Grognassou Co By Sophie Bouret (France)
My name is Sophie, I am born in 1968 and I live in Antony (south of Paris) with my husband Olivier, as well as Pilou, a basset hound, and Play-boy, a griffon. The three of them are getting a bit jealous of the time I spend with the bears.
I’ve always loved plush animals (not only bears!); my favorite one used to be a lion cub, which is very worn out today, but still sitting in the attic with all the others… I’ve never managed to abandon any of them! I would not call myself a “collector”, and I don’t really like classical bears (I find they are too rigid), but it does occur to me to fall for four-legged creatures at shows or on the net, and our house is full of them… At school, I was a lot more interested in art than in maths; after high school, I studied drawing at Académie Julian for one year, and then old techniques of still-life deception at the Van der Kelen school in Brussels.
So , I spent close to ten years working in decorative painting: false marbles, false woods, gilding, patina… very pleasant and attractive activities, but very “physical” as well: walls, ceilings, staircases and too much removal...
Not much in common with bears! It’s only in 2001 when the “virus” hit me! I entered the bear world by chance, while surfing on the net. I then went to a show in Paris and there it was: love at first sight for one of the bears (but it was far too expensive!)
I immediately tested synthetic fur and standard patterns, but the results were very different from my visions !
So ,I had to read and test a lot of different shapes before I could be proud of my “first” bear, in 2002 !
Each new bear is a new adventure and I only make one-of-a-kind ; a few of them can stand but the majority are flexible and heavy, and they look somewhat lazy.
They’re all very different from each other; it’s their fairly “grumpy” look which gave the name “Grognassou” (probably an unconscious reference to my Dad and to a feature of our family character!).
Grognassou Co website: http://www.grognassou.com/