Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Story of Maxwell Revisited

I wrote this story in December of 2008. Since Maxwell has decided to add to his story, I decided to repost this with an addition at the end. Enjoy!


Maxwell is the first bear I ever made out of a pattern I designed by myself. All my previous bears were made from purchased patterns that I subsequently altered to fit my creative desires. He was also the first bear I ever made out of mohair. I had no idea, at the time, how to place the pattern on the mohair. So I placed it with the fur flowing upwards, which created an interesting effect, kind of like hair standing on end.

Maxwell was born on March 12, 1993, after I recovered from a serious illness which kept me in a hospital far away from my home, my friends, my family, and my teddy bears for what seemed like an endless period of time.

Maxwell was my inspiration for health; therefore, his name stands for maximum wellness.

His first great adventure was to have his photo taken by my good friend, Nora. So Nora took Maxwell and me to his first photo shoot at Cope park in Juneau, Alaska. Here are some of his favorite poses.



Maxwell also accompanied me on many hikes up to my favorite mountain, Sheep Creek. Here is a picture of us taking a little break.


Not long after Maxwell was born, he was purchased by one of my favorite teddy bear people, Don, who bought him for his lovely wife, Alma. Maxwell lived happily, I’m sure, with Don and Alma and many other bears for close to five years.

In 1997 I decided to move from Alaska to North Dakota to be closer to my parents. Soon after I made that announcement, Don and Alma invited me to their home. We all sat down together and they told me they both had the same thought…. that Maxwell should come back to live with me and accompany me on my journey to North Dakota.

So, Maxwell returned to North Dakota with me, where we spent a very wonderful year staying close to Mom and Dad. Here is a picture of Maxwell on the train to North Dakota.


Maxwell and I moved back to Alaska a year later in 1998 and Mom has come back to join us ten years after that in 2008.

Maxwell spends most of his time these days atop his favorite rocking horse here in our home in Alaska. He is old and a little imperfect. His joints are a little looser and he seems to have a slight crook to his stance. But his eyes and his heart tell of his past adventures and stories that wait to be told. So, like a tale that never really ends, Maxwell is not through with his journey.

Every once in a while when he gets picked up, dusted off, and shined up, he makes me smile. For teddy power never gets old. He has more ideas for his future and I’m sure I’ll learn of them when he sees fit. For now, we’ll just say TTNF. Dated December 8, 2008.

Update December 8, 2012.

Maxwell has informed me that it is time for him to return to his former home with Alma and Don. Alma is experiencing some health challenges and Maxwell needs to be by her side. So I packed him up in a little Christmas bag and he was delivered yesterday.


And we will stay tuned… for a teddy’s adventures are never truly over.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A Letter to My Bears

I recently had a situation in my life that definitely took the wind right out of my sails in regards to my teddy bear business. And as I come to a place of acceptance about the whole thing, I wonder to myself, how fragile am I, really? Do I give so much power to the opinions of others that I would literally stop doing what I love and believe the comments of one critical person?

In a moment of confusion I gathered up all my teddies and sat them here in the teddy bear room, unsure as to what I was going to do with them.

As I sat here reading a post on my computer, I glanced over to my left, at 12 little teddy bear eyes that seemed to be saying, “what will become of us?” And I realized that I had taken on someone elses opinion of them and quite simply discarded them from my life.

And then the light bulb came on. I saw the love in those little eyes and a feeling of joy and relief washed over me. I saw the truth that was clouded by fear; the love in the eyes of a teddy bear.


So, my dear teddy friends,

I will take care of all of you, until such time comes as you go to your assigned homes. And if the home you go to isn’t a loving home, that just makes your job a little more special. Because you will have to give all the love away that I have given you when I made you. And by giving away all the love that exists inside you, you will find your purpose and complete your assignment here on earth.

And thusly the healing begins.

Happy Thanksgiving to all my friends! Hugs, Vicki and the bears

Thursday, November 1, 2012


BenjaminRev (7)

Well, this little “face” has been sitting on my work table for a few days now and yesterday he said “NOW.” So, I complied, finished him up, made him a scarf, sat him down for the photo session, and viola. He is ready to “face” the world.

I love his little face! I hope you do, too!



BenjaminRev (1)

Thanks for the visit!

Vicki and the Bears

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Rita and Alice!


My most recent creations, two 6” “dressed” girl bears. I came across an old book of doll patterns that I purchased quite a while back, so I’ve been experimenting with that. It’s fun… and my “new” sewing machine makes it so easy to get into those small spaces.

Enjoy the pictures



And here is the Lovely Rita.




Thanks for coming by. Have a great week!

Vicki and the Bears

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Look what I just bought!!

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Yes, believe it or not, I just bought myself a 57 year old Singer sewing machine and I am just thrilled!

