Good Questions: Making an Upcycled Bear

Good Questions: Making an Upcycled Bear

Carrie McBride
Oct 10, 2008

Reader "The Diving Belle" wrote in with an interesting DIY/How To question:

A young couple I know (and love) have just announced they will be parents in the Spring. As they are very eco-aware, I'd love to make their baby a "green" teddy bear, using recycled fabric and such. Any thoughts on locating a good pattern and materials? Many thanks! I'm SO excited about this baby!

(Note: Include a pic of your problem and your question gets posted first. Email questions and pics with QUESTIONS in subject line to: nursery(at)apartmenttherapy(dot)com)

What a lovely idea. Our son received a handsewn bear when he was born and we know it will be a good friend to him for many years.

How you go about making your bear will partly depend on how skilled a sewer you are. If you're looking for something very easy that you can do in a few hours you might want to check out Sock and Glove which includes instructions for transforming socks and gloves into a bear, dog, cat, monkey, elephant, panda and fish. Use one of your own (clean) orphaned socks or gloves or find one with a cool pattern or great color at a thrift shop or garage sale.

How about making a bear from an old sweater? Perhaps one with a stain or moth holes. You could try one of these sweater bear pattern books which includes patterns to cut out and instructions. They're available for $10 from Etsy seller Danger Crafts (who also sells kits and completed sweater bears).

Need some inspiration or motivation? Look at this Flickr set with beautiful upcycled bears made by Daniela and Chris of Hasenpfeffer Incorporated (sold through their Etsy shop).

We'd also recommend taking a look at the website Softie Making which is a great resource for tutorials and guidance on all things softie.

Good luck and have fun!

Readers, can you point The Diving Belle toward any good bear tutorials or resources?

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