One more poking you for answers Judi, LOL... :hug:
For the Tulip gloss paint ..... to fill in the teeth with and / or color the gum line with ...should the color be clear or same as the lining fabric ?
Have you ever tried to put a little gloss on the ultrasuede tongue to make it look wet ? That would look realistic.... Winney
Ahh, never thought of that Rikki. I'll keep that in mind. :hug:
Winney, I use black Tulip paint. If you use clear it will not show through enough and wouldn't look right, in my opinion. My lining fabric is always some kind of pinky-fleshy color, then I always use black for the gum line.
I haven't thought about making the tongue look wet. Great idea!
Winney...do you read?...are you there....... :P
If you take a look at a bear showing his teeth, you can see that the gum line is black.....at least the ones I have seen are balck. As an artist, Winney, you can do anything you like. You may find that maybe dark pink wuld work better in your bear's open mouth. I like the shiney because it look wet. I just run a thin strip of the thick piant alon gthe gum line, usually at the seam line, and then carefully around the teeth. I think it shows up in my photo posted earlier with the gold colored bear.
Let me know if this helps.
I like making laughing bears - somehow, using the open-mouth design gives so many possibilities to develop character and I love the excuse it gives me, to play with some of the more unusual fabrics.
My preferred method of working is to use quite a simple procedure ... it's just like inserting a footpad. The trick is to play around with the slit in the side head piece and with the shape of the mouth insert, to get a nice happy smile ...
... it's also important to stuff very carefully and to take great care when stitching in the mouthpiece. Oh, also it's essential to keep all the seam sewing absolutely spot on when making the head - even a millimetre or two adrift on the gusset, or the neck seam will throw the mouth out of shape and you may get a lopsided snarl rather than a smile!
By the way, I've also found it's much easier to insert the mouth piece before you insert the head gusset.
I must admit, I am completely inspired by Judi's wonderful open mouth work and would like to make some time to develop my own laughing bears further.
Chris (Pike) hasn't popped any of her pics on this thread yet, but her open-mouthed bears are absolutely stunning! If you get the chance to see one in the fur, do!! They are outstanding.
Judi you work is phenomenal, If I ever get to be a third as good as you I would be very happy..... I am still doing very basic bears, but get very inspired when I come on this site.. Judi did I read somewhere that you lived in Spondon once? I lived in Chaddesden before I was married and then lived in Duffield before Australia.......
Oh, Sue Ann, I don't think I've seen that one. What a doll!
Any suggestions, when it comes to creating that mouth insert shape? Drawings, pictures, examples, also help. I'd like to try one of these open mouth bears at some point, but I can't afford to make mistakes right now, and waste time.
Also, any particular suggestions about the order in which to piece the head? Paula gave her ideas above. You?
I'd love to read hints by anyone who's done this... including hints on what NOT to do.
I don't know if this will help, but here is a graphic of some of the ways you can create an open mouth. Certainly there are other combinations, but this might get you started. The top sketch is the easiest. Please keep in mind that none of the mouth inset pieces are drawn to fit the side head pattern pieces . . . it's just to show you shapes. I also do what Paula does . . . sew the inset in before adding the gusset. Sew the two side head pieces together from the nose point down to the front of the neck, leaving the slit for the mouth open. Open the mouth out as far as it will go, then measure from the top to the bottom of the opening . . . that is how long the mouth inset piece will be. Now it's just a matter of choosing how to shape your inset. I experimented with different shapes on several bears to find which result I liked the best. If you need more info and/or explanation, please let me know as I'm not a very good teacher. Perhaps others can explain their methods more clearly.
Paula...you know I love your bears - especially your laughing ones.
Sue Ann - your open mouth bear is really cute too...your bear has such a soft facial expression - so pretty and girly.
I have an open mouth head lurking around here somewhere, for my 4 inch pattern. I made the head at the beginning of this year but have never made the rest of the bear. It's lower jaw turned out a bit narrow - so it's kind of foxy looking. I guess I fix that by putting the slit higher up?? I'll try and finish it off sometime and post a picture...but don't hold your breath!
The bear you mentioned is called 'Hyacinth' and I'm thrilled to say she had her picture in the 'Teddy Bear and Friends' magazine a few months ago.
I was lucky enough to find her amazing collar at auction. It's vintage and from the 1920's and is made from lots and lots of little silver sequins. I made Hyacinth as a 'one-off' bear (her crazy pink fabric was from Intercal of course!) and she now resides in the US.
Sue Ann, your little girl bear is beautiful! She has such a wonderful expression and I love the tongue shading!
Shelli, my head designs for my open mouthed bears are very similar to Sue Anns, but I take out a small section of the fabric where the mouth line is drawn ... kind of skinny triangle shaped! As you can see, I like the lower part of my mouthpiece to be fairly wide ... too narrow and the bear can look a bit 'foxy'.
A little thing I do to make sure I put the mouth in straight, is to make four marks on the back of the mouth piece. I fold the fabric in half longways and make a little mark where the crease forms at the top and the bottom and I do the same thing again widthways. This means that when I pin the mouthpiece into place, I can use the markers to make sure I get the mouth straight in line with the seams top and bottom and also with the widest part of the opening.
Another thing I do, is actually draw my seam allowance around the back of the fabric ... this makes sewing it in so much easier! :thumbsup:
To insert the mouth piece, I pin first (making sure my marks are 'spot on' with the seams etc) then I baste (over sew) and remove the pins. Finally, I take the plunge and machine sew. I take especial care with the corners of the mouth at the widest point of the smile, because this is always the most difficult point to sew accurately and may even need sewing a couple of times for reinforcement. You can bet your bottom dollar that if this area is weak, the stuffing will always burst it! :wacko:
Careful stuffing is hugely important and worth taking some time over. The stuffing needs to be even to ensure a well shaped mouth, but also firm into the nose area and with this kind of mouth, it shifts easily, so it's not always a simple job!
Eileen, No masking needed at all. Like toadbriar said, it has body to it. What I would suggest is to play with it a bit on paper or some oher surface , to get a feel of how it flows out if the tube. Youdon't want to put too much on or it will gunk up your bear.
Once you apply it very close to the teeth, you can poke at it with a pointy tooth pick. I thought it was pretty easy to do.
Patsylakebears, Thank you so much for that flattering comment! :hug:
Yes, I was born in Spondon, March 3rd 1965. I was born at home in a duplex house. We immigrated to the United State Oct 18th 1965, so I was very young. We moved to California...talk about culture/climate shock for us. :o
Speaking of open mouths again. Great phots Sue Ann. I do mine differently. I apply a two sided lower jaw piece with an added inner mouth which is sewn in before adding to the bears head. By adding the jaw separately you can add a sewn allowance.
Great topic I came by the open mouth, I think, in a different way? I have always created my cats with a three piece- upper nose/cheek&jaw and a lower jaw piece with a center dart. When I decided to create open mouth cats I just added some extra seam material to the the upper and lower mouth pieces; added a mouth armature and an ultra suede mouth interior. I can very easily add teeth to the hard armature but for my cats that seems just too threatening But I think creating this type of pattern first, helps with the realistic creation of the open mouth?
KJ Lyons Design