It’s the Hugglets Winter Bearfest in Kensington this Sunday (Feb 22) which sees 100 artisan teddy creators offering thousands of cuddly bears for sale, plus a ‘hospital’ for cherished companions who’ve come a bit unstuffed. To celebrate, we asked Time Out readers to Share Their Bears. Above, @JanesLondon contributed Bruin Bear (‘a Merrythought with bells in his ears’) and below, you can find the other furry friends keeping Londoners safe from monsters each night.
‘He’s actually Winnie the Pooh, and was my mum’s as a kid, then passed down to me. I used to play ‘fix him’ as a kid which means he’s been re-stuffed enough to make him look like Frankenstein. I’m 25…’ – Jack Edwards
‘Red Bear and I have been together for almost 30 years, our relationship is quite frankly, a bit weird. I LOVE HIM. He’s so red.’ – Sarah Church
‘This is Nambi Ng – Ng is my boyfriend’s surname, and since he is the one who gave me Nambi, I think Nambi should have his surname too! She is originally from Thailand (a tag on her butt said she’s made in China though) but moved to London two years ago. Nambi loves wearing different pretty dresses and travelling & taking lot of pictures. Nambi loves eating Haribo Goldbear. Her dream is being able to use the touch screen phone with her own hands (she has tried before but found that it didn’t work).’ – Jane Petcharat
‘This is actually Bulgy #2. Bulgy #1 was left behind in a bank when I was 3 years old. I was in the local paper searching for him, but we were never reunited!’ – Izzy
‘Gary is actually a gorilla, though no-one believes me. He was bought for me by my ex for Valentines Day, and has since scared off many potential new boyfriends, who seem to find Gary staring at them from beside the bed somewhat offputting’ – hannahmck
‘Oscar loves his tea in the morning.’ – polkadotfun
“Jeremy Bear here. I have my own Twitter account. I go on lots of adventures and enjoy seeing the world. I even blog about chocolate, my favourite food, and I have lots of stuffed toy/ bear friends on social media too.” – Jeremy
Sidney and Sid Junior:
‘This is Sidney (with the fetching jumper) and his little brother Sid Junior picnicking in Hyde Park this Summer. Sidney is a member of a bobsleigh team with some of his best teddy pals and loves knitwear and cuddles. Sid J likes riding the Teddy Tube to gymnastics training and snuggling up in bed to watch the tennis. His favourite drink is lime squash.’ – Bethan
‘I got Betsy the day I was born, over 26 years ago, and she was bigger than me. Not so much now!’ – Louise
I still sleep and watch television with him and he is my best friend. Every year I attend the proms as a prommers and Jimmy comes along and listens to all the concerts with me and is a firm favourite with all the regulars. Thus Christmas I when out and took Jimmy to see some of the Paddington Bear statues and he when on a guided tour round Trafalgar square. vintage_gent22
‘Present from my boyfriend when I moved to London. My bear has been to New York with me and he always comes back home with me from uni.’ – Katie McCulloch
‘I got him when i was just born, he was bigger than me. He was also red, and furry, and had white fluffy ears, and soft black felt for claws, on all his cute little limbs. He’s literally been defurred by love. Also, he has been around diplomats at the OECD, scientists at CERN, professors in Australia, politicians at Parliament House in Canberra, and currently living with staff of the UK banking regulator! High brow that all that may be, Jojo can down a pint in one go, and swears like a trooper. He’s an effing legend!’ – @hamnibs
Some teddies who will remain nameless:
Krolik & Zdzislaw:
‘When I move to London, the first month I was staying in a serviced apartment. My housekeeping used to arrange my ‘little mates’ just like in the photo, every time they cleaned my apartment. I found this hilarious :)’ – Aneta M
…who know words can describe.
‘I have had him as long as I can remember. When I was younger I had leukaemia and he went through it all with me. His headwear changes periodically.’ – Lucy Yate
‘He hates it when I say he looks like Larry the Lamb.’ – @runningbearblue
‘Bunny was hand made by a lady and given to me when I was born. It was just after the second world war and there were no toys for children in shops. This little rabbit has been with me all my life and is now treasured by my grand daughter. I once lost him in Woolworths and he was set on top of a till waiting to be reunited. He is dearly loved.’ – lmjprint
…who shall remain a mystery. From Aleksandra.
‘My granny sewed this sweetie for me when I was born, May 1968. Love him so much! 😀 Totally BFF.’ – Lia Domingues
Judi did not deign to describe his interior life.
‘Big Ted has been in the family for about thirty years – he belonged to my older brother and has lived in East and North London, Essex and Surrey over the years. He’s well travelled and would make an EXCELLENT Toy Story character.’ – Matthew
Spiggy #1 and #2:
‘Before and after hugs.’ – Shelley Laws
‘Leopold is a hand made, fun loving lion who spends his life jumping from film set to film set meeting wonderful people cast and crew!’ – @leopoldfilm
…who is an enigma, wrapped in a mystery.
Find out more about the Hugglets Winter Bearfest.