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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Dollhouse Collection New Releases for January 2012

Pictured above are some of my new Dollhouse releases.  The `Mouse Ballerina` measures 1 and 1/8 inches or 3cms.  She has fully jointed head, arms and legs and has a little tutu skirt and a tiny pink ribbon adorning her head.  I love all the dollhouse pieces but the mice are always my favorite because they are so small and delicate. 

Each dollhouse piece comes in a tiny calico bag with a tag stating edition number and size.  

Also pictured are `Little Violet bear` who is also fully jointed and sports a little pink ribbon.  He measures 1.25 inches or 3.5cms.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Announcing `Spring Training Camp` for Binkers

I have decided that there is to be a `Spring Training Camp` for Binker`s.  I will be releasing all the information in the `Doodle Club Newsletter` going out in January.  If you need further information or would like to put your `Binker`s` name down for the event.  Please email me.  Places are limited.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

A letter from Camp Binker to home

Please ignore Binker`s spelling mistakes and lack of sentence construction - he was very excited when he wrote it.

6th October 2005

Dear Home,

Sorry I haven’t written sooner but Deb has been waiting for all the Binker`s to arrive.  We are almost all here now so, since it is raining this morning, we are all sitting down to write letters home.  Deb is helping with the spelling.

Everyone is very friendly here. 

Over the weekend we all settled in.  Deb said we were probably all a bit tired from our journey and all the excitement of coming on such a long trip.   None of us got lost and one little bear came all the way from Australia.  His Mum told him `not to get so excited that he missed his stop`.  He talks with a different accent to the rest of us, but he`s cool and has great jokes.  He will keep calling everyone `Tucker`. 

I am in a dorm with six other Binkers.  A couple of them snore really loudly and Deb says that we would not find it a problem `if` we didn’t chat till all hours.  The secret is to be the first one asleep.  She says, she learned that at boarding school.

We had to learn a few drills for safety reasons.  We have a `beach drill` for when we go swimming, a `boat drill` for when we go boating and a `fire drill` for when we go firing!!  

Lynne, Angela and Deb are very nice.  They aren`t really strict at all but they do seem to suffer from stress when it comes to worrying about us `Binkers`.  Lynne said we were giving her a headache the other day.  It has rained a bit this week and when that happens we go into the office to `help` them.   Angela has been packing up the new bears for the autumn and we have had a look and met them all.  The `Halloween` collection is `cool` and we have all had a go at riding `Santa in Florida`s flamingo`.  We have also been pulling each other round on `Plum`s` sleigh but we got told off for that because we were going so fast and turning such tight circles that `Binkers`
were flying off in all directions.  Deb said it was becoming a real challenge to get all us Binkers home without injury. 

We have gone to Venice Beach a couple of days.  It is a nice time to visit since it isn’t really busy yet and we had plenty of room to run and play.  Deb had lots of beach games and we played beach `cricket`, which is a variation of an English game.   The ball was a little bit too hard for most the Binker`s so we got Deb`s dogs to retrieve the balls after we had hit it.  `Sweepy` is very good at bringing the ball back for the bowler to throw again BUT `Daisy` and `Chopper` kept running off with it.  So in the end we abandoned the game of cricket for `Chase the Dog`.  The dogs won.

Last night we were going to have  a big Camp Fire but it got rained out so we are hoping to have it tonight.  The entertainment is being provided by all the `Halloween `Bears.  `Spells` says she is going to make sure that she `frightens the living daylights out of us!`.  Deb says, it’s a silly expression and she always wondered what the `living daylights` were when she was young.  Anyway, Charlie and Sam (Deb`s sons) said they have some great ghost stories and Richard, Deb`s husband is bound to find some way to get involved.  I think Deb was just planning on us singing some camp fire songs.

The weather has been quite wet this week.  So for the last couple of days we have indoor activities.  This morning Deb made sure we all had a rain cape and insisted that we were all going out for a `Treasure Hunt` since she couldn’t stand any more squabbles in the house and we all needed some exercise.  We have been playing, `Snakes and Ladders`, cards and Bingo.  We have also been polishing up our individual poetry readings ready for a special show next week.  Some of the Binker`s are planning on singing as well and one Binker is doing a piano recital except his stool has broken but Deb says she can find him another one.

