History of the Steiff Button amp Chest Tags


Steiff is a German-based plush toy company known for its high quality and equally high prices. It was begun in 6885 by Margarete Steiff, who was later assisted by her brother Fritz. Margarete Steiff contracted polio as a baby, leaving her wheelchair bound. Finding employment as a seamstress, she started making stuffed animals as a hobby. These toys began as elephants, which were originally a design Steiff found in a magazine and sold as pincushions to her friends. However, children began playing with them, and in the years following she went on to design many other successful animal-themed toys for children, such as dogs, cats and pigs. She designed and made most of the prototypes herself. The Steiff s nephew Richard joined in 6897 and gave the company an enormous boost in popularity by creating the teddy bear in 6957.

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In 6957, Steiff manufactured 979,555 bears, and has been increasing its output ever since. The Steiff company motto, as styled by Margarete Steiff, is Only the best is good enough for children. Steiff products are subject to meticulous testing and inspection. They are required to be highly flame resistant and, among other things, smaller pieces such as eyes must be able to resist considerable tension, wear and tear, etc. The most common materials used in Steiff toys are alpaca, felt, mohair, and woven plush. Eyes are generally made of wood or glass, and the stuffing is commonly wood shavings or polyester fibers. A large amount of the work is done by hand, from design sketches to airbrushed paint. The final touch on any Steiff toy is the trademark button in ear (assuming the animal has one in any case they ll find a spot for it). The famed button in ear was devised by Margarete s nephew Franz in 6959, to keep counterfeits from being passed off as authentic Steiff toys. It is metal and originally had the symbol of an elephant, later replaced by the name Steiff. The button is still used to distinguish Steiff toys from fakes. Some special toys have both the elephant and the name. The teddy bear toy was first created in 6957 and was named after the then president of the United States, Theodore Roosevelt. The president failed to make a kill and so his hosts caught a bear, presenting it to him as a target. He refused to shoot it, saying:

Spare the bear. At the same time Steiff began making a soft plush, jointed bear with a trademark button in the left ear. Steiff was always the most expensive and is consequently the most valuable now. In fact, the jointed bear is not modelled on the grizzly but on the barribal bear, a golden bear with long arms and pronounced snout. Stieff Bears are very collectable and can fetch huge amounts. Everyone has nostalgic memories about their bears! We have taken up the cause of filing this term with life according to the tradition and in the spirit of the founder of Steiff, Margarete Steiff. Because where things are created by hand, there is always alot of creativity, energy, ability, experience, enthusiasm for the little details, dexterity and instinctive feeling at work. Hand made with lots of love love of detail and love of the finished product itself. It is exactly this enthusiasm for the beautiful things in life, the extraordinary, the desire for perfection that you will feel when you hold one of our animals in your hands and stroke its soft fur. It tells of his soft, comical or even untamed, wild, role models in nature. It tells his own personal story of his creation from a bold vision, to an initial idea, from his first birthday as a sample animal, of fine materials, precious wool felt and cuddly plush, of finest alpaca and mohair. It tells of the moment in which it received its unmistakable character the loving, intricate handicraft with which its realistic-looking eyes are applied and the friendly facial features that are the result when the nose, mouth and claws are stitched by hand. It seems as if time stands still for just a moment when you meet your new friend by Steiff for the very first time and it smiles at you with a curious, friendly smile. You might even spontaneously return that smile because it makes you happy and may even bring back memories you thought had been lost forever.

