An Interesting Tale About The Steiff Bear

steiff elefanteleA Steiff bear is no doubt on the frontline of the toy industry for many reasons. Apart from the brand’s undeniable quality in the manufacture of their toys from beginning to end, it’s also no secret that they started it all. Yes, German brand Steiff was the pioneering company to first produce the ever beloved toy we adore then and now.

It’s over a century old but it still has the chops when it comes to these hit cuddly wonders. Ever wondered how it came to be?

It all began with the birth of its founder, Margerete Steiff, in Giengen Germany back in the 24th of July in 1847. At a year and a half old she was diagnosed with polio, an infectious viral disease affecting the nervous system that leads to temporary or permanent paralysis, which caused both her legs to become paralyzed accompanied by a painful sensation on her right arm.

Despite her condition, Maragrete grew to become a happy child who had a certain knack for creativity. Despite her father’s hesitation, she went to school and took up sewing classes that by the age of 17 she has completed her seamstress training. When her sisters opened a dressmaker shop in 1862, she participated as a part-time seamstress. When her sisters married later and left the shop, Maragarete took the reins. A decade later, she has converted what was once their family home into a workroom for her dressmaking projects.

But it wasn’t until December 8, 1879 when the idea of plush toys began. After seeing a photo of a fabric elephant in an issue of the magazine Modenwelt, she decided to use the pattern to make a pincushion in the shape of an elephant which she called as the “Elefantle”. But after selling them off, she noticed that kids played with them instead. This led her to the idea and the birth of the Steiff brand as a toy manufacturer.

In 1880, over 5000 pieces of the Elefantle was sold. With the help of her brother Fritz, they began making more stuffed animal designs and opened a manufacturing house called Filz-Spielwaren-Fabrik.

But it wasn’t until 1902 that the Stieff bears were born. Margarete’s favorite nephew Richard started to help out in the company and designed toys. He was particularly fond of bears that he decided to make a toy like it. Known as the “Bear 55PB”, it was a 5-jointed mohair plush toy with movable arms and legs. Since then, it was an uphill soar.

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The Role of Toys and Play in IQ and EQ

kids-iqStuffed animal toys are loved not only because of their cute and cuddly nature but because of the many benefits that they bring. Children who are fond of playing with them are found to generate better IQ and EQ scores according to many studies. If you’re interested as to how that came to be, we partnered up with the lovely team from to bring you a list of the different roles of toys and play in a child’s IQ and EQ.

Getting to Know the Senses – Have you ever wondered why doctors allow parents to give their babies stuffed animals? This is because, these toys are soft enough to be played with so there is no danger in them unless they are much bigger than the child. The texture of their fur, whiskers, eyes and paws allow a child to get to know their sense of touch. Also, the hues and designs help them get accustomed with patterns and color variations.

Motor Skill Development – Motor skills pertain to actions that involve the use of muscles. Babies, toddlers and children are not yet fully developed and accustomed to these skills. Play helps them discover them. It allows them to get accustomed to and even practice it on a regular basis through a fun way.

Flunks Separation Anxiety – Parents won’t be by their children’s side all the time even if they want to. There are things like jobs, chores and even the kid’s schooling that will create some physical separation between parent and child within a day. Many kids are not comfortable with this so they tend to feel anxious. Their blood pressure rises up and their moods plummet to a slump. Some would even have crazy tantrums. Stuffed toys help ease such dilemma. Their comforting feel and nature are able o calm frayed nerves and make them feel less alone or separated.

Imagination and Creativity – Playing with toys highly encourage imagination and creativity in children. If you notice, playtime is where many kids tend to make up stories about their toys. They would give all of them names and even put items together making them part of a family. A teddy bear becomes a prince, a doll its princess and a dinosaur as their pet. The stories can even range from normal to crazy in a heartbeat. Also, this is where they are likely to imitate activities such as dressing up, taking a bath, cooking, counting or brushing teeth.

