Back Road Bears by Daphne Blau
I began making the Back Road Bears in 2000 after attending my first artist teddy bear show.
I’d been collecting bears for over 30 years and felt inspired to put my crafting abilities to work on
making my own teddies. After making my first bear with lots of help from seasoned artist, Diana Lind
of Wee Treasures in Hillsboro, NH, I was hooked!
I have since left my ‘real job’ as a regional manager for a large retail corporation to pursue the art of
teddy bear making. In 2001 I began selling my bears at shows. In 2002 I learned web design and created
my website. I also published my first original teddy pattern for purchase and more have since followed.
2003 brought new adventures in my bear making career including the opportunity to teach bear making workshops. It’s such a wonderful experience to help others bring their first handmade teddy bear to life.
In 2004 I was juried into the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen… the oldest craftsmen’s league in
the US. That has opened up many new avenues for sales, education and publicity for Back Road Bears.
During the 2005 show season it became quite clear to me that Teddy Bear Shows are suffering. Many
were cancelled, others downsized considerably. I decided to take over the production of a formerly
well-known show in Maine and look forward to making it a new and improved event in August 2006.
When not making bears I am busy with our two Wheaten Terriers, quilting, enjoying the wilderness
around me, learning more about computer graphics and web design and trying to keep my various
health challenges, including diabetes and thyroid disease, under control. I live in the mountains of
New Hampshire with my husband and biggest fan, Henry. We have 4 wooded acres near Lake Sunapee
and are frequently visited by deer, moose, bear, coons, coyotes, bob cats and a beautiful array
of birds. I am never at a loss for inspiration!
My bears have been adopted all over the world and I've made many special friends through this wonderful addiction! I appreciate the encouragement and knowledge bear artists share with each other and the enthusiasm and commitment from so many terrific collectors.
May your life be blessed with love, laughter and a teddy bear or two!
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