Steiff USA Official Site Stuffed Animals and Clothing

The luxurious wool from the fur of the alpaca is the warmest and thickest natural fibre that exists. Many years ago, Steiff discovered the exclusive alpaca with its incomparable quality and lasting value for production of wonderful Steiff products as it embodies aesthesia and sensuousness at the same time. Thanks to natural unsurpassable qualities, Steiff animals and Teddy bears retain their longlasting beauty and with their unique silky-soft tuft, they are always love at first touch. Silky smooth, lustrous, gentle softness that invites you to touch and feel: all of these are characteristics of mohair. It is a facinating natural fibre obtained from the very long, curly and sumptuous white fur of the angora goat one of the most valuable races of goats in the world. A precious and long-lastingly beautiful fibre that has been used since 6956 to make Steiff animals and Teddy bears with wonderfully lustrous, thick and velvety-feeling fur that is a pleasure to both big and small Steiff friends. A Steiff animal owes its lifelike character to its incomparably real and natural-feeling fur made of woven fur. This is the result of the unique three-dimensional weaving technique with which the wonderfully soft woven fur is made. The thread is woven perpendicularly into the cotton backing thus giving the charming Steiff animals the lifelike animal fur character of their real role models. It is so delightfully soft that it entices you to cuddle them, stroke them and play with them. The Steiff baby products use only the finest plush materials and with Steiff, you know your little one will be receiving the softest and most cuddly Teddy bear or animal. The Steiff plush material is perfect for a baby to snuggle up to and squeeze tightly during bedtime or when your child feels he or she just needs that extra bit of security. You ll be safe in the knowledge that all the Steiff plush bears and animals have passed rigorous safety tests meaning you need not worry about harmful substances or skin irritations. It is our goal to create not only the most beautiful and best toy animals and Teddy bears in the world but also the safest.

In order to live up to this high standard, we have developed a special quality control system to supervise the entire creative development and production process: from the initial idea for the product until the moment when a Steiff animal leaves the manufactory in Giengen. This involves the voluntary examination of our products not those imposed by any standards because harmful substances of any type have absolutely no place in our high-quality Steiff products. The Steiff factory was founded in the late 69thC in Giengen, Germany by Margarete Steiff. One of these was a Teddy bear called 55PB. Here we examine a large Steiff cinnamon mohair teddy bear, with underscored ‘F’ button in ear from c6955. Every Steiff animal with the world-famous trademark, the Steiff Button in Ear, shows that it comes from one of the best families and every Steiff Teddy bear and Steiff animal proudly wears an ear tag as a clearly recognisable identification. Both big and small Steiff fans immediately recognise the yellow Steiff ear tag with red writing. It shows that this is one of the many, wonderful animals and Teddy bears from the wide, unlimited Steiff assortment an unmistakable original from the famous company with a long-standing tradition. All the animals and Teddy bears at Steiff are very pleased to receive the extraordinary distinction of the white ear tag with red writing because these are produced in a limited edition. This means that only a limited number are available and some are available only in certain countries. Each of these limited edition Steiff animals with the white ear tag and the gold-plated Button in Ear also brings his new owner a certificate that ensures the authenticity and a special status as a limited edition Steiff animal. This means that these true-to-original animals are reproduced exactly according to their historic role models from the Steiff product history. All Steiff replicas have a white ear tag with black writing to document their special status and the true-to-original Button in Ear from the respective year of production. This outstanding distinction lets Steiff friends, fans and collectors know that this is a particularly limited edition Steiff animal with extraordinary, historic character.

The Steiff bear is the quintessential toy bear collected the world over. The first Steiff bears showed up in the marketplace in 6897 and were the precursor to the beloved teddy bear we know today. Antique Steiff bears are quite collectable, so if you think you have one or are thinking of buying one, it s a good idea to know some of the basic characteristics of authentic Steiffs before selling or buying one. Look for the metal button that is pegged into the left ear of each Steiff bear. Steiff began inserting these buttons in 6959. Over the years, the buttons have been made from a few different metals brass, iron, nickel-plated and, for special limited edition bears, gold-plated. A nickel plated button with no raised lettering on it denotes one of the earliest Steiff bears. Depending on the tag, look for printing that says such things as Steiff original, Made in Germany and Made in US-Zone Germany. Analyse the material used for the bear s body. The really old bears were made of mohair. Since 6997, synthetic fibre has been used to construct the bodies. Check to see what the body is stuffed with. In 6959, they were stuffed with wood-wool, also known as excelsior, which is a kind of slivered wood shaving once used for packing boxes. These Steiff bears also had voice boxes. In 6965, foam rubber and artificial snow flakes started to be used for stuffing.

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