossing them. It was much harder to turn body parts with the seams running every which way. Unless your bear is going to be larger than 8" or 9" anyway...
Your name is not one I've seen in my travels before. Do you mind if I ask how you pronounce it?
Like Joy? Just curious!
Hi Jai, and Welcome to Teddy Talk. You sure have some to the right place for all sorts of bear making advice and lots of great people.
I too think the coat looks like goat. When I started in bears several years ago I only worked with real fur...all kinds. I think my favorite has to be alapca fur, not the mohair kind but the on-hide fur. You probably already know this but just incase you don't, make sure you line your fur before sewing. It will increase the life of your bear.
I have a basement full of fur just waitng to be born of bears. (sigh) so many bears to make...so little time. But we are having fun aren't we?!!!
Cute bears on your site. :clap: :clap:
Me too, Judi--no space in my cold room for food anymore!
Jai, your fur is almost certainly goat, if the fur is coarse and the pelt fairly heavy. I've got some Mongolian Lamb that looks very similar, but the fur is silky and the pelt is very thin.
Here's a pic of a little bear made from Nancy's Antique Bear pattern for a charity auction, in the Mongolian Lamb--
Thanks again to all of you who responded and thanks for the compliments on the bears on my website. And to Bobbie R. you asked how to pronounce my name. My real name is Jeanette but I go by Jai (pronounced Jay but supposedly the feminine spelling???) I like to tell people that since my wonderful hubby helps me so much (usually doing the housework while I'm bearmaking--but he also helps me joint my bears) I wanted to include him in on my bussiness name which is Bare Bears by Jai. Well, with my name being Jeanette and his name being Ian, I say the Jai stands for (J)eanette (A)nd (I)an. I'm pretty new to Teddy Talk but enjoy reading and learning from the other posts. I'm trying to get brave enough to enter some shows or contests. I did have a bear in the Real Fur article in Teddy Bear & Friends several years ago. I'm proud of my work but maybe still a little shy of entering any big shows. Maybe someday. Right now I am overwhelmed with all the orders I have in real fur to get done before Christmas.