Wendy Grady has been collecting bears for 20 years - now she has turned businesswoman and opened her own collectors shop at Hatton Country World near Warwick.
After spending 16 years working as a qualified nurse, she suffered an injury which caused her to give up the profession and pursue her dream of a business selling collectable bears and personalised embroidered gifts.
A Gift for Life opened last month and houses more than 300 teddy bears of all colours, shapes and sizes, ranging from small bears at £1.50 to Jasper, a four- foot handmade Steiner bear worth over £1,000.
Branded bears include Cotswold Collectables, Deans, Merrythought and Steiner, as well as handmade bears from local artists who would not otherwise have an outlet for their work.
"I had been making and collecting bears for more than 20 years and recently started selling them at craft shows," said Wendy
"Then, when I became ill, it gave me the nudge to start my own shop."
"I am interested in all things crafty and aim to offer a wide selection of equipment and kits for people to try making their own bears and crafts at home.
"My current passion is for an old craft known as needle felting, which takes raw wool that is then sculptured and shaped using a barbed needle to create the most beautiful little creatures and bears.
" I also specialise in bespoke personalised embroidery on anything from pillowcases, towels to babygrows - I even once embroidered a marriage proposal onto a pillowcase for a customer, and luckily she said yes."
Hatton Shopping Village has 25 craft and gift shops situated in converted Victorian farm buildings, antiques from 20 dealers, a farm shop, and outlet shopping for clothes and homewares.