Friday, July 2, 2010

Big Nosed Antique American Bear

My most recent antique teddy acquisition is this 14 inch 1908 American bear, maker unknown. He's got a fabulous face, with low set ears and a huge nose that give him a cute, comical appearance (even with a little bit of his nose missing).

 He came to me from one of my favorite dealers in England, dressed as shown. This is, of course, a generalization, but I've found that British teddy bear collectors seem to favor dressing and accessorizing their bears, while their American counterparts tend to prefer their teddies to be...well...bare. (Pun intended.) Almost every antique bear I've acquired from England has come dressed, often in clothes hand knit just for them. The difficult thing for me is deciding whether to leave them that way. I'm stumped with this one, because he looks rather charming in his little outfit, and it's clear that he's worn it for a long time. But his blond mohair is in great shape, and it seems a shame to hide it, and his spectacular, early American style conformation, underneath all those clothes...


  1. I have to admit, I like the clothes. I think they accentuate his cuteness. By the way, how do you decide if a bear is male or female? I notice that you refer to some as she and others as he. Anyway, this one is so cute, you just want to kiss his big nose. Someone else obviously felt that way too.

  2. I'm afraid that's a rather delicate topic that I'm not comfortable discussing in such a public forum. Plus, it would embarrass the bears...

  3. Too funny Tracy, but I'm impressed with your consideration of the bears' feelings LOL

    I do like the clothes but I also think they hide the form of the bear and detract from his 'true self' because they dictate his (her??) personality.

  4. Oh my...I love this bear! You are so right on with your comments of dressed and non dressed bears. I love them in their bare splendor, but some just find the perfect outfit for them. I tend to leave them dressed for a time, then let them 'run free' for awhile. But they always seem to end up with their original outfits.

  5. Did you ever figure out who this bear is? I have one very similar! Have asked several people but nobody knows! Mine has cardboard inserts in his feet like an Aetna bear would have. :o)

    1. Hi there, no, I haven't identified him yet, other than as a very old American ted. I've since seen another exactly like him for sale, but he was unknown too. Still, he's a great bear!