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The Thrill You Get When You Buy Teddy Bears Online

Shopping has its magic. Admit it. At some point in your life, it gave you quite a thrill! But our world is an ever changing and evolving one. Even our routines have transformed to fit the modern age, case in point online shopping. But what pleasure is there really when you buy teddy bears online? Allow us to introduce you to its charms.

It gives you some much needed excitement.

We’ve said this before and we’ll say it again. Shopping is fun and exciting. It’s as simple as that. The pleasure you get for buying toys you want to gift yourself or a loved one is beyond words. Add to that the joy of anticipation as you wait for the time to get delivered to your doorstep.

It lets you chill and relax anywhere anytime.

Online shops are open 24/7. You can buy from anywhere and everywhere. You don’t even have to step out of your house to do it. Stuck in traffic? That’s no problem either. All you need is a device and internet connection.

It allows you to travel, figuratively at least.

The toys you purchase via the internet can come from anywhere around the world. They’ve got stories to tell, sewn into every fiber and hem, waiting for you to uncover. In essence, they bring you a sense of wanderlust. You can even travel back in time too if you fancy vintage collectible toys.

It tickles the kid in you.

Who doesn’t love toys? We all do although we can’t deny that we each have our own preferences. Still, purchasing toys is fun and brings out the kids in us. Even if you’re no collector and is simply purchasing one as a present for let’s say your kid, a sibling or a niece, the enjoyment is still the same.

It satisfies convenience.

As previously mentioned, websites operate round the clock. You can be in bed wearing pajamas. You don’t have to step outopening boxof the door amidst traffic nor line up and suffer the long queue at the counter. You can even order from some far away country. If that’s not convenience then we don’t know what is.

It feels like opening presents come Christmas morning.

Opening packages whenever you buy teddy bears online somehow feels like Christmas morning. Even if you already know what’s inside, you still feel giddy and excited once you spot the mailman with your package. Don’t deny it. You do. Everyone does. It’s only the bills we dread.

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Facts You Need to Know About Collectible Teddy Bears

steiff-collectible-teddy-bearIf you notice, people have a knack for categorizing things to the point that at times we unconsciously label ideas the wrong way. We get lost in trying to put everything in boxes that we fail to see the bigger picture. Take collectible teddy bears for instance. You probably have a lot of preconceived notions about them. Take a look at the following lesser known or acknowledged facts. They might just surprise you.

Some of them cost quite a fortune.

Would you believe that the most expensive teddy bear to ever been sold raked up $2.1 million in an auction? The Louis Vuitton Steiff bear smashed records and has been holding the title ever since. Following suit are many other pieces that score hundreds of thousands of dollars apiece.

But not all of them will cost an arm and leg.

Still, not all collectibles are as crazy expensive. Some pieces, especially current but limited releases, are priced for a few hundred to a thousand dollars. It’s still quite up there in the price department but not as hefty as the others.

Not all collectibles are vintage finds.

Most people would assume that all collectible toys are sought after because of their age. Not all of them are in fact antique. Some as mentioned previously are current releases but were only manufactured exclusively. Only a few pieces are made making them truly one of a kind, or well one of a few.

Some pieces come with quite a story to tell.

Some bears have diamonds for eyes. Others are rare collaborations between famous brands while there are those that became sought after because of the story that they hold. Popular examples would be Teddy Girl, the cinnamon bear owned by Col. Henderson which he brought and survived with during the WWII as well as the black mourning bears manufactured during the sinking of the RMS Titanic.

Tags and button in ears can raise their value.

Some toys came with fabric tags and other specific knickknacks. Steiff teddies for example were given button in ears. Their presence can surely increase the value of the toy in the market.

You can score some in auctions.

One of the more popular methods of buying these pieces would be in auctions. You can either go the traditional route or the digital way via the internet. It’s not as hard to look for them as it was before.

But you can also find them in the unlikeliest of places.

