Chances are when you purchase a Tambo Teddy it might just have the initials ‘VK’ on the bum tag and will have been created in the teddy bear workshop by Tambo Teddies Master Crafter, Verna Kruckow.
The Kruckow family moved to Tambo in April 2003 and Verna started working part-time at Teddies in May of that year. For the first few years she sewed Bickie Bears and echidnas, perfecting these before moving onto crafting the ‘big bears’, the Basils and Tobies.
Working for the previous owner in a part-time capacity, Verna spent her time creating bears at her machine in one of the back rooms of the teddy bear workshop. Two years ago when Alison, Kiralee and Tammy purchased the business, Verna literally came with it and was quickly moved into the front room so visitors could witness the bears coming to life. Quite regularly customers watch as Verna sews a bear and then feel so connected with it that they just have to buy it ‘hot off the press’.
Verna is very much part of the business and takes great pride in her work, she enjoys working with the rest of the team and is always willing to hop up and give a hand where needed. A very patient mentor to new sewers, she generously takes the time to lead them through all the steps and stages necessary to create gorgeous teddy bears. Working alongside a learner sewer, Verna carefully nurtures their creativity until they feel confident enough to take a machine home.
Verna understands better than most the importance of Tambo Teddies to the local tourism industry and the town itself. Whenever a resident says they are from Tambo, whether they are in Brisbane, Toowoomba or further north in Townsville or Cairns the reply that generally comes straight back is ‘Oh Tambo Teddies – how are the teddies going?’
Well, Verna knows exactly how the bears are going! Under her guidance and with her creative skills the bears are going exceptionally well.