Category Archives: A day in my life

Highlighting a wonderful keepsake business ~ Grin and Bear It Keepsakes

Posted under A day in my lifeBlogCustomer FeedbackOther crafty stuff I love! on 2020-07-05 12:43:21

Dawn Fleischman started sewing Funky Friends Patterns 7 years ago! Dawn was inspired to start her business Grin and Bear It Keepsakes when she started getting requests for Memory Bears and made a few for family.

Here is a photo of Dawn with
the very first Funky Friends she sewed.

Dawn - Grin and Bear It Keepsakes Memory Bears & More

She says it kind of snowballed after that. At last count, Dawn has created well over 600 Memory Bears, Funky Friends critters and  Memory Pillows over the last 17 years. This is one of my favourite toys sewn by Dawn – Calico Bear. 

What a beary
cheerful smile!  

Calico Bear nemory bear pattern - sewn by DawnB


Dawn says shes loves using Funky Friends Factory patterns to sew lovely keepsakes because of the the smiles, hugs and sometimes happy tears they bring ~to young and old alike!  She made this colourful version of Kitty Kate for a little girl who visited her and wanted to see her sewing room. She was so excited when Dawn showed the many FFF patterns she has.

She picked Kitty Kate
and this beautiful minky.

Kitty Kate Pattern sewn by Dawn B

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FREE Unicorn Keepsake Pattern to sew in Lockdown!🦄

Posted under A day in my lifeBlogCompetitions & GiveawaysFFF NewsNEW Softie Patterns on 2020-05-22 13:51:45

The FREE Unicorn Keepsake Pattern ADD-ON for my Calico Bear is ready!!!!!!!! Woohoo!!! 😁

I’m sorry it’s taken ages –
I’ve been
a bit sick…




Turns out I’ve got a severe sinusitis – not covid, THANK GOODNESS!

It’s just been hard to get stuff done when it feels like my head’s on fire! BUT I’m really excited to share this memory bear pattern ADD-ON with you, so you can sew lovely keepsakes, while we’re in lockdown!

I’m LOVING how she turned out!!!!

FREE Calico UNICORN Keepsake Pattern ADD-ON

HOW do you get the UNICORN Keepsake Pattern ADD-ON for FREE?

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MAKER OF THE MONTH – playing catch up!!!! :D

Posted under A day in my lifeBlogCompetitions & GiveawaysInspirations on 2020-05-06 17:38:33

I got a bit behind choosing our MAKER of the MONTH during the Covid Crisis! So many gorgeous feedback photos are being posted on my Facebook page – it’s becoming harder and harder to choose my favorite for the Funky Friends Factory MAKER OF THE MONTH!

Lets catch up with our
latest winners!

Our 1st winner…

Maaike Pouwels helped her daughters sew lovely keepsakes as a distraction – to take their minds off things during lockdown. LOOK how happy they are with their versions of the Ellie ELEPHANT Sewing Pattern and Patch Pussy CAT Sewing Pattern! 😀 

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Free memory bear pattern feedback and another free pattern announcement!!!

Posted under A day in my lifeBlogCharityCompetitions & GiveawaysFFF News on 2020-04-25 17:19:50

I have been inspired by the heartfelt messages I received in response to my offering my Calico Bear for FREE to anyone who wants to sew a memory bear during lockdown. Lots of people told me they are going to use the free memory bear pattern to sew lovely keepsakes with their “kiddos” and grand kids. Lots of people said they’d use the pattern to sew gifts for their local first-responders and front-line healthcare workers and sadly some people are making bereavement bears too. LOTS of people said they’d be making sewing toys for charity – like Dorothy who’s husband was lucky to have caught the virus and S-U-R-V-I-V-E-D!!!!!  🙂

Thank you so much for the free bear pattern. My husband was in hospital for 2 weeks and part of the time ICU. He was very sick from COVID 19. He survived and is home now with me and I am so thankful! Dorothy J Erwin

I know that sewing takes MY mind off the crisis so it’s been lovely to be able to share this pattern with the crafting community that has supported me over the years… I was so inspired by the emails I received, I’ve been working on another pattern hack for Calico Bear….

Can you guess what it is????

(There’s a clue in the baby clothes I’m using to make this keepsake…)

Unicorn Pattern Hack


AND because it’s not a whole new pattern – just a small adaptation of my existing Calico Bear Pattern – I am going to give you this Pattern Hack Pattern for FREE!!!!  🙂

Any guesses?

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Free pattern for a Memory Bear!

Posted under A day in my lifeBlogCompetitions & GiveawaysFFF NewsUncategorized on 2020-04-22 12:43:04

I realized it’s been 4 weeks that I’ve been in isolation since I flew back from Brisbane last month…. and the world has completely changed since then in ways I could never have imagined! I think a lot of us are battling to come to grips with our new reality.

PIC: Calico bear sewn by Shirls Smith.


I’ve been battling a roller-coaster of emotions myself as the Covid-crisis has exploded around the world…. from disbelief to shock and horror and despair and depression, thinking of so many people dying and the ONLY thing you can do to help is try NOT to get infected yourself!?

What has really lifted MY spirits has been seeing the wonderful ways people are reaching out to others even when we can’t be together, finding ways to help each other stay positive AND busy while we all wait to see what happens…

I want to do my bit
to add some cheer and

Calico Bear has been one of my most popular patterns for making a Memory Bear and I thought this would be the most universally popular pattern…. so I am giving away my Calico Bear Pattern to anyone who wants to make a memory bear during this lock down so we can sew lovely keepsakes to keep us SANE!

A FREE memory bear pattern 2020


If you’ve ever wanted to
try making a memory bear ~
now is the time!

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