Joe & Monty Sours
Monty and Joe began creating collector teddy bears in 1981. Before their first bear was produced, over a year was spent studying teddy bears of all types to determine the features that create the warmth of a teddy bear. A great deal of time was also spent studying real bears, both in zoos and in their natural habitat. As the teddy bear is an abstract art form, the artists have incorporated the features of the live bear while capturing the warm cuddliness of the teddy bear. The same is true of their animals. The object was to capture the personality of each animal rather that an anatomically correct representation.
Monty and Joe Sours were the first artists to create a mohair plush teddy bear completely from scratch. They started with an angora goat. The hair was sheared, spun into yarn and hand woven into plush mohair fabric. The paws pad material was flat woven mohair and hand spun mohair yarn was used for the nose and mouth. The fabric was hand dyed with walnut hulls and oak bark from their own trees.
"Bear Lady" bears and animals have been the recipients of numerous awards, to include the " Golden Teddy Award", the "Toledo Glass City Award" and many others. Their llama, "Calista" has been nominated for the "1999 Toby Award" under the friends category. Their bears are featured in numerous museums throughout the United States as well as Europe and Japan.
Each teddy bear or animal is created as an individual art piece and will have its own personality. A "Bear Lady" bear or animal will provide its adopted owner with a lifetime of companionship and pleasure.