Brazilian Embroidery Embellished Bear

Rita Goff 2005

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Brazilian Embroidery done by Rita Goff is shown here before the bear was assembled.

      Rita stitched patterns for the inside and outside of the bear's arms and legs. The bear is so tiny the stitching on the inside of arms and legs is not easily visible so we elected the save the 4 pieces of stitching below for other projects. 

So Susie Spins Bear

This little bear was designed and made by Cynthia Allen Farabee for the beautiful hand spun and hand woven Moh-Bear fabric available through Spare Bear Parts. The original bear (pictured below) was on display at the 1998 International Quilt Show, Houston Texas and then visited shows throughout the United States. Cynthia was a partner in Bluebonnet Crafters and wanted her bear patterns shared. Since her death Bluebonnet Crafters still shares her patterns as she wished. The finished bear is about 5 1/2" tall and can be made of solid fabric for embroidery or light weight crazy quilted fabrics in addition to the traditional bear fabrics.

One quarter yard fabric
6 mm glass eyes
Polyester Fiberfil
DMC pearl cotton # 5 in pink for the nose
One quarter yard Muslin
One quarter yard Heat 'n Bond
Button/Carpet thread (matching)
Sewing needle (both hand and machine)
Long needle (doll needle)
Sewing machine
Marking pen
Balloon (needle grabber aid)
Chopsticks (as stuffing aid)
Fray Check if needed for raveling
Lightweight cardboard


Read all instructions through before beginning.

This pattern is simple without gussets or paw pads.

Pattern is a template, no seam allowances are included. Trace pattern pieces onto light cardboard. Transfer pattern pieces to wrong side of fabric folded right sides together. This is the seam line. Be sure to follow the nap. On all body pieces nap runs down. On the ears only, nap runs up. Mark openings.

Cut out all pieces using 1/4" seam allowance. Bear can be machine sewn or hand sewn. If hand sewn use double thread and back stitch. Seam allowances are trimmed before turning.

Baste seams of each body part first to prevent shifting as you sew. Sew completely around each piece leaving the opening as marked. Lock stitch at beginning and end of each seam. Sew two ear pieces right sides together around the curved edge (repeat for second ear).

Clip and trim all seams. Turn each piece. Ears are not stuffed so use your chopsticks to smooth the seams inside the ear.

Stuff all body parts firmly using polyester Fiberfil. Close each opening (head must be jointed at neck before the neck is closed, see jointing below) with a ladder stitch using double thread or carpet thread. Embroider nose and mouth with pearl cotton using a satin stitch for the nose. Form an upside down "Y" for the mouth using three single long stitches or back stitches. Attach eyes (see picture for positioning)

Leaving a long tail enter the inner left arm exiting the arm approximately 1/2" from the top of the curve. Using your needle jiggle to find the exit hole and insert needle going through the arm, through the entire body, through the right arm to the outside. Again jiggle to locate the original exit hole and repeat back through the body and tie off the thread under the left arm (may be necessary to repeat complete step a second time to get a firm joint). Entering and exiting the outside of the arm through the same hole gives you a strong joint by catching on the stuffing but does not dimple the outside of the arm. Repeat same procedure for legs.

To joint the head begin with your long thread tail enter the opening in the back go up and exit at the neck enter the bottom of the head and making a small stitch exit the head. Enter the same hole in the neck exiting at the opening in the back (may be necessary to repeat this step a second time for strength). Tie off thread ends, clip and ladder stitch opening closed.

Whip stitch the raw edges of each ear and attach the ears to the head using a ladder stitch with double thread positioning as in the picture.

***We made a couple of changes in our bear. The black eyes were too stark with the pastel stitching so we used a blue faceted bead for some sparkle. His ears were lined in a pale pink cotton blend matching the body material. The nose was stitched in a 100% silk embroidery thread in variegated pink.

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