Monday, 30 November 2009

Free 1925 Soggibottom Teddy Bear Pattern. How to fit Cotter Pins and Safety Joints

It's really great to receive so many email's about the 1925 Ted Pattern.
To everyone, THANK YOU, you are very welcome.
It's amazing it's so popular in Russia.
It would be great to see your creations.

Most of my mail repeats itself .. How do cotter pins work ?

If you haven't a clue, I will try to explain. (oh muddy waters....)

Above you will see various sizes of cotter pins, and washers and disks.
Looking at some other sites and books I can understand how sometimes it seems complicated....IT IS A MYTH...... you need to find the right size disk to fit the top of your arm or leg to start with. The disk should fill as much space as it will allow at the upper part of the limb. If your making a bear, you will need 5 sets of joints. One for the head, two for the arms and two for the legs. Re reading this I find I repeat myself, but bear with me.

The 1925 pattern bear that I made... (oh here he is) ....
has cotter pin joints...
They are fine, great, and used by many bear artists and makers but not to be used unless they are intended to be made for an adult. NOT TO BE USED FOR A CHILD'S BEAR.

They have metal and small parts..... not the kind of "stuff", anyone in their right mind would want to pass to a child. The amount of metal I have found when restoring old bears is unbelievable to think they were given to children. When restoring my own bear I found SHARP METAL. I had him for my first Christmas....the reason why I am going to explain how to use SAFETY JOINTS first.

Above are two sets of joints, different sizes, you will need 5 sets to joint a bear.
4 sets of the same size for arms and legs and possibly a slightly larger joint for teds head.

For each joint you should have, a pegged disk, a plastic washer and one lock washer.

Insert the pegged disk into ted's arm, through the material (I use an awl to help me here).
Then it needs to go through the material where you are going to put the arm on the body.

Place a plastic washer over the end of the pegged disk (you are now working inside the teds body). Then place a lock washer (the small one) over the plastic washer AND PUSH HARD until it clicks into place. I tend to click right down here a few times until it won't click anymore.***
DONE.... One safety joint in place.


Cotter pins are slightly different, but don't let the small bits put you off. Its a bit like a sandwich.
The rounded end of the cotter pin, (the long metal bit) goes into a washer, then a disk. Now position it inside ted's arm where you are going to place his joint. Pass the cotter pin through the material*. Out the other side so it's now on the out side of ted's arm. Then pass the cotter pin through the material into ted's body. You are now working inside ted's body.

With me so far?
Now you add another disk then another metal washer.
This is the interesting bit.
The ends of the cotter pin need to be turned into a crook shape. The pin halves should be separated and curled down tightly onto the washer.
You can use a small pair of pliers or a cotter key.
Another joint........ DONE.....

That's about it really...although there are other joints to fix limbs to bears....
Pop rivet joints, Epoxy lock nut joints, setscrew joints, string joints and swivel tilt things for heads.

***One thing I didn't mention about the safety joints, once the lock washer is on, it is will ruin the joint trying to remove it. Not that you can't but you will have to use a new lock washer.
* I tend to use a fabric fray stopper around the point I want to place the joint on the fabric, on both safety joints and cotter pin joints. Have a practise always I'll always be pleased to help.

As for the 1925 bear.....Here he is with the cannonball beside the fire place. He's starting on a long journey in the morning. He's going somewhere cold, the reason why I gave him a hat and something warm to wear.
As always I hate to see them go...... I am sure we will see him again somewhere..................... although not with the cannon ball....far too heavy for the post.

Friday, 27 November 2009

Shelf Life

I'm busy making bears.

I have so many odd bits of mohair hanging around from larger bruins that I'm getting tougher on myself to use up the left overs.

The two little guys here are made from mohair that normally I would dump into my scrap box.

I keep every bit of mohair that's left over because.....I never know when I might need it!!!!!

SQUIRREL..... time for a clear out, with luck I'll be able to get into the cupboard under the stairs again. If you notice the clock above the fire has the same time on it since it was on here before. It probably has as we tend to forget to wind it up.....just in case anyone notices.........

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Christmas Cookie Recipe


After the tea posts this week and all the email's about tea some bright spark............

I know who you are!

Has sent this.......................

I've adapted it slightly, but you get the gist....enjoy.......

