Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Santa Came Early

Meet Linda Benson's Holly, a fabulous little bear holding her special cat friend.  She is 14 inches or 35cm from head to toe and fully poseable. With Linda's trademark leather nose and open mouth design she was a sweet bear I couldn't resist adding to my collection from the recent TWW Christmas Treasures on line show.

And how about these fantastic leather paws, she is a real treasure !

Here's Holly with my little Benson Family collection.  The very cute little bear at the front wearing green handmade boots and a beautifully smocked play suit is one of Linda's from 1994 and Matilda the fantastic life like Bilby is from 2009.

We are busy picking mangoes from our tree again this year and have a good sized crop that will keep us in frozen mangoes for most of next year. We haven't lost many mangoes to the bats and bat numbers seem to be down compared with last year.

As Christmas day is almost here I'd like to take the opportunity to wish all my beary good blog friends every happiness for the holiday season and an inspired and creative new year. Cheers for now, Robyn.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Show time!

Not long to go now ! The show opens on the 16th November 4pm New York time and you may still have time to vote for your favourite show preview bear.  Just click on the banner above which will take you direct to Teddies Worldwide where you will find a stunning collection of Christmas Carol themed bears. Eighty five    artists from eighteen countries are participating in this on line show over two days, so there is bound to be a treasure there for you.  Enjoy!

Oh ... I almost forgot to show you my preview bear, Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

A Beary Long Hibernation

As it's almost mango time again I thought I'd better come out of hibernation!!  Goodness gracious how time does fly but I must say I have enjoyed the break from bear making and with that came the chance to explore   some new ideas and sort out some old stash that has been waiting for attention.  I have become involved with a wonderful group called Knit-a-Square who work very hard to help and support kids orphaned by Aids in South Africa.  Please click on KAS to find out more about their work.  Since I joined the group late last year I've had a great time breaking into my treasured yarn stash, (some of which was over 30 years old would you believe !!!) and knitting up a storm. It has been a lot of fun putting my stash to good use and creating simple but cosy garments and squares.  Please check out their website, you might have a yarn stash that could help the kids too.  I also visited South Africa in April and spent a magic four weeks exploring  and travelling there with my daughter and granddaughters.  We went on safari of course and here is a photo of a sweet little ellie we fell in love with and a pair of Cheetah brothers who along with their mother are being monitored as part of a research programme that will eventually see these young males moved and released into a new reserve, the father of these brothers was cruelly taken by poachers.

After getting back into the swing of things after our trip,  I decided it was time for a big clean up and a new outlook .... so I  moved my work room back into the main house.  Phew! what a business but I'm glad I did it and I'm enjoying the new space and getting into bear making again.
I've always loved the old Australian teds in my collection and in particular a little Emil design made around  1945 - 1950. He's very sweet and obviously much loved by a previous owner who at some time gave him little pink eye brows no doubt with mums lipstick! it just adds to his charm.  Anyway I decided to use him as a model for some new designs I wanted to try.  I'm still working on these but here is a picture of 'Emil' and one of the teds he has inspired ... a work in progress.

and last but not least we are still enjoying last years mangoes ... they do freeze beautifully :-) 

Cheers for now, Robyn.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Mango Time

It is very warm and still here today and the humidity has been slowly building over the last couple of weeks towards our wet season ... but it also means our mangoes are nearly ready to pick ... that is if those pesky flying foxes leave some for us !

We've had a pretty good crop set this year and their beautiful pink blush just makes your mouth water. I enjoyed a successful Christmas Treasures on line show last weekend, with 2 teds off to the US and the other two here in Aus.  Daphne Blau of Teddies Worldwide did a great job in presenting this show and it was a real pleasure to take part in it!  The Sydney Teddy Bear Fair in   March 2012 is the next date on my calender and I've already got some plans and work in progress for that.  My work space was in such a shamozzle after last minute finishing for the Treasures show that I had to spend a day getting things back in some sort of order.  The doggies love keeping me company there and can generally be found all asleep under my sewing desk so they were quite surprised by all the cleaning up.  As I type our resident Green Tree Frogs have started to call so it must be going to rain again soon ... last night they were so loud we couldn't hear the news on the telly!  In a couple of weeks some of our family are heading south for Christmas, so we are having our Christmas get together before they go ... which means I better get busy with Christmas fare pronto!!!
Cheers for now and happy bearing, Robyn.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Christmas Treasures Preview

As the saying goes 'time flies when your having fun' which is just what I've been doing while getting ready for this online show ! 

