10 Best Custom Teddy Bears
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Searching For The Best Custom Teddy Bears
What’s more romantic on Valentine’s Day; flowers that will wilt in three weeks, or a teddy bear with your significant other’s name embroidered on its feet? Yeah, the answer is pretty obvious. What isn’t obvious is where you should look to find a customized teddy bear.
Thankfully, I’ve compiled a list of brands for lovebirds, parents, and business owners who want the best custom teddy bears. Keep reading to discover which companies you should turn to if you want giant teddy bears, bears wearing your face on a t-shirt, or handouts at your business.
The 10 Best Custom Teddy Bears
There’s no way I could write about the best custom teddy bears without including Build-A-Bear. The American company dominates the market to the point that Build-A-Bear has become a shorthand for custom teddy bears in the way that Kleenex became the common term for facial tissue.
Their fame isn’t unearned: they offer in-store and online bear building, have a plethora of customization options, and were one of the first brands in the custom teddy bear business.
Build-A-Bear established themselves in 1997 after Maxine Clark conducted tests with children. She ran multiple business prototypes through a panel of kids and asked them which they preferred. Customizable teddy bears won by a landslide. The vision was a success as today Builld-A-Bear has more than 500 retail locations and has helped children create more than 200 million teddy bears.
Their brand value opened doors to work with some of the most significant media properties on the planet. You can pick up plush versions of Pikachu, Baby Yoda, Stitch, Dobby, Winnie the Pooh, and more.
These collaborations demonstrate Build-A-Bear’s crossover value as they also sell merchandise from The Office, Doctor Who, and Friends. In short, Build-A-Bear is just as popular with adults as they are with children.
The other main appeal of build-a-bear (besides the high material quality) is the sheer variety of plush toys they offer. If bears aren’t your jam, then don’t worry. You can select from one of the following animals:
The base model for each starts at $24, with clothing and accessories costing extra.
Customers say: “Fantastic magical experience! If you’re buying a gift, it’s better to take the kid (or big kid) into the store. I love how they make the children feel magical, and all the finishing touches on the bear! The birth cert their lost and found service! The clothes and the little bear toys, it’s Fab!“
- Plenty of animals to choose from
- Ships to the US, Canada, and Mexico
- Offers branded teddy bears from Super Mario, Marvel, and Frozen
- Multiple locations so it’s easy to find a store
2. Your Surprise
So, the next entry in my list of the best custom teddy bear brands doesn’t just make teddy bears. Your Surprise, the Netherlands-based brand, can turn nearly anything into a customized gift. Their website proclaims that they offer more than 2,500 options, but we only care about one, their teddy bears.
Your Surprise offers a more personal touch than Build-A-Bear in that you can inscribe custom words, photos, and even your company’s logo. They allow you to make a bear that’s 100% your own because you can literally attach a photo of yourself to the bear.
Their main custom teddy bears are the Your Surprise Personalised Teddy Bear – XL ($70), the Your Surprise Love Bear with Name ($47), and the Your Surprise Benjamin Bear ($23). Your Surprise may be the best custom teddy bear brand for significant others because their bears have classic aesthetics. As such, they’re not too flashy or exciting; they’re a bit more dignified.
Customers say: “Well worth the wait! I have one excited girlfriend, she loves it, from the box it came in it looked small until i took it out. It is huge. One happy girlfriend. So soft and cuddly and perfect”
- You can add your name, photo, or logos to their teddy bears
- Bears come in multiple sizes
- Offers personalized aprons, wine glasses, suitcases, and more
3. Giant Teddy
What’s better than a customized teddy bear? How about a teddy bear so large that a grizzly bear could mistake it for its kin? That’s what Giant Teddy delivers. Their bears are often larger than most humans. They’re ideal for comfort and coziness, sometimes acting as a surrogate pillow. If you need some warmth in your life, I’d recommend these bears.
The price range of Giant Teddy bears is between $180 and $240. Obviously, that’s higher than some of the other best custom teddy bear brands. However, this makes sense when you remember that you’re buying a giant teddy bear.
Most of these bears are around 6’ tall and some even run as large as Shaq. The price difference melts away when you realize that.
Customers say: “This bear is absolutely incredible. The fur is very soft and it is very obvious that the bear in its entirety was made with high quality materials. It made for a wonderful gift for my mom for her birthday! This size in particular is great for giving big, comforting bear hugs. If we had more room, we would buy more!! I highly recommend.”
