Tillington Bears logo

 

Why we're special

The science bit! Most of our bears incorporate special features not to be found in other collectors bears. Browse the features below to see just some of the reasons why our bears are head and shoulders above the rest.


puzzle

Design

Tilly designs personally every bear that we make. Experienced makers are able to look at a bear and see that Tilly created it. Then there are things that you can't see: things like double-stitched hems, and every part trimmed back to the stitch line to ensure that everything fits together perfectly.


Every bear we make has the sewn-in label that guarantees that you are getting a genuine Tillington bear.


claws

Claws

Claws are notoriously difficult to make. That's why you don't see many bears with claws at bear fairs. Some makers produce a bear with claws for a competition entry, but the difficulty of making robust claws that don't twist or break, and that look natural is daunting, so most people don't attempt it at all.


Our claws don't twist, don't detach and don't break (well, we've never managed it!). They are available on our two largest ranges currently, in ivory or black.


Any larger size bears that you ask us to make for you can be with or without claws.


Front paws closeup

Limbs

Tilly's latest design has radically different arms and legs. Arms and legs have armatures, which means that limbs can be adjusted more finely.


Instead of the traditional ultrasuede pawpads, the limbs are made completely in mohair (or alpaca), then all of the pawpads are needlefelted on individually. That's a labour of love!



Double neck joints

Double neck joints

Double-neck joints consist of two disc joints set at an angle to each other.

By manipulating the joints relative to each other, the bear can be posed on all fours, or sitting up like a conventional teddy. The bears in the picture opposite are of similar design but made in different furs; they show how versatile the choice of fabrics and the poses are.


Twisty waist bear

Twisty waists

Few makers incorporate this feature in their bears. You have all of that bother designing extra pieces and the cost is increased a little because the waist joint is a large one with a large bolt. Adding a twisty waist also adds to the time required to make the bear.


So why do we do it? Because the bear can pose in lots of new and unusual ways. Come and see us at our next show for a cool demonstration. Alternatively you can come and see us in Earith where you'll get a free cup of tea too.


Wrist joint

Wrist joints

Some of our larger bears now feature wrist joints. All our bears with claws have wrist joints, which increases the ways you can pose your bear.


As you can see from the picture, you can't see the join!


embroidered nose

Noses

Some bear makers use leather, plastic, or even Femo noses - this reduces the time to make a bear head dramatically. All of our noses are embroidered by hand. A typical Tillington Bear nose takes more than two hours to embroider. You can't short-cut quality.


Nut and bolt joints

Nut and bolt joints

Many bears have only cotter-pin joints. These joints have the disadvantage that the tightness of the joint cannot be controlled easily; in some cases they just cannot be tightened sufficiently. With the exception of wobble-head bears (obviously!) and wrist joints in our smallest bears (where access to the joint is very limited), all of our bears have nut and bolt type joints.


We don't need to tell you that larger bears have larger bolts...


Our nut and bolt joints all have locking nuts with nylon inserts (see the dark ring visible in the inset). Joints are tightened by just the right amount - and they won't loosen with time.


Materials

Fabrics

We use only the best materials, generally dense German Schulte mohair in pile lengths up to 41mm, alpaca, and pure silk.


Paws are usually ultrasuede or cashmere, but sometimes are made from real leather.


Finding suitable fabrics is not always an easy task for us as fabrics of the quality we demand are few and far between. We source our fabrics internationally.