Sunday, 17 December 2017

Bertie Blue Whale Joins the COLDHAMCUDDLIES

Good afternoon everyone - back once more, and this week,  "on time"  too!

Cy Bear back again, and delighted to be here and able to introduce you to the latest member of the COLDHAMCUDDLIES Family/Shop - Bertie Blue Whale.
Our Custom Order Blue Whale Ornamental Toy (named Bertie Whale for our Shop Listing) is made from a Vintage  (1973) Simplicity Pattern which was purchased more recently either from a fellow Etsy Shop or while surfing on-line elsewhere.    Isobel has been waiting for an excuse to "have a go" ever since.

The Blue Fleece Ornamental Whale Toy's Dimensions are:

Lying on its side, from nose to mid-tail -

Length:  36.00 inches (92.00 cms)
Height:    11.00 inches (28.00 cms) Tip of Fin to Base
Weight:     2.00 pounds (0.97 kilos)  approximately
Girth:       27.00 inches (69 cms) midway along back

As much of a "head-on" view as we can manage in our flat for an Ornament of this size!

The original pattern is actually for a Dolphin - but in October 2017 during a conversation with a fellow Slimming World member while she waited for her weekly "weigh-in", Isobel was asked if she could make MrsPA a Whale  - when she heard Isobel was a Toy Maker.

A close-up of Bertie's Tail

Returning home, the Pattern Library was checked, the Dolphin pattern was found and a photo of the giant Toy e-mailed to MrsPA.

The original picture which began the whole story!

Isobel suggested that by slightly altering the Dolphin head shape (by eliminating the prominent Dolphin"beak") a recognisable Whale could appear. Thus, we were commissioned to produce a Blue Whale for Christmas 2017MrsPA and her husband had recently spent a splendid holiday in South Africa and during their adventure had, had the pleasure of watching a school of whales off the southern coast of that country.  The fact that many years ago, Isobel too had travelled the same area (although minus the Whale sighting!) made the acceptance of the challenge a "no-brainer", and accordingly it was placed in our Order Book.   (ALL ORDERS RECEIVED in our COLDHAMCUDDLIES shop are handled strictly in order of receipt.)  Once the Whale order reached the Top of the List, work on it duly commenced.  Four days' later, the results are contained in this listing.

Bertie's Under-belly in White Fleece

Consequently, we are now able to offer either a Whale or a Dolphin - without too much difficulty! Your choice need not be restricted to it being a Blue Whale/Dolphin. The listing gives you several options that we are suggesting could be used for an Ornamental Feature Toy to match any decorative ideas you may be planning.    Please let us know when ordering via the Etsy Check Out site which option is your preference.  (Or you can also convo us and/or email us at  Isobel will be delighted to see what she can do to meet your needs.

Bertie's tail looks more comfortable when it is draped over something!

Obviously, this special Custom Order is a one-off for MrsPA but she has no objection to Bertie becoming part of the COLDHAMCUDDLIES collection of Ornamental Toys.  Despite his size, Hermy as MrsPA has decided he will be called when presented to her husband for Christmas this year, can be replicated quite easily.  (The Whale sighting mentioned earlier in this post took place off the coastal Town of Hermanus, Republic of South Africa!)

The main component, once the fabric is measured and sewn is the need for a good supply of the usual polyester stuffing with which all COLDHAMCUDDLIES Ornamental Toys are created.  This complies with all international standards for safety and in this case, a 1.1 kilo (2.2 pounds) bag has almost all been used to create this Giant Feature Ornament.  He just fits on a normal pillow - with his tale gracefully draping over the side of it!  We have a reliable source for this important part of a Whale Ornamental Feature Toy - at very competitive prices too!

I'm actually standing behind Bertie in this picture - just shows how high he is!!

Bertie is totally hand-stitched (taking 2 evenings of sewing) and basically consists of  two main seams - with a gusset forming the underside of his body.  His body is  blue fleece, with his under-belly made with a white fleece of similar quality.  He has purpose made felt eyes individually crafted and sewn on either side of the Whale body.  (They are not as "sexy" as those suggested for the Dolphin - for which we do have a pattern!)   Small white flecks are embroidered on each eye to provide a life-like "look" to the Toy's overall look.  Like all COLDHAMCUDDLIES Ornamental Toys, Bertie Whale is made in totally animal free and smoke free environments.

Bertie behind me, as I sit in my usual spot on the Bed!

Hermy was hand-delivered, travelling by public transport to meet his new owner - raising interest among fellow 'bus travellers enroute in the process.  (It was both too early in the day, (c.0830 GMT) and typical of the commuting public that NO ONE actually commented!! MrsPA was delighted to meet Bertie (Hermy to her, of course) and they left for their new future together earlier this week-end.

As with all big packages, Shipping could be quite expensive and would have to be either by Royal Mail Parcel Force and/or a Courier service.    Because of  his specific measurements, each package would need an individual shipping quote, so the one we have put into our Shop Listing is purely for listing purposes only.   There are several locally-based companies who can be approached for a definite quotation (serving all global destinations!) - thus prices quoted for this listing are approximate only.  As a custom order, these will be confirmed at the time the order is processed by the Etsy Check Out system and no work will begin on any order/commission until an exact shipping cost has been provided - and accepted by the Buyer(s).

Bertie Whale is one of the biggest Ornamental Toys we've ever handled in our Shop.   Previous visitors have included a Giant Koala - who was adopted elsewhere in the UK, after Isobel had been "scammed" into enlarging our  Big Koala Toy -
into a truly Giant Koala Ornamental Toy - who became my Friend Colin the Koala (shown below)

We've also handled a Dinosaur called Dino - who needed a bit of "feeding up" after some heavy cuddling from his Forever Friend, as well as a Giant Dragon - whose stuffing had also "relaxed" after some time in the "real world".  This is a normal occurrence when polyester (or other materials) are used to stuff Toys of any size - and is not a fault as such.  That's where our Stuffed Toy Animal Restoration Clinic's services come in handy!!  Patients are always welcome!  ( 

After a luke-warm bath in soap suds, and a complete re-stuff (using nearly 6 lbs (c.3 kilos) of polyester fibre, Count Rusty now looks like this - a true leader of the Morrell Bear clan
Count Rusty de Ben - Biggest Member of the Morrell Family Bear Collection and a 4 ft 6 inch Ornament!

They all took somewhat longer to cope with while they stayed with us and their stories have appeared in earlier posts in this Blog!

I'm closing now for this week's edition - and am not sure when I'll be back.  Isobel is spending Christmas with daughter, Philippa, and is due to be away for about a week (beginning later this week) and there are plans afoot for her to have a break from toy-making (there are already 4 Orders on the Book for the New Year!).  Thanks to the Slimming World attendance she's undertaken since July, she's reached Christmas 2017 27.5 lbs lighter than she was at the start.  Her target for the period was 28 lbs - so a pesky half-pound has just blocked that achievement!!  However, it does mean that her wardrobe has taken a "hit", and Isobel is debating whether to take some of her stash of accumulated fabrics with her to make some much-needed replenishments.  Trousers that fit are fast becoming a necessity, and she's hoping she can "borrow" a pattern from daughter Clare before she is driven to Buckinghamshire (as well as back again!) for the Christmas period. It's the prospect of the lifts both ways that is causing these thoughts to emerge!!  (Easier to manage when not having to travel by train, and cross London - the normal route on these occasions.)

Both Isobel and I want to wish all our Friends, Followers, and Readers the very Happiest of Christmas Festivities - and Everything you Wish Yourselves for 2018.  (Which is probably when we'll meet again!).

Your Friend,

Cy Bear