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October 9, 2015 / 26 Tishri, 5776
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Build A Bear


My son can never get enough of his cozy teddy bears. So, for his birthday party last year we created an “in house” build-a-bear factory. I purchased inexpensive bears at a dollar store, opened the back seam, and unstuffed the bear. When the children arrived at the party, displayed on a table were the bear “skins,” ribbons, bags of stuffing, and foam shaped hearts. The children chose their materials and the building began! To round out the party – Teddy Bear Cupcakes!

This is a great activity for anytime the children are home from school – mid-winter vacation, snow days – so it pays to be prepared.

Preparation For Activity:

1) Using a seam ripper, carefully undo the stitching in the back of the bear.

2) Remove stuffing (it’s a good idea to put the stuffing of each bear in a separate Ziploc bag).

3) Create a sample “birth certificate” and make copies.


1) Children stuff the bears – making sure the stuffing gets to the arms and legs.

2) Then they insert a foam shaped heart (optional).

3) Sew bear back up. As this is something the children can’t do, try to have an extra adult around to either help with the sewing or keep the children occupied with a simple activity. For example, have them color the birth certificate.

4) Tie the ribbon into a bow or create a necktie around the bear’s neck.

5) Have each child “name” his or her teddy bear and write the “name” on the “birth certificate.”

Teddy Bear Fondant Cupcakes

Image 1


White or chocolate cupcakes Wilton fondant in a variety of colors Sugar candy eyes (can be found in a baking supplies store) Round shaped cookie cutter Karo syrup


1. Choose your fondant colors.

2. Roll out fondant and using the cookie cutter or a glass, cut out a circle that will cover the top of your cupcake.

Image 2

3. Place cut out circle on top of cupcake. (image 1)

4. Now, to create the bear you will need to roll fondant out into various size balls: 1 ball for the body – a little bigger than a cherry tomato; 1 ball for the head – a little smaller then a cherry tomato; 4 balls for the arms and feet – each one about the size of a pea; 2 balls for the ears – about the size of ½ a pea; 1 ball for the nose – about the size of ½ a pea, flattened; 1 ball for the center of the nose – about the size of ¼ a pea, flattened

5. Use a toothpick to dab a very small amount of karo syrup (the glue) and put the body together. (see images 2-4)

Image 3

6. “Glue” on the sugar candy “eyes.”

7. For the bowtie, use a knife to cut a tiny rectangle (1/4″x1/2″) of fondant and squeeze it slightly in the center. Then glue the bowtie on the bear.

8. Glue the bear to the top of the cupcake.


Image 4

About the Author: Esther Ottensoser is a food stylist whose work is featured in various publications. Whether it be party planning, marketing a product, party favors, demos or crafts, Esther takes the simple basic everyday products and transforms them into that extraordinary presentation. Esther lives in Lakewood, NJ and can be contacted via e-mail at estheroinfo@gmail.com.

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