It’s time to talk to Daddy. We’ve just released our collaborative collection with DaddyBears, the London based artist who creates alternative teddy bears from soft and silky fabrics, made to recreate that childhood sense of comfort and security that came from your favourite cuddly toy. Playing with nostalgia, and the artists’ exploration of fantasies and the surreal - check out DaddyBears’ mood board on IG @daddybearsmood - we worked with the artist to create a collection of thirteen pieces, made up of satin fabrics, quilted textures and comfy shapes. Whilst photographer Jakub Gessler shot the collection in the bedroom we built in our North London studio, we sat down for a chat with DaddyBears’ creator and her tiny bestie, Pickle the Chihuahua, to talk about how she got started creating these perfect plushies, where she draws inspiration from, and which pieces from the collection she’s most excited to wear.
MEET THE ARTIST: DADDY BEARS
Hey, can we call you Daddy?
Yes, please do.
How are you doing? How does it feel to be on the set of the DaddyBears x Lazy Oaf campaign shoot?
It feels very exciting and surreal that this is actually happening, and that we’re here for this. We’ve been planning it for almost a year. Maybe even longer…?
The pieces are all inspired by your artworks. How would you describe them; what they are, what they feel like, physically & emotionally?
Physically and emotionally, they’re squishy and soft and cute. And I like that I feel like they can make people happy, and make them feel soft also.
How long have you been creating these gorgeous plushy alien creatures?
I’ve been making them for four or five years I think. Originally not full time, but now I am able to create full time.
What was it that made you want to create this type of art in particular?
It was more what I didn’t want to make. I didn’t want to make - my background is originally in fashion - and I didn’t want to do anything that was for the body. I wanted to create things that can be held and that are separate from the body, but also something that was for more than just looking at.
Where do you get inspiration from when you’re designing your bears?
Things that already exist. Animals, but also a lot of the inspiration comes from bedrooms and cosy things. Homeware, and wanting to be in more of a fantasy state, rather than reality.
Do you have a favourite one that you snuggle with at night?
No. I keep them very separate from myself. I don’t have any of them in my house, because I think if I cross that barrier and really enjoy them, then it would make me too sad to sell them.
What do you hope your art gives to those who enjoy it? Are there any particular feelings or sensations that you want to provoke?
I would hope that it sparks joy. As much as that is cringe… I just want them to make people feel good and for them to bring up those childhood, nostalgic feelings. Almost letting them feel small again.
If you don’t turn to your Bear when you’re feeling shit, what is your self-comfort routine? How do you make yourself feel better on crappy days?
I watch like a very dark horror movie, or like the worst true crime, so I don’t have to think about my problems.
You studied menswear at uni, right? So this isn’t the first time you’ve dipped your toe into the clothing pool?
Yeah. Though since uni I did back away from fashion, so it’s nice to get back into it with you guys.
What were the main things you wanted to come across in the collection?
I wanted it to feel very dreamy and cute, which I feel like it does. It gives sleepwear for the streets kind of vibe. I think everything that I wanted has really come across.
How was it, working with the Lazy Oaf team?
Lovely. It’s been very lovely. I like that it’s a very female based team - everyone was so welcoming.
Do you have a favourite piece from the collection?
Probably the big jumper because it looks so cosy and cute and I feel like I could wear it with anything. Also love the little handbag. And the hat… I like it all.
Finally, if people want to purchase their very own DaddyBear, how can they get one?
They can get in touch through my website, or Instagram @daddybearsxc.