When Tammy was told she had won, she had this to say...
"Oh my WORD!!! I am shocked speechless!!!!
This piece was made late this summer as I worked off some of my anxiety over my
father, who was very very ill at the time. The thought of the real possibility
of losing him had made me remember some of my many happy childhood moments with
him, and one in particular was of how all of us kids would give him a kiss
before going upstairs for the night. Because it was the end of the day, his
'whiskers' were just starting to get scratchy, and I will always remember Dad's
Kiss as that scratchy but loving embrace that ended each day so securely for us.
The cub in this piece is half-turning his head away and struggling to get free
of the embrace, but clearly enjoying the attention, as his smile can attest.
Each of the bears in this piece is slightly 'rounder' - less angular - than my
usual realistic polar bears, but, I thought, captured that softer feel that I
wanted to express.
The wool is just a cormo skin over whatever base wool I had handy. The eyes are
tiny sub-millimeter handmade glass on a wire. The features are shaded and the
noses and mouths embroidered.
I am so happy that those other two won! Those are two of the ones I voted for!!
They are great!!!"
Stephanie's Response to winning...
"Oh how neat, That is such great news! Hmmm..... well, I used acrylic threads and my favorite size 10 steel crochet hook to create Nadia. My memory is a little fuzzy because she was 'born' quite a while ago, but I remember getting the idea for the bunny slippers one Saturday afternoon and then making two bears that wore them~ a boy bear and a girl bear. Nadia went to live with one of my loyal collectors here in the US and the boy went to live with another of my loyal collectors in Paris, France. As for inspiration~lately I have been finding it in the thousands of children's books that my son has me read to him over, and over, and over again. Children's books always have such colorful, innocent, & whimsical characters.. qualities that I like to think my bears & friends also posess. "