The Original Online Teddy Bear Magazine
By Dawn Emerson                                   June-July 2017
Free Website Translator

We are revisiting Diana in this issue.

“Bears&Buds featured me in an article 10 years ago, and I think about all the memories from shows, articles and loyal collectors since then.” began Diana Watts of DiBears from Naples, Florida.

She was the first artist whose photo was featured on the cover of Bears&Bud. No one else has ever been on the cover; only bears or buds since then.

“How fun this has been, going back through the years, trying to remember all that has happened since 2007. Lots of memorable events have happened!

I still live in sunny Naples, Florida. I still love living here for the past 46 years. I love waking up to sunshine every day; makes me smile.”

Diana was born in Hawaii. Her father was in the Navy, and as a small child she moved a lot. “My Mom was a very talented seamstress. My father was a talented wood worker, dong interesting work and paintings on autos.

I have three sisters, Debbie, Donna an Denise. We were all named beginning with D's and Mom gave us all middle names with L's. LOL

Each one of the sisters have artistic genes. They all sew, some like to paint, compose poetry, draw and write children’s books. “Thanks Mom and Dad!”

Diana talent leans towards fabric art. “I’ve had the pleasure of taking classes from many talented artists along the way.”

She started collecting bears many years ago, then made her first bear in a class nearly 21 years ago. “I've taken classes from Diane Gard, Steve Schutt, Denis Shaw, Michelle Lamb and from numerous other talented artists.

I always pick up some new techniques with each class.

Diana is a full-time hair stylist for nearly 39 years. “Wow, that looks like a lot
of years when it is written
on paper!” she said.

“I am still mostly known for my fur bears, bunnies and lions. I do enjoy using mohair and other materials besides fur from repurposed coats and wraps. I love bringing a face alive in fur, giving my creation a third life.”

Diana’s trade mark is her embroidery on the bears’ foot pads. “I have been doing that since the beginning.”

She loves designing the ornate clothes and finding interesting accessories to compliment each one-of-a-kind bear.

All artists evolve in their bear/bud making as the years go by. They make adjustments to old patterns, creating new patterns and new bear buddies.

“I would get bored just doing the same thing over and over again,” she said.


Captain Hook & Company

Sir Hopkins & Quakers


Harvest and Astor












Diana constantly is searching for unique looking furs, mohairs and some faux fur. Often the faux fur has very interesting textures and colors.

“It is a family affair at my house for making bears. My very patient husband Steve, is my rock! He helps me with the bear making, keeping me sane when I am on the edge!

My sisters help inspire me with new design ideas, sometimes pushing me out
of my comfort zone. Some days are good, some days are crazy! I am so thankful for all of them! As they say it takes a village!”

Diana has been making bears for over 20 years. “I’m happy that I have had loyal collectors that entire time! They continue to adopt my creations.”

Participating in many online shows, Diana has added new collectors. “I am so grateful to have met these wonderful people and I have made so many friends thru the bears.”

Even some of Diana’s hair salon clients have adopt her creations. “They are so supportive and encouraging, and love to look at the online shows while under the hair drier!”

The best part of making bears for Diane is when collectors come to me at shows, or send emails with photos of how they display the bears. Knowing how much they enjoy my bears, warms my heart and keeps me creating.

As time flies, Diana now has three grand children. Her oldest son Billy and his wife Kelly have the twins, Haley and Hannah, that you saw in the first article. The girls are now 13 and just finished 7th grade with honors.

“We have had an addition since then. My youngest son Terrell and his wife Heather, have a 5 year old son named Tanner. He just graduated from pre school. I just love spending time with them. They bring me such joy!

My favorite thing to relax is to ride my bike. That is my “alone time” when I can regroup my thoughts and think about new designs.

Diana loves the theater and holds season tickets. “I can really relax during a performance.”

Cats and kittens are part of her life too. When the sorrow of losing a cat she finds herself volunteering at a cat rescue facility. At the present four rescue kitties reside in the house. “Love those little guys but did have to stop after adopting four. LOL!”

“I have been fortunate to win many awards since the last article. I won a URSA Award and a Toby for my Woodland and Moonbeam piece.
A Beverly Port award for my Astrid and Bjorn along with many URSA Awards over the last few years.

First place URSA Awards winners were: Arianwen,
Mr. Freedom and Sir Brave. One of my favorites last year was Mr. Hopkins and Sir Quakers.

I really appreciate everyone taking the time to look at the contest and vote. Thank you!

A special note to Valerie Rogers, Publisher/Executive Editor, who continues to put up with my late night last minute work! Her friendship and support over all the years means so much.”

"I just want to end with a note to all the collectors who have adopted my creations throughout the years, sending you a huge thank you!

We would not be able to continue creating bears without you! I will be forever grateful for this experience with you.

I’m looking forward to making more fuzzy faces and more loving memories.”


Harlow and Boo




John Henry








Sugar Plum

URSA Awards Winner 2010


Mischief & Snowball

URSA Awards Winner 2011

Woodland and Moonbeam.

URSA Awards Winner 2015
Toby winner 2016





Diana would be happy to send you a notification announcing the next show she'll be seen.


Click on the envelop and ask to be on her mailing list.



URSA Awards Winner 2016

Diana Watts


Member since Dec. 2005


Learn more . . .


Where is Naples, Florida?

Click on the map >>>

Editor’s note: Diana was one of the first artists to join Bears&Buds in 2005, and her faith and support over the 12 years is appreciated more than words can ever express.
Thank you Diana for being a charter Professional Artist Member.

Collectors - if you like reading articles like this, why not subscribe to Bears&Buds?

Just $15.00 a year. You'll receive a collector's lapel pin and a password to enter the Collectors' page where you'll find more wonderful articles..

Artists - would you like to be seen by our worldwide readers each month? Become a Professional Artist-Member of Bears&Buds today! Advertise FREE ! Your membership password will take you to the B2B section loaded with selling, making and how-to ideas.



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