We did discuss doing a play but Deb says that last camp she had so much trouble trying to organize a Camp play.  Being as there is a shortage of girls at camp we have to call on all the girls in Deb`s line.  Apparently, the Dappled Dragons get hugely out of control being such Prima Donna`s, so much so that Deb cancelled the  last  event to avoid hurt feelings, not to mention a fight.

Anyway, the sun has come out so we are all going out on a boat.  Charlie has a large tire and he can tow it behind the boat at great speed with us clinging on.  Have to hurry before Deb finds out.

Much love Binker

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Binker Camp an event for wayward teddy bears

One of my earliest club bears was `Binker` a 3.75 inch mohair bear wearing a green jacket and hat.  He was a particularly troublesome chap, well meaning but easily bored.  After numerous phone calls from owners who were having particular difficulties with his behaviour I decided to recall all `Binkers` back to my house to work on their character skills.  I devised a `Binker Camp`.

Three hundred `Binkers` were returned, from seven different countries for a summer of fun, learning and development.   Here they are pictured at flag raising.  This was taken the day after they arrived but by the end of camp they were all standing still and in line during the event because they learned the importance of showing respect to the flags.

When they arrived their loving owners had sent them with their favorite books and toys; some had cell phones; money to call home; extra clothing; medications;  Clearly part of the problem with these bears was that they were over indulged at home but a summer at mine was clearly what they needed to get them back in shape.  I had a number of phone calls from concerned owners but they were all reassured.   All `Binkers` were required to write home on  Sundays and I will be posting up a copy of one of the Binker`s letters tomorrow.  A few were homesick but I kept them so busy with activities that they soon got over that.

We worked on character development and they each had their own goals of what they wanted to achieve during Camp.  We had special sports events where they could show their skills at soccer, baseball and running.  Of course, not everyone is good at sport so we included other skills such as poetry reading, public speaking, general knowledge, knot tying  and swimming.

No camp is complete without a Musical production and we chose `Oklahoma`.  Of course, none of these boys wanted to take on the girl roles in the event so we called upon in-house bears such as `Hattie`, `Flore` and a number of others.  Unfortunately that was not without its problems.  My well behaved, respectful in house-bears went into a meltdown as they fought over who was to fill the major girl roles and frankly left the `Binkers` quite speechless.... which was a major happening in itself!   We all learned the role of negotiation in decision making and the production went along without a hitch.

Living by the sea one of the most important goals was to have every `Binker` swimming by the time they left camp.  To that end we were very successful.  Safety was a priority.  Unfortunately we did have an outbreak of measles but our Camp Nurse coped very well and the majority of the Binker`s had either had measles or been vaccinated but we still had poison ivy.

By the end of Camp all the Binkers had learned what was expected of them and they returned to their owners with a Camp t-shirt; Achievement awards for each individual Binker; a report on their behaviour and the goals they had worked towards and medals for events they had won.
They had, on their last days fishing activity, each caught a little merbear in shell which they also took home to their owners.  Everyone had a great time and I was very proud of their transformation but I have to be honest I was relieved to see them go. 

Unfortunately I have received a number of complaints over the last year about these `Binker`s`
lapsing into inconsiderate behaviour again.  It has been some time since the Camp and while I do advise owners not to over indulge these little characters and their antics they remain an easily bored `handful`.  

Therefore, I will be announcing a special event for `Binkers` in the next week.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

San Diego Teddy Bear Show 14 & 15 January 2012

I do so miss meeting up with old - no make that longstanding- bear artist friends since there are so few Teddy Bear Shows these days.  Therefore, it was not hard for Jon Port to talk me in to attending this event which I first did many years ago. 

It is being held in the Al Bahr Shriner Center, 5440 Kearny Mesa Road, San Diego.  I hope I get to see some of you there.  

I hope to have some one of a kind gollies, dragons and teddy bears.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Convention 2012

Thank you to everyone who has contacted me regarding the Convention theme for 2012.  I think blogging is new to all of us and many of you have emailed me directly rather than post comments on the blog - so I have decided to summerise it all here.

