Teddy Bears of Witney (Exclusives only) (Witney (Oxfordshire))
In the current, highly competitive, bear market we’ve noticed that many other bear artists have a page of their website displaying awards that they have either won or in which they have been nominated; additionally phrases such as “award winning” are used on advertisements. Apart from announcing a result at the time, we haven’t done much in the “trumpet blowing” department but maybe the time has come?!
Jean has been making bears on a full time basis since 1993, joined by Bill late 1995/early 1996 and Bear Bits has entered 19 competitions, and during these 22 years and we have been winners or runner up in all of them. Whenever we have entered a competition we have made ourselves a rule that our entry must include either a technique or change of style that we have not included in any previous competition so we have not necessarily entered something every year e.g. the 1996 entry “A week of Bears” included Tuesday’s Bear (full of grace) – a small bear doing an arabesque, standing on pointed toe and with a shoulder joint that allowed one arm to be held above her head. In this year’s Excellence in Bear Artistry Awards, we have given Peter extra pose-ability by ‘under filling’ his body with polypellets but incorporating a neck-to-tail backbone (armature) to supply the necessary support; we have also given him claws – although not a new technique to us, the last time we made claws for our bears was as far back as 1997!
Below is a list of the awards we have won.
2015 Golden George - Piqa was one of the final 3 nominees in the Master Class Category 5 Nature Bears and finally judged as runner up to Masaya Sato’s entry.
2014 Golden George - Polar Moon was the winner in Master Class category 5 - Nature Bears
2013 Excellence in Bear Artistry - Winner - Tableaux class
2013 French Teddy Awards - Hanging On II won second place in the Group category.
2013 Golden George - Peter was the winner again in the Realistic Bears class
2012 Excellence in Bear Artistry - Winner - Realistic Animals and Bears class with Peter, a realistic brown bear.
French Teddy Awards - Peter also won the Realistic Bears class in this competition!
National Teddy Bear Artist Awards – Winner – Teddy Bear Friends Class with a very special Hare (hares are a new development and since the first one, late 2011, we have been tweaking the pattern to improve it). We were awarded 2nd place in the Panda Class for our 40cm alpaca panda, including a subtle open mouth (this was the first time we had used our open mouth design on a bear smaller than 56cm). Please see the 2012 archive and the Bears page (click top right of this page)
2011 National Teddy Bear Artist Awards – Winner – Natural Bear Class and BEST IN SHOW!! Arthur (see 2011 Archive) was made from an extremely luxurious, very dense, plush fabric – 30mm long pile, with a lot of movement and a contrasting mid brown mohair was been used for his muzzle and inner ears, blended with subtle airbrushing. Arthur’s nose was embroidered in a more complex way than usual and he had an open mouth.
2007 Readers Choice Awards, Teddy Bear Scene – Winner – Bare Bear Class – I’ve got a Secret (Maks - a large, fully detailed realistic bear made from long pile cream synthetic faux fur with black mohair inserts to the muzzle and inner ears and needle sculpted pads and 8in Minim – the smallest realistically shaped bear with double neck joint and proper paw pads made by us to date.
2006 Readers Choice Awards, Teddy Bear Scene – Winner – Bare Bear Class – Happiness is a Hug (A large detailed realistic bear with airbrushed shading, holding a 4in teddy and a 4in bunny in its paws)
2004 Readers Choice Awards, Teddy Bear Scene – Winner – Bare Bear Class – Safety Zone (A mother polar bear and her cub - the cub was the smallest to date with a realistically embroidered nose, a double neck joint, wrist joints and 3D pads)
2002 British Bear Artist Awards – Winner – Group Class 17in and above – Where’s my Teddy? (A large brown mother bear with 2 smaller cubs, all very detailed and a 4in teddy bear.
2002 British Bear Artist Awards – Winner – Individual Class 17in and above – The Caramel Bear (a large light brown bear with wrist and ankle joints, needle sculpted 3D pads, a very complex embroidered nose, fabric dyed on the reverse to reveal the darker shading where the pile was trimmed on head and inner ears)
2001 British Bear Artist Awards – Runner up – Group Class 12-17in Ice Bear Family (A mother polar bear with 2 cubs all with double neck joints, drop paws, wrist joints and 3D pads. The mother polar had a more complex detailed embroidered nose than previously
1999 British Bear Artist Awards – Winner – Group Class 12-17in – A Celebration of Bears (4 natural bears – black bear, grizzly, polar and panda – each with a double neck joint and an asymmetric joint in each ankle so they could each sit, stand, kneel and lie out)
1999 British Bear Artist Awards – Nominated/Finalist – Individual Class 12-17in – Panda (An accurately marked panda with double neck joint)
1997 British Bear Artist Awards – Nominated/Finalist - Group Class 17in and above – Stuff and Nonsense. (Stuff – a large life-like bear with a realistically embroidered nose, Trapunto pads and very natural looking long claws – Nonsense – a 1920’s “flapper” with eyelids, eyelashes, a feather boa and head dress.
1996 British Bear Artists Awards – Winner - Group Class 12-17in – A Week of Bears. (7 different styles and sizes of bears including a teddy bear, a character bear, a ballet dancing bear, a panda, a bent legged bear and a realistic bear.