Friday, 6 June 2014

A Very Large Visitor in a Sorry State

I had a huge parcel delivered yesterday and absolutely loved the contents as soon as I saw him.

Meet Herbert, a 23" bear named after my Paternal Grandfather whom I never met.  Grandad French left the army with shrapnel war wounds from WW1. 
This old boy has many 'wounds' of his own and I will consider it an honour to restore him and hopefully give him many more years in a new home.
For a start there is this patched area around his leg joint.  It has been patched very badly with a piece of sheepskin!  I am not sure that it will need a patch once the leg has been re-attached correctly.
Then there is problems with his arms.  The joints are fine, but the wood wool filling has settled making it look as if he has a broken arm, and the joint is showing at the top seam.

His paw pads have been replaced/covered, quite neatly, but stitched on the outside with a very dark brown material.  I am planning to give him new pads in a slightly lighter ultrasuede.  I will wait to see how damaged his original foot pads are once I get the covering material off. 

His head has numerous darns, especially around his nose.  These will be staying as they are quite neatly sewn, and in my opinion it will do more harm than good if I unpick them.  They are part of his history and give him character.  His nose and mouth appear to be original.

For some reason he has holes in the back of his ears that will need closing. 
I may find other problems as I go through the restoration process, but as long as I can make him strong enough to last many more years, I will be happy.
Unfortunately he has had to have the obligatory few days in the freezer that all of the old timers get when they arrive.  This (hopefully) will get rid of any nasties that may be lurking in the wood wool or mohair.  
When he comes out of quarantine I will post on here as I go along, to show the work in progress.  In the meantime, my 12" Pud Bears Panda appears to like having a big brother to look up to.
I believe him to be a 1930's - 1940's Chiltern bear.

1 comment:

  1. Oooh - he's lovely! Good luck with him. I always meant to ask you, when I tried restuffing an old bear, I opened him up and found strings leading from his limb joints to the back of his neck. Have you found these, and do you know what they're for?