11:54am Monday 7th July 2014
UNUSUAL teddy bears hand crafted by an Evesham artist are set to become famous as they feature in a new book.
Little Scruffs, tiny bears created by Jean Grogan, of High Street, Evesham, are the focus of The Way of The Bear.
The book, which is currently seeking a publisher, features photographs of the bears, described by their maker as "marmite" and some of the collectors who seek out new creations.
Mrs Grogan and her bears have also recently hit the headlines of the countries only magazine dedicated to our cuddly friends, The Teddy Bear Times.
"It was great having the three page article in the teddy bear magazine," said Mrs Grogan.
"The Way of The Bear originally planned to use photos of different artist's work but decided as my bears came in so many different styles he would use just my bears and visited a few of my collectors at their houses to take photos."
Despite this notoriety in the industry Mrs Grogan said the bears are largely unheard of in Evesham.
"Strangely enough my bears go all over the world but very few Evesham people know of them," she added.
This could change though in the centenary year of the start of the First World War as Mrs Grogan creates a popular soldier bear and a new sailor bear.
"I have been making soldier bears for a number of years, replicating the World War One soldier bears, but the sailor bears are new this year," said Mrs Grogan, who became a teddy bear maker after going on a weekend course. "During World War One, British soldiers were given a little bear by their loved ones to take with them, and these bears had eyes high up, which peeped out of the soldiers top pockets. I make my own with odd eyes or patches. These bears are a bit like Marmite, you either love them or hate them.
"It takes around eight hours for me to make a bear. The smaller the bear the fiddlier they are to make and each one is hand sewn and fully cotterpin jointed.
"They are all my own designs and I like to try lots of different styles."
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