 Merri is my Christmas Treasures preview bear and she's wearing a two tone red hand dyed mohair suit and Santa hat in readiness for the festive season, so pop over to where you can view all the fantastic preview bears and vote for your favourite too from each category!
  The show opens on 18th November 4pm New York time with 75 artists from around the world participating and is definitely something special to look forward to!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Beautiful and Busy Days

Just realised there has been a long gap between posts here! Bears, garden and family things have been keeping me pretty busy.

We've had a glorious couple of months weather wise and typically dry for this time of year, so it's all hands on deck in the garden getting things in order before the start of our wet season. Lots of mulching, plant feeding, pruning and so on, the things we can't do in the wet.

I don't put food out for the wild birds but I do make sure there is plenty of water for them, especially now in the dry, and so we have five bird baths in various spots around our two acre garden.

It's such a pleasure to see the birds these baths attract and late in the afternoon just last week, we counted 10 different bird species enjoying themselves, either in the Grevilleas for nectar, or having a drink and a freshen up in a bird bath.

There have been some unusual bird sightings too of late and one that is not usually found here is the Red-tailed Black Cockatoo. They are fascinating birds to watch and there has been a big mob of them hanging around the Cairns district for a few months now.
Of course our resident Sulphur-Crested White Cockatoos are totally put out by these beautiful black interlopers and let them know in no uncertain terms, dive bombing them as a last resort to get them to move on! The Black Cockatoos are not fazed by this, they are real laid back bushies and take their time, much to the white cockies disgust!

However it hasn't been all birds and garden, I have been working on three new bear designs, one of which is a sweet little panda, and also getting ready for my next bear show, now only SEVEN days away! Eeeek!

I'll be travelling down south next weekend forThe Brisbane Bear Fair which will be held next Sunday 18th September between 10am and 4pm at the Holiday Inn , Roma Street, Brisbane.

This will be the first Brisbane Bear Fair organised by Melissa Kemp of Bear Fairs Australia, so looking forward to a successful event that hopefully becomes a regular date on our bear calender here in Queensland.

And here are a couple of teds that will be coming along to the show with me,as you can see they are still bare bears, but not for long though as they are both a work in progress!

I'm looking forward to catching up with my bear friends at the show !

Last but not least we are thinking of our American friends today and remembering.

Beary best wishes,

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Happy Days

My grand daughters are in the middle of a two week school holiday break, so it has been good to spend some time with them and catch up. Early last Friday morning we set off to Rusty's Markets, this is an icon in Cairns CBD, which sells beautiful fresh local fruit, veg., produce, and all manner of things from Friday through to Sunday. We like to get our supplies there as opposed to the supermarket so it's a weekly pleasure to go and shop.

After Rusty's we headed off to visit HMB Endeavour which is a replica of Captain James Cook's iconic ship of discovery.  Endeavour is making it's first circumnavigation around Australia and is currently visiting Cairns.  We had a fascinating time exploring the ship and we were amazed how small it is considering it accommodated a total of 94 sailors, not to mention sheep, pigs and poultry as well !!

Then off to find a yummy late lunch on the Cairns Pier, a lovely end to the day.

The Gold Coast Teddy Bear Fair I attended 3 weeks ago was a very happy event even though we had unusual cool and rainy weather for the first day.  For some reason the photos I took have not come up clear enough for me to post but Kympatti will be posting photo's of the event soon.  I'm also happy to report two adoptions this last week that were a direct result of the show, so that was a nice post-script.
During the week following the show I attended two workshops held in the Kympatti Studio at Broadbeach. The first was a terrific one day felting workshop with Geri Williams, entitled a Bunny in a Shoe ! and the second a two day workshop  with Linda Benson.  This was a wonderful workshop creating Linda's 'Gregore' who has open mouth, with tongue, open shut eyes, leather nose and leather trapunto paws detail, as well as extra neck and wrist joints. 'Gregore' kept us very busy indeed but Linda, in her inimitable easy going style, created a calm and very happy atmosphere.  Needless to say I haven't finished my pieces but as soon as I do I will show you here.

The girls are off in a swimming camp today, the weather is just right for that sort of thing here at the moment.  We'll have a couple of days to do things together at the end of this week, then its back to school for them.  
Wishing you a beary good week,