Sunday, May 6, 2007

DIY (Do It Yourself)

We continue our stroll thought the Coconut Point Mall. Next stop: Build-A-Bear Workshop. It's a place where you (the child) pick out a plush bear, record your own message, stuff it inside the bear with the rest of the filler, sew-it up, fluff it up, name it and finally take it home, along with his birth certificate. All for around $40.

The store's mission is: "To bring the Teddy Bear to life. An American icon, the Teddy Bear brings to mind warm thoughts about our childhood, about friendship, about trust and comfort, and also about love."

Call me jaded and dispassionate, but my childhood stuffed bear, Misiek, was just that. A stuffed animal. I have no recollection of how Misiek and I parted, but I assure you, if I saw him again, there would be no hysterical reunion. Mabe just a pat on his threadbare head ;-)

But hey, that's just me. How about you?

25 comments:

Nathalie said...

When you say 'record your own message' - do you mean it will be a talking bear? So a mum could record her own voice singing a lullaby for example? How true to life is it?

Apart from my questions, I'm just like you - not all that sentimental about my old teddy bear. Served its purpuse at the time, let's move on. Cheers!

Nathalie said...

Ps - enjoyed watching Mr. Ed!

Kate said...

I have to think about this one. Having a stuffed toy is fine, but your description of the workshop seems to be a bit contrived to me. I could get more sentimental about a rag doll I think.

Leena said...

My first experience about a stuffed bear was, when I got one from my first boyfriend,I was sexteen then.
And it was made from a real bear fur.
I have still that bear somewhere, my husband did not like it for some reason :)I was just nineteen, when I met my husband and forgot "the bear boy".
But my children had some stuffed bears and grandchildren have too many as every kind toys in my opinion.

Colourful Sunday to you, where you
are!

Nikon said...

I don't know if we have that in Rhode Island yet. I think it is a Franchise thing.

Mandi said...

Oh I've heard of this - it sounds amazing. Any kid would just love it.

Sally said...

I sort of like the memory of my teddy, but I wouldn't get all Sebastian and Brideshead about it!

Oh, the shops all look like something you'd find in a Disneyland : bright colours, manicured streets etc.

Frank said...

This is Unbearable! This brought back memories of when my mom told me my teddy was kidnapped and murdered by terrorists. I immediately went to see my college councellor. I thought I was over it by now.

lv2scpbk said...

Love colorful photos. I really like yesterday's photo also.

Jilly said...

Love Frank's comment! Well I loved my gollywog (of course totally politically incorrect and doesn't exist anymore). There used to be a brand of jam (jelly to Americans) that featured little tear-off golliwogs and I used to collect those too. Eventually my adored golliwog lost a leg I think - can't really remember what happened to him, but politically incorrect or not, he was my boy!

Dsole said...

hahahaha, funny comments, as always!
I had a couple of them, but we don't like each other right now...

Abraham Lincoln said...

This is a clever idea. It would have broader applications. I can imagine all sorts of built it yourself franchises. Some I can't put down here as this is a family group. As always, Isabella, this is a fantastic look at your town and your photography skills, not to even mention, your creativity.

I hope you get to see the Rose-Breasted Grosbeak that came to Brookville, Ohio yesterday. It is the first one I have seen since we moved here 44 years ago.

Peter said...

Very nice photo, but one question: Can you make your living for long on such a specific business?

Glenn Standish said...

What a great store! Very American! My wife would just love it...she adores teddy bears...and collects many! Funny that you called your childhood bear Misiek...as that is "bear" in Polish, isn't it?!!

anu said...

Wow, that's interesting. Kids will freak out.

Dina said...

I've seen these on one of my trips to the uk

Moi said...

i have never been a teddy-bear-sy person..guess i grew up the wrong way....but then i had my cozy younger brother to cuddle upto always when i needed to....and he hated it as he grew older so i found myself a boyfriend instead...:)

Monica said...

Well I don't know. Maybe it's not a reason to be too sentimental, but at least it's a good activity for children, better than those violent video games they enjoy playing.

isabella said...

Nathalie - that's correct. You can record a bedtime story or a lullaby.

Leena - do you ever wonder what became of "the bear boy"?

Jilly - I had to Google your gollywog ;-) Now I see what you mean...

Abe - thanks for that nice compliment...

Peter - American consumerism+children=a winning combination. This is a fast growing, successful franchise. Look for it around you arrondissement soon ;-)

Glenn - yes it is!

Ex-Shammickite said...

I still have my teddy bear that my mother made for me... he name is Teddina.

Felicia said...

The store also has clothes and accessories for your special bear...for a special price. We got one as a gift. I've been in the store and I think that a hat for your bear might be around $5, sunglasses $4 and cell phone $6!

richard said...

Well I never... what will they think of next

Ming_the_Merciless said...

It's commercialism at its best. I took my nieces to Build-a-Bear for their birthdays a couple years ago. The basic package (ie. bear plus stuffing), like you said, is around $40. Add the clothes, the "special heart" to be placed inside the bear, etc. the price goes up exponentially.

Actually, I'm surprise the concept is still alive, being that kids are now more into video games than a bear.

Caz said...

I think the concept of this place is great (we have them in Scotland too!) but I seriously think they've lost the sentimental part through the commercial haze. I mean, the teddy bear (or horse, cow, sheep, cat, etc) could have a better wardrobe than most humans! Lol. Maybe I shouldn't be so quick to judge lol. I have a cat from there dressed as a footballer and wearing sunglasses hahaha.

Kuanyin said...

I saw the lady on Oprah who started this biz, and she's not a millionaire...smart lady! I happen to love teddybears, but I don't play with them much anymore....