When I began my sewing career, I used a Singer Diana and it served me well for almost 30 years.

It finally bit the dust a little over a year ago and I replaced it with a Singer Heavy Duty machine, for which I paid about $200.00

What a disappointment that was. That machine is sitting in my closet right now. I won’t even drag it out for a picture. If I did photograph it, it would only be for the purpose of warning you not to buy it.

It only took a week or so for that particular Heavy Duty Machine to start skipping stitches… oh you know the story. It was a nightmare.

Well, I saved up my money and started searching around for a machine that I knew could handle the type of work I do. And also that was small enough so I could get into the very tiny spaces that I need to go to get my work done.

I found this, among many other machines on eBay.

I finally took the plunge and spent over $1,000 on this little puppy.

I know it seems like a lot, but it is amazing and is as strong as a little ox. Plus I can get into those little spaces and it is so small I can bring it with me if I ever decide to go quilting. Well, I’ll save that for another day.

As you can see, I guess I am pretty excited. I haven’t written this much in a blog for quite a while.

I had to share this with you. I’m curious. What kind of sewing machine do you use? I’ve always wondered what make and model of machines that others use. I’ve always been hooked on Singers. One because I had such good luck with my Diana.

Now I know it’s not so much the brand as when it was made. These old Singers were made to last through the ages, and they do.

OK, I’ve shared my favorite purchase with you. Soon, I’ll be sharing more bears that are being made with this magic little machine.

Hope your week is great.

Hugs to all, Vicki and the Bears

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Samantha-A Tiny Teddy Bear


Life seems to go by so quickly. Is it the age thing? I don’t know, but when I was a kid, it took forever for Christmas to get here.

And when I was working at a regular job, it took forever for Friday to get here, too.

My weeks go so fast, sometimes I just can’t believe it is already October and the leaves are falling from the trees.

I spend as many days as I can here in my little studio working on my teddy bears. This is the one place in the world where I feel totally at peace and where I find that bit of joy and fulfillment that I’ve searched for most of my life.

I am, once again, into the little bears and decided to introduce Samantha as I reenter my blog world. I have a few more bears to introduce later, but I wanted to at least get something posted here on the blog.

My apologies to all those whom I follow. I haven’t been checking in and I have missed you and your adventures. So, I am going to do some catching up today.

Enjoy and thanks for the visit!








Hugs from Vicki and the Bears!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Devon’s New Buddy, Buttons


OK, all you mini bear fans, introducing little Buttons, the final result of shrinking Devon’s pattern by 40%. He (Buttons) stands tall at 2 1/2 inches and is thread and button jointed, as you can see by his side shot.


We had a lot of fun yesterday, shooting pictures on the deck in the sunshine, so enjoy!



He liked sitting amidst the begonias…


….and perched on the Parsley.


Buttons (40)

He took a tumble on the deck railing.


No worries…. he got back up to try again.


And ended up in the shade, resting on the pin cushion.

Thanks for all your support and comments. Hugs to all. Vicki and the mini bears Smile

Thursday, August 23, 2012

In The Mini-Mood Again = Devon

Sometimes that old mini-mood just hits me and I must create a little guy. I seldom use the same mini pattern twice; mainly because I’m never quite satisfied with my previous results
This time I took one of my favorite patterns and reduced it the way they tell you to reduce it in the books. At least to my understanding.
I first reduced the pattern by 10%. Then I reduced that 10% reduction by 10%; and so on until I reached a 50% reduction on the pattern.
I am pretty happy with the results and although his little face gave me a bit of grief, we all ended up happy in the end. His name is Devon and he is 4 inches (10.16 cm) tall.
Now I’m going to take Devon’s pattern and shrink it another 40%… and see who emerges from that!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Beach Boys and Family Weekend!

Now for the fun part. That would be the “Fun, Fun, Fun,” part.


My husband (much to my surprised) (not really) managed to snag tickets to the Beach Boys concert at the Chateau Ste Michelle Winery in Woodinville, WA.

The concert took place on Friday the 13th of July and it was absolutely awesome. Here we are with a bunch of folks around our age; singing, dancing, bouncing a beach ball around, clapping, yelling and just having one heck of a good time!


As much fun as that was, I have to admit the highlight of the whole trip was to be able to have a visit with my beautiful daughter, “Barbara Ann” (it’s true) and her family.


“Ba Ba Ba Ba Barbara Ann, Ba Ba Ba Ba Barbara Ann… (well, you get the hint)…


My two granddaughters Kendra and Kayla.


And hubby, Dave.

We had an excellent weekend and the weather in Seattle was sunny and warm!

Unfortunately upon our return home we had a tough week, but now it’s time to celebrate the happy memories and get back to work on the bears!

Thanks for the visit. Hugs, Vicki