Thursday, November 13, 2014

Solar Bear Family

This is a re-post of a post I did a few years ago because I have been too busy to post a new post.  In keeping with the spirit of posts, I thought I would re-post my Solar Bear Post post.

A picture of our unfinished kitchen too!

I was at a craft sale a few years back and shamelessly
 bought a bear magazine holder to copy.
  It was just so beary cute I couldn't resist.
  I built an army until they all turned on me.  Karma I guess, but whatever it was, I knew I had to get rid of the creepy little buggers cuz they just wouldn't stop staring. 
 Off to their new homes they went and off the names came on my Christmas list.
  I figure it would be safer if they were split up.
Material List:
2 - 1x6 spruce or pine board 5 feet 
1 4x4 post 30" long
1- 2x10 - 24 to 30" long
12" of 2x2 cut into three 4 inch pieces
Paint brush
Black paint
Tan paint
Blush (optional)
Protective clear coat
antique medium
solar light
2- 5" Lag bolts
6- 2 1/2" screws
18-1 1/2" screws
$ store scarf (cut into 3 scarves)
wood glue
scroll saw or bandsaw 
or a jigsaw(if you are really motivated)
sander and sandpaper
drill bit and drill for solar light 

The pattern pieces were freehanded but I put the measurements under the pics in case you are interested in having your own family.
Bear heights are 24" 20" and 16"  and the width of the 1x6 boards

5" long by about 3" wide

About 7" long by about 3 1/2 inches wide

I cut bear bodies from one board and feet from the other.  The noses were cut from the scrap ends and the feet on a diagonal.  The pictured bears' body parts had been previously screwed.....that doesn't sound very good....what I meant to say is he had a previous life..let's just say I used a recycled board.

Sand all pieces; with "extreme" sanding on the edges.  This helps add a rustic element to the bears.
Base piece cut to 24" and bear supports. cut to 4"

Light post...30"

Paint all the details on the feet, nose, and bear body.

Paint the ears too!  OOPS  I forgot here!

I used real blush for that "I just worked out" look. 

Attach the nose, screwing from the back. 

All the screws are invisible from the front.  I attached the bear to the base block from the front, and then attached the feet from the back.  The feet cover the screws that attached the bear body  to the base block.  Hope you followed that cuz it made me dizzy just trying to type it!

Where are their ears? OOPS!!

Here they are.

Paint the lines in the ears too.

After distressing the bears and post, you might want to add some stain to the distressed areas to darken them.  Also, another boo boo here.  You will want to distress the post and the bears prior to assembly.  I forgot to do this and had to squish my poor hands in and about their bodies.

Clear coat the bears with your choice of sealer.  I used a water based sealer and four years later, they still stand outside, every season......staring at me.

Measure the diameter of your solar light holder and drill a tight fitting hole on the top and center of the lamp post.  I like to drill at least 4 inches in for good support.  You can use whatever solar lights you can find.

  Winter is coming and they wanted matching scarves from Coco Chanel and that's what they got.  I quickly sprayed some Coco Chanel perfume on dollar store scarves!

Don't stare at the bears cuz it makes them nervous and then it makes me nervous.  I still get nightmares from my little bear army!

Hope you like them!

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  1. wow they are soo cute karen. i love them. makes me want to have a picture together with your bears.

  2. hehe,,,,,Nice Post :)
    and do not miss....




    It´s FUN :)
    Håkan ( The Roseman)

  3. love this. that's for the pattern and tutorial.

  4. love, love, love these bears!! This is going on my to-do list for sure. Thanks so much for posting this tutorial.


  5. These bears are adorable! I love the idea of using them with the solar lights!

  6. Awwwwww, I love 'em. They are sooooo cute. Sheila @

  7. Them bears are adorable. Especially like the magazine holder. I would fill with greenery and pinecones along with a Christmas bandana tied around the neck of the bear and add some faux berries, etc in the magazine rack. Would make for a cute item/decoration to sit by a fireplace or near the Christmas tree or on an entry table or even in a bathroom to have some pretty rolled towels in it. Many possibilities for the bear magazine holder. Speaking of pine cones I see all them there on the ground and trees......Oh, if only I lived closer, I would pick them all up for you

  8. SHUT UP!!! These are so freaking cute! When I saw that picture of the bunch of them I thought for sure that was a store of some kind. You made all these?! Wow! Adorable, and you should open an etsy shop too!

    This was definitely a post worth resurecting!

    Have a great weekend!

  9. Phew. I am exhausted just looking at your pictures. You are one ambitious woman! And I love the special touch of blush. :)

  10. I LOVE your bear family! So cute! I want me one of those jig saw things! The things I could cut!!!

  11. Your bears are amazing!! Love them. You have some mad skills!

  12. I am glad you reposted because I missed this one! I love them! My mom used to be big into making wooden cut outs like these for the holidays. She would spend hours crafting them and they always looked so good. I wish she would have kept them, as I would like to have them now, but she got rid of them when all the kids moved out :(

    And I don't buy crafts much anymore. I just take pictures and steal their ideas that way lol ;)

  13. You are so funny, but I couldn't not stop staring at your bears! They are the cutest! Love the little scarves on them too! I would never have thought to make those just by seeing one magazine holder. Guess that's why you're such a genius!

  14. These could not be more CUTE!! I want a pack for my front porch (though, they would probably get stolen if I put them out there, ugh!!). The magazine holder ones are a great idea, but I love that you turned yours into a "solar" light post. Such a cute way to be greeted on a blustery night (or day for that matter). Pinned and shared, Karen. Love!!

  15. Well, I was going to say something like "Where's Goldilocks?" but changed my mind! The 3 Bears & lamp post are really cute, but don't know about that army. I had a bear army going at one time, but they were the soft-sided kind. I had been making stuffed teddy bears as gifts for my grands & any other child (or adult) who needed a bear hug. Then a few people started asking me to make them one for a special gift, and I was suddenly in business. I'd make a bunch of the bear bodies and hang them from hooks in my sewing room. I called them my "hungry bears," but they were just a bit creepy until I got them stuffed! I kind of miss my little Bear Army!

  16. I missed these first time around thanks for resharing, they're so very cute!

  17. These are soooo cute. I should be on your Christmas list...hint

  18. These are soooo cute! I cracked up at the "real blush for the just worked out look!!!

  19. They really ARE so beary cute! Adorable. You could sell these at craft fairs! You need an etsy shop or something. :) Sharon

  20. Hi Karen, these are just way too cute and I love the little family by the light pole. This takes me back to the many years of cutting my own wood for my designs. Now it's mostly ornaments. I have all the tools and such but I give it to my hubby to do now that I am way too busy. Thanks for sharing the pattern.
    Great post and glad you reposted.
    Have a nice weekend.

  21. Very cute bears! But why aren't they covered in blood? Mine would be totally covered in blood because I would have cut my fingers off trying to use that saw thing. Yup, fingers everywhere. In fact, I'm not even sure how I'm typing this without having any fingers and all.


  22. These bears are adorable and so are you! So nice to visit your blog and find out what a fun gal you are! I received my wonderful package from you today and I must say I love EVERYTHING! The Charlotte is adorable and will be on my Pink tree soon! Can't wait to blog about what you sent. Hugs!!

  23. So glad to see the bears again. They are still cute, but I cannot imagine a whole herd of them staring at me.

  24. Omg your are hilarious. Thank you for not only sharing the how to (you're very generous) thnks for the giggles. 5 years later your army is still strong.


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