Friday, November 2, 2012

The Holly and the Ivy

We have only just turned the calendar page to November, but Christmas songs have been playing in my head for weeks! The each 85 artists participating in the Teddies Worldwide Christmas Treasures online show was asked to create a bear to represent a Christmas carol or song. As I pondered my choice, my head was a virtual juke box of holiday tunes. I finally decided on "The Holly and the Ivy" There are so many Christmas songs I love for so many different reasons, but this is one of my favorites. I have a CD by pianist George Winston called "December" which includes the first version I heard of this song. It is this particular instrumental version that is my favorite, and the CD is perhaps one of my favorite albums ever! Each time I listen to it, a wave of warm emotions crashes over me, and while it brings happy memories, I often find my vision blurred with tears. What a wonderful gift George Winston has to be able to move someone like that with his music!

I also knew I wanted to keep my assessories simple because the bear I created has some nice detailing on her own. At 15", she is the smallest bear I have created with my detailed paw pads, although I realize she is still large by many people's standards.  Here are Holly's paws and feet.

Applique trapunto paw pads before airbrush shading!

In an effort to create a simple assessory that was also unique, I decided to make her sprig of holly out of sculpted leather. I always get the biggest charge out of trying something new--especially when it turns out nicely. I was so pleased with these!

A bit of the scrap I started with, plus some finished leaves.

First I cut out the leaves from a pattern I made. The I wet them and scored the
veins and shaped them with my hands.

I dried them on a low temperature in the oven . I experimented with
painting white on the edges, but didn't care for it. Holly looks pleased!

And here is Holly, all ready for her Christmas Treasures preview debut! The preview is open now! Please visit to see Holly and 84 other lovely Christmas Carol themed bears! Be sure to vote for your favoites in both catagories! Hope to see you at the show November 16-18


Kays Kids said...

Tami, your Holly Bear is a dream. I love her paws and toes so much. You are such an inspiration to me.

Joanne@ Desertmountainbear said...

I agree with Kay, totally inspiring. I am looking forward to your paw pad demonstration at the Philly show. In my humble opinion you are the best.

Tami Eveslage said...

Thank you very much Kay and Joanne! Joanne, I am so happy to hear you are going and very excited to know I will have at least one person in attendance at my presentation! I actually took photos of my process on this bear for my presentation. It takes too long to do an actual demonstration so I am putting together a slide show.

Kayzy said...

Holly and her ivy are just gorgeous, Tami.
Hugs from Kayzy