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Happiness is ... A Lakeland Bear!

A look at these magical bears in the November Vectis Teddy Bear Auction 

In the auction on Tuesday 10th November there is a fine ramble of Lakeland Bears.  Most of the group is part of the 'Cullercoats Collection' of over 500 teddy bears and related pieces.

Each Lakeland bear from this group was much loved with lives and friends of their own. Phillipa, Lot no.193 is dressed in a tweed skirt and one of the iconic knitted jumpers designed by the Lakeland Bear founder Wendy Phillips. She is accompanied by four enchanting files containing a huge quantity of correspondence and photographs, many are from her friend "Langdale", including holidays in the Lake District, regular letters, Christmas cards, post cards and original photographs. She was also featured in Issue 4 (Spring 1991) edition of Teddy Bear Times Magazine alongside another Lakeland Bear who lived in Norwich.

Phillipa returned several times a year to the Lakeland Bear shop and was joined by several other teds including Penelope, Wilfred and Pamela. Of one such visit Phillipa enthused "This year we all went to Ambleside to the new shop and got jumpers chosen from the collection hanging in the back of the shop. I chose blouse and new chord trousers. Penelope picked a yellow jumper with barn owls on and a red one with hedgehogs and a tweed skirt". 

Phillipa and her growing band of friends enjoyed a wide friendship circle corresponding with several like-minded protectors. Wilfred, smartly dressed in blue chords and a sheep jumper had his own pen friend in 'Toddy Nelson from Germany who in his initial letter explained "I hope you can read her writing; she has never been near a typewriter. I had heard from 'Appleby Woods' that you are really anxious to hear from other Lakeland Bears especially living in other countries or further afield".

Each letter was filled with tales of adventures, alongside hand drawings, postcards, quotes, ink stamping and notations of gifts included for Easter, Halloween or Christmas. All these were painstakingly filed in date order with each bear having his own scrap file of letters. These will be accompanying the bears on the next stage of their journey. 

We all love to have provenance with bears that come to live with us. A historical record such as these are a wonder to behold. These Lakeland Bears had already packed a lot into their lives but are ready to start a whole new set of adventures and perhaps help their new 'adoptive owner' make some new friends.

Also, in the sale is a large quantity of additional clothing (some original), in Lots 198 and 199 mainly in Lakeland bear scale to enable the bears to have an outfit for every occasion.

In addition to the Cullercoats Collection bears there are three additional Deans edition Lakeland Bears. These are entirely original and with clothing and accessories too.  

Lakeland Bears were the brain child of Wendy Phillips, a knitwear designer who initially used the bears as props for her creations. After repeated request to sell the bears too ‘Lakeland Bears’ were born. They were all meticulously attired in pure wool skirts, trousers or dungarees, Fair Isle knitwear care of Wendy in a variety of colours and designs, caps, socks and handmade north country clogs. Accessories, reproduced to scale included rucksacks, walking sticks, climbing ropes and hooks which gave each bear its own individual character.

The Lakeland Bears will be sold in the Teddy Bear Auction at Vectis on Tuesday November the 10th.

For more information please contact Joanne McDonald on +44 (0) 1642 750616 or email jo.mcdonald@vectis.co.uk

Little Folk Lakeland Bears "Phillipa" vintage teddy bear, golden plush, amber and black plastic eyes, black plastic dog nose, close clipped muzzle, felt inner ears, fully jointed, suedette pads, Good to Good Plus, wearing knitted jumper, tweed skirt, petticoats and white knickers, 18"/46cm. NB: Phillipa comes with four files containing large quantity of correspondence and photographs, many are from her friend "Langdale", including holidays in the Lake District, regular letters, Christmas cards, post cards and original photographs, etc; (qty).
Estimate: £100 - £140 Sold For: £130
Little Folk Lakeland Bears "Wilfred" vintage teddy bear, golden plush, amber and black plastic eyes, black plastic dog nose, close clipped muzzle, felt inner ears, fully jointed, suedette pads, Good to Good Plus, wearing knitted jumper, blue and white gingham shirt, herringbone tweed trousers, tweed flat cap, 15"/38cm. NB: Wilfred comes with three files containing quantity of correspondence and original photographs, Christmas Cards, post cards, from Rosemary, Toddy, on holiday in the Lake District, etc; (qty).
Estimate: £80 - £120 Sold For: £90
Dean's Rag Book Lakeland Bears vintage teddy bear, with copy of Mr Walkright's Guide to Lakeland Bear Country map, brown / dark brown / light brown plush, amber and black plastic eyes, black vertically stitched nose, close clipped muzzle, felt inner ears, fully jointed, suedette pads, wearing fairisle knitted sweater, rust corduroy trousers, tweed flat cap and scarf, pale blue knitted socks, size 4 wooden clogs, knapsack, carrying stick, slight discolouration to clothing otherwise Good to Good Plus, 18"/46cm.
Estimate: £80 - £120 Sold For: £200