Dating old teddy bears
How to Find out How Old an Antique Teddy Bear Is
You may find something that resembles your toy. The very earliest bears had a comparatively pointed snout and longer limbs. There are several features that help to determine the age of a vintage teddy. Currently, there are a number of variations which indicate what collection a piece is from.
By the s, synthetic fabrics were increasingly used. She wears delightful old jacket with embroidered flowers to front and lace trims.
Unfortunately, this is the identifier that goes missing first. Her squeaker no longer works. His vintage knitted coat suits him well but has no buttons. Look closely and you'll see the hole in his ear where the button used to be. All joints are strong too.
Grace has fur loss from decades of cuddles and she has non working squeaker in her tummy. Many makers had their own distinctive shape. Very soft and silky, it is a fabric woven from Angora goat fleece. Early bears were jointed with cardboard or metal discs and attached with metal pins, which can sometimes show as rust through the fabric. Shorter, stumpy limbs were popular in the s.
The chart below describes the Steiff chest tags over the years. Source Chest tag from a newer plush play toy. Glass eyes are cooler and harder than plastic eyes. Rexine was used by some British and Australian manufacturers, which was a coated oilcloth. The paper chest tags disappear quite easily too.
Also, glass eyes are rounder, if you can feel behind them with your fingers. Wood wool gives the teddy a crunchy feel if squeezed. Law requires that manufacturers use these unless the teddy is labeled as not being a toy. Check the chest to see if there is a piece of string which suggests that a chest tag was once attached.
By the s, plastic foam a shredded, sponge-like foam was most popular, as it allowed for teddies to be wholly synthetic and machine washable. Beginning in the s, polyester wadding became popular and is still used today. When buying vintage or antique ones, it is important to learn the identifying features that help to date them. Some teddies were also made with painted tin or moulded rubber noses.
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