Bing Bears – Gebruder Bing Teddy Bear, History, Information

Gebruder Bing was founded in Nuremberg in 1865 by Ignaz and Adolf Bing to make tin and kitchenware and later enameled and tin toys around 1890. They made their first bears in 1907 at the height of the teddy bear boom. The first Bing bears had a metal arrow in the ear with the initials G.B.N. set in a diamond. Steiff started litigation against Bing for using the tag in the ear, so Bing put a metal button underneath the arm instead. Steiff still objected to the word “button”, so Bing instead used “G.B.N. label under the arm.” Around 1920, Bing stopped using the tag and replaced it with a metal label attached to the right arm.

Bing is best known for it’s mechanical bears introduced around 1910, very hard to find nowadays. Early Bing teddy bears resembled Steiff bears but changed it’s design around 1920, using a longer snout with distinctive stitching on the muzzle and a very wide smile. Bing stopped producing bears in 1932 but still remain a favorite among collectors.

Popular Bing Bears:
1908 mechanical bears with a wide head, small ears, long arms and body, large oval feet, claw stitching, felt paw pads

1915 16 inch bears had long, white, silky, mohair coat, light colored nose, claw stitching

Bing tumbling bears, bears on skis, bears on roller skates

Typical Features Of Bing Bears
Round head
Small ears set on the side of the head
Boot button eyes
Long arms, curved paws
High quality mohair
Vertical stitching on bears over 16 inches, horizontal stitching on smaller bears
Short unshaven muzzle
Small facial features
G.B.N. engraved metal button under the arm until 1910

Wide head
Slightly larger ears set on side of head
Glass eyes
Long arms, curved paws
Quality mohair
Vertical stitching on bears over 16 inches, horizontal stitching on smaller bears
Longer muzzle
Metal tag under the arm, metal label on the body or a limb

Very large head
Very large ears set on top of head
Orange glass eyes
Shorter arms, curved paws
Very long silky mohair
Distinctive nose stitching on bears over 16 inches with a double stitch that runs under the middle stitches and frames the nose
Very long shaved muzzle
Very long smile extending the width of the muzzle
Orange metal button with B.W. painted in black attached to right arm

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