Christmas Cookie Recipe

1 cup of water
I tsp baking soda
1 cup of sugar
1 tsp salt
1 cup of brown sugar
4 large eggs
1 cup of nuts
2 cups of dried fruit
1 bottle of Tequila

Sample the Tequila to check quality.
Take a large bowl, check the Tequila again to be sure it is of the highest quality
Pour one level cup over margarita, mix and drink.
Turn on the electric mixer. Beat one cup of butter in a large fluffy bowl.
Add one peastoon of sugar.
Beat again. At this point it's best to make sure the Tequila is still ok.
Try another drink just in case.
Turn off the mixerer thingy.
Break 2 leggs and add to the bowl and chuck in the cup of fried druit.
Pick the flippin fruit off the floor.
Mix on the turner.
If the fried druit gets stuck in the beaters just pry it loose with a drewscriver.
Sample the Tequila again to check for tonsisticity.
Next, sift two cups of salt, or something.
Check the Tequila.
Bow shift the lemon juice and strain your nuts.
Add one table.
Add a spoon of sugar, or somefink. whatever you can find.
Greash the oven.
Turn the cake tin 360 degrees and try not to fall over.
Don't forget to beat off the turner.
Finally, throw the bowl through the window,
finish the Tequila and make sure to put the stove in the dishdasher.

If you've read something like it before, sorry................
It made me laugh........ I don't drink Tequila, am I missing something here?
Thanks Sally !

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Biscuits Bandit

Another visit to the farm shop.
Bessie saw our car from the farm gate and came to greet us.
Our car is the one that has a number plate that says M.U.G.
We haven't seen her for a while, she is a working lady, last week she was out with her boss.

How could you not make a fuss of her and give her a cookie?
Amie never misses a few from her stash in the car.

Frank is slightly better.
Thanks to all who have sent him your best wishes.

He is walking on his bad leg and isn't limping so badly. To get him to take his medication is getting harder.
He is fed up of chicken and now on to fish (only the best stuff).
Any other suggestions to give him his medicine would be welcome.
Apart from holding open his mouth and pouring it in...THAT DOES NOT WORK......unless you want your hand back!

Monday, 23 November 2009

Too wet for Ducks

We can't say how sorry we feel for the rest of the country that have been flooded this weekend.

This is the stream that passes Soggibottom
Not a trickle of softy flowing water at the moment.
Neither is it the torrent of water that we have seen in past storms.
The level flowing past is acceptable unlike other times when you can't see the bank properly.
Or when the water has come rageing around the corner and has no where to go but inside the cottage.

We are always watchful of the water levels outside. It becomes habit forming checking the stream during bad weather especially at high tide or Spring tides.

Saturday, 21 November 2009

Little wooden doll

The wooden doll above was sent to the cottage last year, from Michele. We both have the same name spelt the same way. One lives on one side of a the pond and one lives the other. One is a talented isn't!!!! No guessing which one here......O.K. I'm not..........

The doll arrived slightly too late to go onto our Christmas tree last year.
Instead she has been roaming around the cottage going from room to room in different locations. This little wooden doll has made me smile for months. Soon be time for her to do her stuff and sit on the Christmas tree.

I mentioned a teapot a couple of posts ago, o.k. not the one above, but for some strange reason, tea and teapots have been constantly in email's this week........ maybe we shouldn't mention the tea cozy! (I really did need one).

Friday, 20 November 2009

Paws for thought

Isn't friendship great............

There's a lot of this paw malarkey that goes on around the cottage with Amie and the soggibottom feline inhabitants........

Time to raid the soap shop in Exeter

You must think we are an awfully dirty lot down here as I keep mentioning the fact that we visit the Lush soap shop in Exeter so much.

This is our Christmas visit and time to stock up. I used my winnings from Purplecat's blog. Me, who never wins a thing. I was really pleased to have won this as I love Purplecat's art work.

Just goes to show you if your not in it you can't win it..............

I also follow another Giving blog....hope you like this one too, I'm sure you will. All the information about giveaways that you can possibly want.

Here is the link SewCalGal's Thanks - Giveaway.....


Thursday, 19 November 2009

No one takes things seriously around here

Except maybe Mew, bird watching is serious stuff...

It's starting to become "the done thing".........
any visitor who hasn't been here for a while has their photo taken by the fire.

Great to see old friends Sam and Sally.................. Loved my flowers, thank you x x x
As you see they don't take things too seriously either.........

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

Bodmin Moor in November

It was bleak going over Bodmin Moor this morning.

It doesn't take us long to get from South Devon over to Perranpoth in Cornwall.

I just hate the journey in the Winter.

The horses are tough guys.
Better at coping with the moor and hardier than I will ever be.
Mind you I didn't have to walk.

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Spaced out tea pot and cover

We have been saving this packet of tea "for occasions" - as you do....... It came from our very good friends the Beesley's in Michigan.

After the storms that have hit the South West and the whole of England last weekend we ventured out into our garden to view the damage. I can't believe we escaped intact. Out came the "tea" - as it was afternoon, it had to be tea. Ah... the special one

Yes, we have a tea pot, it's packed up somewhere in the cottage. It was unpacked when we moved in then packed up again when we were flooded and we decided that only the things that were used regularly could go into the kitchen. The old teapot was 1930's one.... as usual, I know it is around, somewhere....... I brought a really expensive new teapot from the supermarket (if you go into Asda you too can have a teapot for £3.50) then I thought it was missing something.... you've guessed it..... here it is..... the tea cosy.