- Customizable apparel for the bears
- Plenty of animal options like elephants, koalas, and hippos
- Free shipping and personalized cards to orders within the lower 48 United States
4. Vermont Teddy Bear
Of all the brands included so far, Vermont Teddy Bear may make the softest bears. That’s to be expected. Vermont Teddy Bear has stuck to the same principles over their 40+ years of business, designing and crafting all their bears by hand. This extensive process all but guarantees their teddy bears should last a lifetime.
As one could expect, that also means Vermont Teddy Bears cost more than other bears. For instance, the Vermont Teddy Bear 15″ Hoodie Footie Bear, Pink, arguably the most popular bear on their website, costs $90. You’re paying top dollar for top-quality, so the trade-off may be worthwhile.
You can customize the fur and eye color of most Vermont Teddy Bears. However, this doesn’t apply to their larger bears, which can measure up to 6’ tall. So while Vermont’s personalization is as robust as other companies, their craftsmanship is leagues above the rest.
Customers say: “I absolutely love the Vermont Teddy Bear 15″ Hoodie Footie Bear. My granddaughter is going to be so happy when she gets this bear at Christmas. The quality is excellent and I love that you can personalize the gift – matching eye color with the child and that you are able to choose the color of the hooded onesie that the bears comes with.”
- All bears are designed by hand
- Giant-sized teddy bears are available
- Unique animals like unicorns and flamingos offered
- 15% discount for new Vermont Teddy Bear newsletter subscribers
5. Bobo’s Toys
When you think of the best custom teddy bears, sustainability may not be the first thing that comes to mind. However, Bobo’s Toys was already thinking about that. They’ve put multiple practices in place to become more eco-friendly, including the following:
- Transitioning to 100% recycled polyester in their toys
- Using R-PET fabric and filler suppliers alongside recycled materials
- Packaging made from 100% recycled plastic
The Chinese company has been around since 2014. Since then, they’ve honed their customization process to the point that they can turn customers’ sketches into teddy bears.
Once buyers submit an image to Bobo’s Toys, they’ll receive a quote in around 12 hours. Bobo’s Toys’ professional designers turn these sketches into three-dimensional plush friends in fabrics like velvet, spandex, silk-like, and more.
- Creates customized teddy bears from customer designs
- Sustainable practices
- Bears are available in multiple materials
One aspect 800Bear holds over the other best custom teddy bear brands is that their customizations are always free.
The Chicago-based company specializes in personalized gifts as they believe they’re the best way to show someone you’re thinking about them. Following that logic, they don’t lock any customizations behind a paywall. You can change the toy’s color, what the text on the toy says, and even the text’s color.
800Bear is also one of the most affordable brands here. For example, their 800Bear Easter Bunny – 9″ costs $26.
Their low prices make them an excellent all-occasion brand as you can personalize their bears for birthdays, romance, get well soon wishes, and more. All their products measure between 9” and 15” so they’re cute little trinkets.
Customers say: “Very good teddy bear, good personalization of the product, exactly what i expected.”
- All customizations are free
- Occasion-based and seasonal teddy bears
- One of the least expensive custom teddy bear manufacturers
- A+ rating on the Better Business Bureau
4Imprint is the next best custom teddy bear producer that makes more than teddy bears. They can imprint nearly anything on nearly everything, including shirts, notebooks, and mugs, though we’re not here to discuss those. Let’s get to the bears.
4Imprint’s teddy bears have to be purchased in bulk. You can’t just buy one. While this may seem a tad strange, it allows 4Imprint to set themselves apart from other custom teddy bear brands.
Their bears are better for larger operations involving many people. Think about teachers preparing Christmas gifts for their class or marketers going to a road show who need to prepare handouts that stand out. That’s where 4Imprint shines.
The bears themselves are quite cheap. A single 4Imprint Big Paw Bear – Brown costs just under $10, though you need to purchase at least 25. Once again, that’s not much of an issue if you plan to distribute them to multiple people. Plus, 4Imprint has speedy turnaround times and you can even request free samples.
Customers say: “I was very pleased with the Big Paw Bear purchase and found them to be of very good quality. The children I gave them to as Christmas gifts loved them!”
- Bulk supplier of customized goods
- Free samples available
- Ships in as little as 3 business days
8. My Plush Buddy
We all had an imaginary best friend growing up, but wouldn’t it be great if we could turn them into a tangible object? My Plush Buddy can. The Indian company can turn people, mascots, and (of course) teddy bears into loveable plush toys in as little as five weeks.
They transform drawings and designs submitted by customers. This grants users an unlimited amount of customizability because they can design their own toys.