There were some great new suggestions of themes and I will certainly hold those ideas for next year.  Clearly many of you had discussed this subject at the event and I am planning to keep with your ideas.  We will make our main theme `Carousels` partly because I have got excited about it but mainly because that is what you requested!!!  I have a number of designs on paper including the bear event piece.  We will include in the event a `Sweet 16` party and that may be where the dragon event piece will come from because I am having trouble fitting him into the `Carousel` theme.  However, I am still working on it but a dragon riding on a carousel horse is too far fetched even for me.

Jamie suggested that I add additional characters to some of the old sets such as `Wizard of Oz`, `The Nutcracker` and `Camelot` and `Alice`.  When we first started doing the conventions I did plan to do that but somehow I forgot about it.  I have always meant to make a `Clarissa` for the Nutcracker for example.  I did add the `Pumpkin Head and the Sawhorse` to the Oz collection some years ago and it remains one of my favorite pieces.  I also added `Alice holding the little baby pig` to the Alice Collection.  

`Wizard of Oz Collection`
I am off on a trip later this week but look out for some fun news for all those `Binkers` out there which will automatically post up while I am away.  I hope to still be able to get into my Blog but  never know!

`Pumpkin Head and the Sawhorse`

10th Anniversary - Alice with the Pig Baby

Alice Collection


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

First of all I have to wish everyone a `Happy Thanksgiving` it is going to be a special one in my house because I have both sons home for the first time in four years!  Hurray!!!

 Can you Help

I am busy planning next years Deb Canham Convention which will be held 5th-7th October 2012.  What I need your help on is a `theme`.  Last year we had `Fairy Stories` and previously we have had `Mardi Gras`, `Safari` and `Halloween` to name but a few.   I need the theme to design the `Convention pieces` and the small limited edition prize pieces.  I have posted some pictures of some of last years Fairy story characters.  

I could not bring myself to do a Troll that ate Billy Goats so I made `Trollina` on the second row on the right.  She jumped out from under the bridge and chased the Billy Goats down the road to kiss them - they hated that!  So much nicer than being eaten though!

Please add your comments.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Creating a Blog

I have to say that I am beginning to believe I might be a genius!!!  I have customized my template, added a Facebook badge, created a page and in the process lost the only two followers I had.  I realize I might have been a bit premature announcing I had started a blog.  It takes time to get it up to where you want it to be.  However, I am taking baby steps and moving forward. 

The aim of this blog was to provide a way to keep in better contact with my collectors and to have a more current news feed for collectors than I can manage on a static website.  It is brilliant.  The remaining question is what took me so long to get it going?  I still have to add a box somewhere for `Upcoming Events`.  I also have to get this to run on my webpage but if I achieve it all today I won`t have anything left to challenge me tomorrow!  A day without challenges - I couldn`t stand it.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

`Winter Sleigh Ride`   Teddy bear measures 3.75 inches, mouse 2.5 inches and the snowman 3 inches.  The bear and mouse are made from German mohair.  Limited to 50 pieces world wide.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Some of the 2011 Holiday releases

 `Pine Nut` pictured right was a limited edition of 30 pieces world wide.  He measures 3.75 inches, is made of mohair and is fully jointed.  He has a lovely gold mohair with a brown fleck and a dark green sewn in mohair jacket.  He is now sold out of my office but may be found in some stores. 
`Holly Beary` also measures 3.75 inches and is made of mohair and fully jointed.  He was also limited to 30 and I have no more available to send to stores.  His mohair is a light gold and is jacket is red with a black fleck.
 `Poinsettia` is a 3.75 inch fully jointed dragon made from ultra suede and 100% wool.  She has a white feather hair with a gold lurex thread and carries her own trombone!!!  She is limited to 60 pieces.

`O Tannenbaum` is 3.75 inches and made from green ultrasuede and blue velvets.  He has red silk bow trim and spots and carries a French horn.  He is limited to 65 pieces world wide.

Why I am starting a blog

I do have a web page at but it is easier to post little bits of news up on a blog.  I produce miniature fabric bears, dragons, mice and other animals in small limited editions and sell them to stores and collectors all over the world.  I also have a facebook page `Deb Canham Artist Designs` and I am trying to get everything on to one page so people can access the different information easily.

I am also introducing a `Deb Canham Studio Line` for my one of a kind pieces and other `different` things I make.