All the most fantastic art and crafts on blogs and I display a tea cosy.


This is an apple, from our tree. The last survivor of the Summer. The reason for celebration.

The apple that survived the storm. The one we missed.

Only one thing to do, cut in half and..........

we ate half each. The left of your screen is my bit I might add, I didn't leave much.

I know this is a silly posting. This afternoon I had an email from a lady called Mary Anna, thanking me for the rag doll pattern I put on here (seems like ages ago). Wow, all the hits the doll and bear and bee box get and Mary Anna email comes out of the blue from someone I don't know.

How many times have I hit ghoul (sorry, Google) trying to find something, and it comes up that I should pay for the privilege of a pattern.

So for all the darlings out there who charge,
one word....R.A.T.S....I have, very sorry had to withdraw from following a blog tonight who charge. Be more giving.... you will feel better for it!
I really wish people would have a more giving nature. Mary Anna and everyone else who has used the are very welcome.

Thank you too for every one who has emailed or left a comment about Frank.
He might be macho, but he is the biggest wimp you will ever come across. WE LOVE HIM, even his psychotic tendencies.
Frank is sleeping off his second dose of medication.... Mice are safe tonight.

If you really want the teapot cozy pattern let me know, and I'll blog it.

Monday, 16 November 2009

Things to do when there is a storm

It's taken me ages to knit this.......

I'm not the world's greatest knitter, but a promise is a promise and I have promised I would knit this for someone.

My friend Jan gave me the pattern, now she knows I've used it...... Hi Jan x x x

Free cat calorie counter.

A few hours on from the last posting and Frank is none the worse for his adventure to the vet.

He is good and a gentleman when he is there.
All round large fluffy kitten in fact.
It's the ten minute car trip that he's not too keen on.

Nothing broken, maybe a torn ligament in his foot. Medication for a week.
It hurt us more than Frank. We were in there less than 4 minutes.
My joke of soon having to get a mortgage to pay the vet went down like a lead balloon at the reception desk..............

The problem being he is too big and too old now to go jumping from high fences.
He has a cat flap he could use but that's not macho.

If you want your cat to stay healthy it might help to follow a good exercise routine.

Jumping onto the living room couch must be worth 3 calories
Jumping up on top of a wardrobe (two tries) 10 calories
Chasing after a bird 250 calories
Chasing after a dog 100 calories
Being chased by a dog 10 calories
Rearranging pillows 100 calories
Moving from one side of the bed to the other 350 calories
Tail twitching 3 calories
Being shoved off a chair 3 calories
Finger painting with a tin of paint 110 calories
Responding to a call (first) 0 calories
Responding to a call (second) 0 calories
Responding to call (third) 0 calories
Taking a walk outside with the boss 20 calories
Taking a walk outside alone 2,500 calories

There is a bright side to this story, at least the birds will be safer for a while and the mouse population should have doubled by the time Frank gets back into the swing of things.

If your cat won't fit into the bath you know it's a large cat.

I have heard that if your cat won't fit into the average size kitchen bowl, then it might, just might be slightly large. If it doesn't fit into the average size bath than it really needs to go on a diet.

It would take a better person than me to try and get Frank into a bowl (with or without water) let alone a bath ~(with or without water).

He isn't over weight although he is a very large cat.
At 12 and a half probably just passing his prime (unless you know differently).

Slightly too heavy to go jumping fences with his old skill and grace. The reason why he is limping.
Trip to the vet is imminent Frank...... an hour away and the clock is ticking.

I know he will quite happily go into the basket. The car journey is a trial of yells. Wish us luck!
Why do they always hurt themselves at the weekend?

Friday, 13 November 2009

Lazy Angels, black cats and Friday 13th.

I made these lazy Angels a while ago.
It's Friday the 13 th, might be a good idea to give them a good prod and wake them up.

Druids believed trees were the home to gods and sprites that protected the forests.
By knocking once on a tree and making a wish, it was thought the sprites would grant the wish.

Does that include an oak ship timber over the fireplace?

Friday the 13th and black cats ( in this instance it's Fluff's).
Mew is at the top of the post, forever on watch.

If it were true............ a black cat walks towards you, you'll have good luck I would be calling Fluffs and Frank all day...... (I do call Frank all day) .........
If they walk away from you, they take luck with them
(In Franks case he walks away unless you have something interesting enough for him to eat).

No good just hanging around there.

All these lazy Angels have homes by the way.

Thursday, 12 November 2009

Felting with a rolling pin

This is something I started way back in the days when the sun shone and the wool dried quickly outside. Since the weather changed this project was put on hold and resides in the black hole under the stairs. All rolled up and ready to go........ when I have the time to finish it.

