A new business in Kirkcaldy which aims to entertain youngsters by allowing them to design their own teddy bears is officially launching this weekend.
Stuffy Bears is based at 210 High Street (opposite the Koku Shi Japanese restaurant at the bottom of Kirk Wynd) and arranges workshops for children so they can make their own bears either in-store or at home.
It is owned by Kirkcaldy-born Andy McMillan and his wife Donna-Marie who are having an official opening for the shop this Saturday (February 3) at 11am.
Andy said as well as running the make-a-bear sessions for youngsters – where they can stuff the bears, put in special wishing hearts and add a sound module or special scent – the couple also offer a dolls’ hospital where they carry out minor repairs for teddies or dolls including sewing alterations, cleaning, make-up removal and additional stuffing.
The dad-of-two, who lives in Leven, explained where the idea for Stuffy Bears came from.
He said: “I am from Fife but grew up in the Highlands. My wife and I have mainly had experience of working in hotels, but the hours are very long so we were looking to do something a bit different. Two years ago my son wanted to go to Build a Bear but the nearest ones were either in Livingston or Ocean Terminal in Edinburgh. We found an independent one in Dundee and we just thought ‘we can do this’.
“We decided to invest in our own business – Stuffy Bears has been a year in the making.”
Andy said they came across the vacant premises in Kirkcaldy High Street and thought it would be ideal as it was in a central location. Stuffy Bears opened on December 20 last year.
“We had a soft opening in December so we could tweak any problems in terms of operation and stock,” Andy said. “Everything went well though so we thought we would wait until after January before having an official opening.”
On Saturday Jamie the Jester will entertain young visitors and there will also be competitions to win vouchers and bears.
Andy added: “We are offering people something a bit different.
“In Kirkcaldy there are soft play areas for children, but there is nowhere else in Fife offering make-a-bear workshops.”
Stuffy Bears is open Tuesday to Sunday from 10am to 5pm and 10am to 2pm on Mondays.