Teddy Bears


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As a leftover of my childhood, I collect teddy bears.

I don't specifically collect "collectable" bears - I get bears of character. These range from Disney beanie Pooh bears (they are very cute), to scented bedroom accessories, to novelties for times of year.

None of my bears are kept in boxes, cases or packed away. They live on shelves, chairs, tables and the bed. I remove the enormous plastic and card tags that are affixed to collectable items. And the bears are picked up, cuddled and talked to regularly - by me and by my numerous nieces and nephews.

About Teddies

The origin of the name must be pretty well known by now - they're called "teddies" after the American president Theodore Roosevelt, and the name came about as the result of a hunting incident and a political cartoon. There's a little confusion over whether the first teddy was German or American (it depends where you read the story of the origins). I'm sure there are discussions about it out on the net somewhere....

What's the appeal?

I have no idea.... But the teddy's appeal seems to be without end. Maybe it is a childhood thing. My first clear memory of a toy is a teddy I got for Christmas when I was three. Her name became Tricia and she stayed with me until I was 13. Many children are given teddies as first toys, and maybe that's the basis for it all - a lasting reminder of a safe and happy time

Collecting Bears

The hobby of collecting bears has the formal name of Arctophily (I think it comes from the Latin for bear). Its reputed to be a fairly recent hobby, although I'm sure over the lifetime of the teddy, hundreds of people have quietly collected bears without them being specifically "collectable" or thinking that its a proper hobby.

Even with recent origins, the hobby has grown over the past few years and the possibilities are endless. You can choose to collect antique bears or specialise in one of the many types of bears aimed specifically at the collectable market - ranging from limited editions by classic manufacturers to beanie bears and one-of-a-kind artist bears. My collection has no real theme or aim, and I don't get bears just to collect them. I just accumulate bears because I like them and the particular specimen appeals. He/she might have a certain face, demeanor, posture, outfit - I once got a bear because he was the last one on the shelf and he looked so lost and lonely, my heart went out to him and I took him home.

So the purpose of these teddy pages is just to share my bears. If they're from a particular manufacturer, I'll list the info. That way, if you like my bear you can go looking for one of your own.