Their stuffed animal toys cost $125 to produce, which isn’t the cheapest option in this list. However, given that you’re turning your imagination into reality, I think it’s worth the cost. Their custom teddy bears come in a standard 16”, but you can upgrade them to 25” if you want extra cuddles.
Customers say: “I ordered the Buddy Selfie, and I (and the receiver of the gift) are very satisfied with my purchase. It is a bit pricey, but I guess that’s warranted for a custom plushie, and their service made up for it too. I made SEVERAL alterations until I was satisfied, and they were prompt in communication, patient, and attentive to my needs.”
- Transfer drawings into teddy bears
- Can turn photographs of people into plush toys
- Unlimited customization options
- Free international shipping
9. Big Plush
I’ve spoken about customization options and giant teddy bears, but no company combines those concepts like Big Plush. Working out of New Jersey, they use American-made materials to give customers their own oversized plush best friend.
Big Plush’s customization options are unique. They include satin neck ribbons, bespoke dress shirts, personalized messages on t-shirts, face masks, zipper pockets, and mustaches. In short, Big Plush’s teddy bears look unlike any other teddy bears.
Customers say: “Recently I ordered several large Plush Teddy bears from Big Plush, LLC. They where for a birthday party and turned out wonderful! All their products are made with quality and care. The bears will last the birthday girl years to come. Another great thing is that they can make custom orders and turn around time can be very fast! I will definitely order from Big Plush again in the future.”
- Plenty of intriguing customization options
- Bears are 5’ tall
- Only creates with American materials
10. Custom Plush
The final entry in my list of the best custom teddy bear producers is Custom Plush, a business-focused toy manufacturer. They create physical plush toys of your company’s mascot. They’re a subdivision of the Beverly Hills Toy Company and have brought characters from Sesame Street, Walt Disney, and Chuck E. Cheese to life.
Since you have to order at least 25 plush toys with any purchase, it’s apparent they’re commercial-oriented. They’ll provide you with a quote and a prototype, allowing you to make changes before they print a mini army of your creations.
That being said, their toys have a ton of character and vibrant colors.
Customers say: “Our Soapy Joe plush toy that Beverly Hills Teddy Bear—CustomPlush.com created is a HUGE hit! It really has brought our brand to life and they were incredibly considerate in helping us to create him. The plush is very well made, and customer service from BH Teddy Bear was the best! We are so happy with the experience and our Soapy Joe Plush Toy.”
- Custom plush toys for businesses
- Great resume with work under large brands
- Bold and expressive toys
How To Shop For The Best Custom Teddy Bear
Now that you know which brands I consider to be among the best custom teddy bear producers, it’s time for you to ask yourself “what do I value in a company?” I’ve listed some considerations to ease your decision-making.
Some brands offer one or two customizations, whereas others allow shoppers to design their teddy bears from scratch. The latter is better for creative individuals, whereas the former is better for people who want to work off a defined framework.
Is a certain brand available in your area? Does it have a retail location close to you where you can discuss the creation process in person? Does a company ship to your country? Ask yourself these questions before committing to one brand.
Bobo’s Toys are easily the most sustainable brand on this list, but it’s worth considering how other companies are trying to reduce their carbon footprint. Look into their shipping policies and what type of packaging they use.
Although everybody loves teddy bears, not all teddy bears are created for everyone. I’ve made sure to include some of the best commercial teddy bear producers alongside those with slower and more personal processes as they have different intended audiences.
The price of a teddy bear is a reflection of the concepts I just listed. It’s a way to check if you’ll receive a worthwhile teddy bear or if the company is cutting corners.
What brand of teddy bear is best?
The brands I included in this list of the best custom teddy bear producers are here for a reason. However, if you don’t care about customization, customers consider Steiff Bears and Aurora World as the cream of the crop.
Do adults buy Build-a-bear?
Adults do, in fact, buy Build-A-Bear. The brand has added adult-friendly properties to their catalog to retain their older audience.
Does cuddling with stuffed animals help?
Cuddling with stuffed animals can help people relax and feel secure. It’s a safety mechanism. Plus, if you relax enough, it can help you fall asleep.
Can you put custom teddy bears in the wash?
Spot cleaning is the way to go with custom teddy bears. However, if your bear needs more care than that, follow Build-A-Bear’s advice. Put your bear in a pillowcase, wash it in the washing machine in cold water in a gentle cycle, and let it air dry.
Custom teddy bears are a great gift to yourself and others. They’re signs of affection and trust, two things that you should dish out to others as much as you do yourself.
These matter in adulthood as much as they do when we’re young, so there’s no reason to think the best custom teddy bears are just for kids. Go ahead, treat yourself to some cuddles.
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