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Meet Poppy Atkinson from Briar Rose Bears

I started creating bears from my home in the Lake District in 2016, which started as a hobby while finishing my degree, I soon realised I enjoyed creating bears and this is when Briar Rose Bears started. Since then I have taught myself different styles and techniques and created my own patterns. In 2020 I started up an online show for bear artists with the help of some friends, called the Independent Bear Artist Show.

Do you have any professional making qualifications or did you do a course?

I am totally self taught as an artist though I do have a bachelors of arts from the Open University. All my patterns for my bears are also made by me.

Where do you get your ideas?

I get a lot of my ideas from the natural world and wildlife and try to put my own ideas to what I see around me.

How long does one of your bears take to make?

It varies how long my work takes however on average I spend 2-3 days on smaller bears and up to 1 week on the bigger complex ones. If I'm making displays and accessories I sometimes work on them over a couple of weeks, though I tend to work on one until I'm satisfied with the result.

What's your favourite toy?

As well as making bears I also collect them, I have a wide variety but my favourite have always been Steiff ever since I received my first one as a Christmas gift. This is where my bear collecting and creating bears as an artist started. 

Are you working on anything new at the moment?

Recently I've been enjoying creating little displays for the bears, the most recent one was a wooden swing for a small traditional bear to sit on. I have some more ideas that I would like to create and work on soon.



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