Brigits Bears by Brigit and Robbie Charles
Brigit & Robbie Charles and their hug of bears live in an old stone cottage with a large rambling garden in a small village in in the hills east of Perth, Western Australia. We both love old things and toys.
We have both worked in the furniture industry for many years, where Brigit used to design patterns and do cutting and sewing. Those skills transferred nicely to making bears.
Brigit who is originally from Denmark also has a background in crafts and doll making and has had hands on experience in a variety of crafts at a Danish craft school. The emphasis was very much on the quality of design and workmanship and the lessons learned there are now put into good use making the bears. The bears are original designs and handmade by Brigit & Robbie Charles and come in sizes from 2 inches up to 30 inches.
Our first mohair bear was made in 1990 at Robbie’s request for his birthday to keep his old childhood bears company.
From there bears were made for family and friends as presents and it gradually developed into a full time profession as people were asking us to make bears for them.
Many of the early bears were made from old fur coats which is why we hit on the idea of the leather noses, an embroidered nose just did not look right on the real fur, so the leather nose has now become one of the trademarks of a Brigit’s bear. Smaller bears under 5" still have embroidered noses
We recycle old real fur garments into heirloom teddybears and also use mohair, synthetic fur and upholstery fabrics. The larger bears in any materials have leather noses which are hand sewn and stuffed.
Brigit loves miniatures and is a member of a group which get together to "play" and create dolls house minis on a regular basis. So naturally she also makes tiny teddies, so far her smallest has been 1 7/8"(5cm) and the hardest thing with those little guys is actually turning them inside out and not losing a limb or tiny ear in the process!
We have been selling our bears since 1995 and many of them have found homes in America, Singapore and Europe as well as in Australia. We have taken our bears overseas for shows on several occasions.
We have quite a collection of bears many of them our own prototypes and some we just could not part with, also a few old bears and several artist bears acquired from swaps
Brigit enjoys teaching and has run many workshops in WA and overseas. She has also enjoyed taking classes from other artist and is always happy to try new methods and materials in the pursuit of that perfect teddy since we like many different types of bears from the very traditional to the more outrageous.
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