I have been asked to display the Soggibottom bear more often on the blog.
You will find him at the right hand side, top of the page.

When he changes his clothes, I will change his picture.

No more pulling on wellies and traipsing down to the cottage in the wet weather to peer in the window at him. You can see what he's wearing day by day and keep dry.

It will also save you a trip down to Devon.

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

Torquay Museum and Kents Cavern

We still have butterflies in the garden, as well as a Sparrow Hawk that landed on our bird table this morning. I would love to have taken a picture of him for you but he was quick. Not as quick as the sparrows that scattered, and chirped away at him as they all hid in the bushes.

We chose the easy option for a walk and went to our local Museum this morning.

Agatha Christie grew up and based some of her books on places around Torquay.
There is a whole room dedicated to her in the museum.

I'm not a great Agatha Christie fan, although we once met Poirot (David Suchet) at a wedding we were invited to a few years ago. I thought the Agatha Christie display was well thought out and loads of old photo's to look at. No photography aloud, other wise I would have shown you.

As usual anything with a bear draws me like a magnet.
They have opened excavations on Kents Cavern in Torquay, finds are still coming out of the cave. I love history on my doorstep.

The museum's idea of a typical Devon kitchen, before anyone asks, what ever it is hanging up by the fire place, they aren't mine. My kitchen does not look like this although maybe similar once.

Why do museums always have their own Egyptian mummy?

Are we museum crusties? Probably....... Exeter museum has been closed for ages. When it re- opens it is next on our list.

Monday, 9 November 2009

Clean up Cornwall from Pastys campaign

Well it could be, if it ever happened this little guy would have the top dog at cleaning up Cornish pasties award.

Also chips , maybe the odd bit of fish......

In fact anything he could borrow from your lunch.
The couple sitting here were another pair that were mugged.

Do you know this dog?


If you do and you wonder why he is putting on weight and why he disappears every lunch time, you will find him near the quay in Polperro.
After doing his rounds of visitors you might catch him strolling up the street, quite full with his chubby belly wobbling making his way home. Probably to sleep it all off.

We watched him for ages going from visitor to visitor...and yes....we couldn't resist feeding him either.. I noticed he didn't follow us on our steep walk......although we think it might have been better for him than hanging around the quay.

Cute isn't he... little weasel, pirate and bandit.

Saturday, 7 November 2009

Friday, 6 November 2009

Things you never knew about a Christmas Pudding

It's only around the corner....... as always I won't be hurried. If I take my time too much Christmas will have passed and Easter will be a few weeks away.....

I cheated and brought a Christmas pudding. It's not that I haven't made them before, I always used to make them. Brought to the Christmas table swimming in brandy, flames dancing all around the plate. Last year we brought one from Bulleigh Farm shop and wow.....much better than my burnt Brandy offerings.

That's right, the Farm where we buy our eggs and Bessie the farm's sheepdog who will only let us out of the car after she has had cookies.

Good tip:- always have a pocket of cookies when visiting a farm.

Back to the humble Plum/Christmas pudding.....

Older pictures of Christmas puddings tend to show them as large footballs, they were tied up in a cloth or a bag and then boiled on wash day. (Not in my new washing machine they aren't). It seems earlier puddings were long and round and shaped like thick sausages. They consisted of chopped up meat, suet, oatmeal and spices. Cooked in the scalded intestines of a sheep or pig. Served hot at the beginning of a meal as the first course.........have I put you off yet?

Bulleigh Farm are displaying their Christmas cakes next week. BE QUICK if you want one as they aren't around for long. Don't forget your pocket full of Bessie's cookies.

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Houses of Parliament Rifle Range

It's November the 5th. How could we not mention something about fireworks.

I thought this might interest you as, at the moment British Members of Parliament are under such scrutiny.

The Palace of Westminster (Houses of Parliament) is a vast complex of nearly 1,200 rooms.

It includes The House of Commons, The House of Lords, Westminster Hall and BIG BEN.

Almost a self-contained village, all the facilities that Members of Parliament and Lords could need, maybe they never have to venture out into the real world.

According to the 2006 House of Lords staff handbook, all persons permanently employed at the Palace of Westminster are entitled to join the Sports and Social Club. A bar with hot and cold snacks, darts and a 0.22 rifle range.

It is said that enquiries from the public about the rifle range are met with a dignified silence.........

In 1994 they voted to keep the rifle range rather than open a creche..... I know the facts here might be a few years old.............makes you think about GUY FAWKES though..........

The pictures and video above have absolutely nothing to do with Guy Fawkes or the Houses of Parliament. We were on the beach this morning. Slightly windy. Where would we sooner be London or Devon?
Need you ask?