How to start collecting teddy bears

How to start collecting teddy bears

Any collection (with Latin collectio – collection) begins with a passionate desire to possess as many adorable items as possible, united by a certain attribute.

In the case of Teddy’s bears, the future collector has a lot of questions, the most important of which is “the purpose for which the collection is to be collected”. There may be several answers, but the most important ones are the following:

For the soul.

In this case, buy pretty bears that you like, without taking into account the company and the country of manufacturer, authorship, size, style, age, etc. Such a collection has no material value, but delivers a lot of aesthetic pleasure to the owner.

As a family heirloom.

It’s always nice when the hobby is continued in future generations. It is both a memory of oneself and an opportunity to continue to replenish the collection with new teddy bears. Who knows, there may be rare specimens in it, which are highly valued among teddists. In addition, years later, the time will come when the toys will become rarity.

To invest money.

Creating a valuable antique collection requires a deep knowledge of all the intricacies of this difficult task and serious monetary investments. However, if you do everything correctly (from search and purchase to storage), over time, the value of Teddy bears will increase in times.

Teddy bear toys are like antiques.

Before you begin to collect your own collection with the prospect of enrolling toys in the status of antique, you must choose a narrow direction. Here you should give detailed explanations:

  • If you collect teddy bears from one manufacturer or one release time, one style or one size – the total cost of such a collection will not be as high as you would like it to be;
  • If you add a second attribute, the chances of the toys being highly appreciated in terms of antiques and finances will increase significantly. Examples are a combination of style and size, country of manufacture and time, etc.

If you want to invest a lot of money in the acquisition of collectibles, it is worth visiting a number of exhibitions of one or more authors, to study the information on specialized websites, to read the author’s blogs.

It is also worth setting the bar in terms of purchasing the number of interesting copies per year. Usually it is 2-3 Teddy toys per year. Thus, the collector will be able to admire each item for a long time, but it will not bore him thanks to the “hunt” for a new toy.

What Teddy Bears Value: Explanations by Specialists

The value of Teddy’s soft toys is determined by a number of criteria. It is very important to know about them and take them into account when buying each new exhibit when creating an expensive collection.

Age of the product and fame of the company or author-teddist

The older and more famous the firm that released the toy, or the more famous the author, the higher it is valued. The category of the most expensive products includes those that were produced closer to the beginning of the teddy bear. An example is Teddy from Steiff 1902-1910. Thus, the 1905 bear (Teddy Girl) was sold at Christie’s auction for 110 thousand pounds sterling.

The story of a soft toy and its safety

In that case, there’s got to be an unusual story to tell with Teddy Bear. Perhaps the teddy was in the possession of one of the famous people, not necessarily collectors. The safety of the product is also important here. An example is manager Paul Greenwood and his collection, which he collected for 15 years. Its most expensive specimen is the Harlequin bear with a starting price of 80 thousand pounds sterling.

Number of copies and their originality

As a rule, authors with promoted names create bears in a single copy, which makes them unique. As for the manufacturers, they sometimes produce toys in limited editions. For example, the company Steiff for its 100th anniversary made a small batch of bears at a price of 70-80 thousand dllars per copy. Wheelers liked these toys with spouts of gold and sapphire peepholes, so they were quickly bought.

Determining the age of the teddy bear: expert help

Today, the range of materials for Teddy bears is huge. And teddy bear craftsmanship deserves high praise. They can create an almost indistinguishable copy of bears in retro or cake style. However, the cost of such products will be many times cheaper than their originals.

Therefore, it is worth asking for help from Teddy Bear experts. They will be able to examine the padding, check the presence of the brand name, etc. Author’s bears should have a passport with a detailed description of all data on this toy.

Teddy bear shopping places

Exhibitions are considered to be the ideal place to purchase your adoration. They are used to carefully examine the product and talk to the author. Another option is art salons. However, in this case, you will have to pay 30-50% more. This is a mark-up of the salon.

In the case of online shopping, you should be extremely careful, trust only trusted authors or manufacturers. Otherwise, there is a risk of getting a low-quality product. For antique bears with a history is better to go to the auctions of “Christie” and “Sotheby’s”, of course, if there is such an opportunity.