The Birth of our Famous Teddy Bears.

Back in 1992 wool prices had crashed and the district was in the grips of a drought. The community of Tambo, western QLD, were challenged to come up with new industry to sustain the economy of this little town. A brain storming session during a workshop developed the idea that Tambo could assist the wool industry, encourage tourists and create employment by making unique teddy bears from wool pelts and stuff them with wool.

Popular opinion said it wouldn’t work, but after many laughs, three women – Mary Sutherland, Charm Ryrie,
and Helen Sargood – decided to bite the bullet. After many frustrating months of designing and planning, the first Tambo Teddies were ready for sale in February 1993.
The impact and enthusiasm of the public was overwhelming and the business grew to employ over fifteen part time workers.
Tambo Teddies take pride of place in homes all over the world and our famous teddy bears have made our little town of Tambo the ‘outback Teddy capital of Australia’.
After more than twenty years sewing bears and managing the business, the remaining director decided to it was time to retire. Wishing to only sell to a local, Mary was delighted when in a unique synergy, three more local ladies decided to purchase this iconic business

The Next Chapter

Three new women took up the reins of Tambo
Teddies in 2014! Kiralee, Tammy and Alison, two teachers and an arts and cultural officer got together and made the decision to take up the challenge of continuing the Tambo Teddy tradition.
We have had a lot of laughs, enjoyed the adventure and are proud of what we have achieved. We have renovated, won a national competition, state awards and provided gifts for Royalty, Premiers and Ministers.

Tambo is very important to us all and Tambo Teddies is very important to Tambo. We are proud to be the owners of this unique business, it is in safe hands and we are always looking forward to the next adventure.
After four years, Kiralee decided it was time to leave Teddies, so that she could spend more time enjoying the joy and new journey of family life and helping where she can with the property work. While we are sad she left, we had had loads of fun and laughter, and love including her children in many of our Teddies adventures. We continue to expand and grow our little business and aim to eventually be a ‘global’ entity!

Tambo Teddies - Tammy Johnson

Tammy Johnson

“Eight years in, a husband and three
children later, can I say it has been a busy
time at Tambo Teddies! I have learnt a
lot about all aspects of small business and
am enjoying the challenge of juggling the
everyday tasks and a growing family. It
has been fantastic working with the team
at Tambo Teddies, exploring many new
ideas and implementing evolving systems
and processes. We have a great product
in the Tambo Teddy and I can’t wait see
where the next few years takes us…”

Tambo Teddies Alison Shaw

Alison Shaw

“After eight years running this small business
I still love wool! Teddies is always
taking us on another adventure as we
strive to improve and grow. been a busy
time at Tambo Teddies! I love meeting the
challenges that pop up along the way,
creating content, creating new products,
finding ways to grab attention to promote
Teddies as well as working with a magnificent
raw material – wool!
But I think most of all I enjoy sharing our
beautiful bears with the wider world!”