Vintage Mink Bears by Kathy Myers

Vintage Mink Bears by Kathy Myers
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Saturday, February 9, 2019

Custom Order #18 ... Work In Progress

For Cathy

I have two mink garments to work from. While they are both brown the jacket is just a little lighter shade of brown. The original request was for two teddies but the pattern choice was left up to me ... of course, if you leave it up to me I will make one of each. So I need to verify with Cathy if she has a preference on the pattern and if she wants me to use both minks or just one. If I use just one I prefer to use the stole because the pelt is solid which is gives a smoother look to the teddies. 

I'm starting on the fabric pattern while I wait for Cathy's reply ....

I got a quick reply from Cathy and she decided that she would like two teddies from Pattern #2 and if possible to use the stole for both.


I cut up the stole 
and I was wrong ...
it isn't a solid pelt afterall.
As you can see it is a lot of little strips of mink sewn together.

It is a small stole so, at this point, I'm not sure that here is enough pelt for two teddies.

When I lay out the pattern I have to be aware of the direction that the hairs grow.

I can't hardly believe it but I managed to get all the pattern pieces on the stole's small pelt ... just barely. I had to switch some pieces in order to make everything fit. It was like putting together a puzzle.

Next, I have to cut out each piece. Then I have to trim the edges around each piece. This can be very messy ... I work over a trash-can to try to catch most of the scraps.

each piece has been cut out

I cut the seam allowance around each piece.

Now I can start sewing.

Just a side note: I was hoping to work on this order on a regular schedule (hopefully daily) ... but life gets in the way ... recently both my daughter and son-in-law were very sick with the flu. Fortunately, they both had their flu shots this year so my son-in-law recovered in less than two weeks. Unfortunately, since my daughter has Cystic Fibrosis she ended up with pneumonia and is currently on strong IV antibiotics. Since she has a port-a-cath in her chest she did not have to go into the hospital ... so I put on my mommy-nurse hat and I help with her infusions 5 times a day. And if that wasn't enough, my cat, Gypsy, got sick! I've spent the last two days in the vet's office. She had to have a procedure where she was sedated. She had labs that showed that she has an infection but they were not sure where. So she had to have an ex-ray today that showed that she had kidney stones. Well, $800 later, I finally went home with Gypsy, new cat food to help dissolve the stones, and antibiotics.  Whew!!! Sorry, if this order is taking longer than I wanted but ... life gets in the way.

Lots of hand-sewing! Both teddies are sewn and now I have to clean up the seam lines, turn the pieces, prepare the armature, and stuff each piece ...

one bear body ....

two bear bodies ....

two bear heads ....