Collectible teddy bears may still be found in surprising places although this would mean a combination of luck and hard work. You’d be surprised to know that some collectors scored their toys from garage sales, flea markets and antique stores.


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Mistakes in Caring for Stuffed Animals

steiff stuffed animalsIn order to make them last long and to ensure that they look brand new most if not all of the time, proper care and maintenance must be given to one’s stuffed animals. This is true regardless if the toy is a collectible or not. However, many owners still fail to do this right. The task may sound simple but mistakes are still committed against it. To help you avoid from making the same blunders, we’ve rounded up the most common ones to warn you about them and hopefully get you informed enough to know how to avoid.

MISTAKE: Failure to Know the Toy

AVOID/FIX: One can never really give the right type and amount of care if one does not know the toy. It pays to do your research. Plus, it doesn’t hurt to look at the tags and packaging for care and washing instructions.

MISTAKE: Using Heat in the Cleaning Process

AVOID/FIX: Heat is an enemy to stuffed animals as it has the potential not only to dull the colors but also to melt some accessories and parts. When washing, lukewarm or room temperature is required. Drying must also be done with the complete absence of heat so machines or dryers must be on cool setting and there should be no ‘sun’ drying.

MISTAKE: Allowing Moisture and Humidity

AVOID/FIX: These two encourage mold growth as well as rodent and bug infestation. Choose a space that doesn’t develop moisture or is likely to be humid. Also, never pack your stuffed animals inside plastic bags as they can lock in the moisture and make the toy rot.

MISTAKE: Playing Doctor and Scientist

AVOID/FIX: When something goes amiss or wrong with the toy, immediate repair is necessary to prevent it from getting worse. However, if one has no skill or knowledge to do so then it would be best to look for a professional toy repair shop. Experimenting and playing doctor might do more harm than good. If you do however have the skill and knowledge then go ahead and perform the needed repair.

MISTAKE: Procrastination with Dirt and Damage

AVOID/FIX: The moment that you see any dirt or damage on your stuffed animals, address them immediately. Procrastinating can worsen stains and make them harder to come off. Damages like tears when left for long may grow bigger and even cause for the toy to be at a state of disrepair. Boohoo.

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Places to Shop for Steiff Teddy Bears

steiff-teddy-bearSteiff teddy bears are no doubt a favorite when it comes to stuffed animal toys. Both children and the kids at heart would attest to that. Their charm is undeniable and the quality in which they have been manufactured is immensely commendable. These teddies are popular not only in their regular and mass produced designs but all the more for their limited edition variants and vintage pieces. There is a lot of history and a whole slew of stories neatly tucked within each toy. For sure, you’d love to get yourself one or maybe two or even three! If that’s the case then behold the following list of places for you to scout for Steiff teddy bear!


This one is the most predictable and obvious item on our list. Where else would your reflexes lead you but to the toy shops, boutiques and department stores in town! This is the place to be if you are looking for the latest designs in the market. Obviously if you are going for vintage, limited edition and collectible pieces, this won’t cut it.


For convenience, you may also shop from online stores like . They sell a whole assortment of Steiff teddy bears in a very wide range from the newest designs all the way back to the oldest ones. Your challenge here however is in authenticating the seller or website from whom you wish to buy from.


Don’t discount garage sales as they can tremendously surprise you. People tend to let go of their old and unused belongings and what might seem redundant or useless to them might be of worth to you. It’s worth a try.


Stores like Goodwill and other thrift places contain gems only if you know how to find them. The best part is they often come cheap and affordable. Just see to it that the bear is still in really good condition.


Just like garage sales and thrift shops, antique and vintage stores are considered to be a treasure chest on its own. There are hundreds of bits and bobs for you to find and Steiff teddy bears could be one of them. It’s a hit or miss but why not try?


This is the place to be if you are really into collecting vintage and exclusive Steiff teddy bears. Auctions can be pretty expensive but this will overall depend on the toy at hand.

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