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 Teddy Bear Making Skill Centre
Caring For Your Teddy Bear

 The Skill Centre< Teddy Bear Care

We have seen many methods recommended for cleaning teddies but the following is what we think is probably one of the best - and it is also quite inexpensive!

The biggest problem with new teddies is dust and tobacco smoke.

To maintain your new teddy, vacuum them every few months. Use the upholstery brush on your vacuum cleaner (it may be an idea to clean it first) or take your teddy outside and turn your hairdryer on them on a cold setting to blow the dust off.

 Older or badly soiled teddies...

You will need couple of pieces of terry towelling (9-12 inch squares) and slightly warm water. Use white cloth preferably as the dye can run from coloured cloths, especially when new.

Despite what you may have heard, it is probably better NOT to use soap suds or foam unless it is very necessary - the reason being that they can leave a slightly sticky surface residue that can attract more dirt. 

If you do have to use suds, use a very gentle soap - soap flakes are good, and wash gently with the suds without wetting the backing cloth too much. Then proceed as detailed below.

Wet the cloths and hand wring them out. Wipe down the teddy in the direction of the nap with about as much force as you would exert on a young child’s skin, being reasonably careful not to get the backing too wet. 

Keep moving the cloth to a new area. Use a second cloth to go over the teddy again. You may be very surprised at how much dirt and grime comes off.

Let the bear dry overnight and whatever you do - don't put the bear in the sun or use a hair dryer to dry your teddy quickly

Lastly, give your teddy a good brush. This will tickle them a lot so they may squirm about quite a bit. Ignore this and they will thank you when you have done!

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 Just adopted Old Teddies...

If you have just adopted an old teddy bear, it may be wise to take
 some precautions before putting it into your existing bear hug.

If you are completely certain of the bear’s previous home then you will probably be all right - otherwise it might pay to be a bit careful and put the bear into an “isolation ward” for a time.

Old fillings and fur can harbour pests and diseases so make sure that you do your best to destroy these before letting it near your hug - or your kids!

One method that we have used - and although it sounds unkind - is to fumigate the bear.

How? Find two plastic bags, big enough to take your bear. Liberally coat the inside of one bag with a “fly and bug” killer spray. Leave to dry - completely. When dry, put your teddy inside the bag and seal tightly. Leave aside for about 14 days

What about the second plastic bag - well, and we wouldn’t recommend this unless you are completly desperate (or paranoid) - to make completely sure of killing almost everything, after completing the spray procedure above, put your bag with the teddy in INSIDE the second plastic bag and seal that one too. Make room in your freezer and put it in there for about 14 days or so. 

When you remove it, release the teddy from the bags and discard (the bags of course) and allow your teddy to thaw in a warm airy place, gently wiping the fur every day. Don’t rush this bit - it may take quite a while to completely dry inside as well as out. 

When dry, give your teddy a good brush. This will tickle them a lot so they may wriggle about a lot and try to get away from you. Ignore this and they will thank you when you have done!

PLEASE NOTE... The above is information is given to the best of our knowledge and with our best intentions but we cannot accept any responsibility for damage that may be caused to your bear or other soft toys by following the above information - you undertake these steps at your own risk. If you are uncertain about the outcome, it may be wiser to seek out a professional bear restorer for help.

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