World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Margarete Steiff GmbH

Article Id: WHEBN0000556977
Reproduction Date:

Title: Margarete Steiff GmbH  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Stuffed toy, J. K. Farnell, Ilkley Toy Museum, Teddy bears, Gund Snuffles
Collection: Companies Based in Baden-Württemberg, Teddy Bear Manufacturers, Toy Companies of Germany
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Margarete Steiff GmbH

Margarete Steiff GmbH
Stuffed toy manufacturer
Industry Stuffed toys
Founded Germany, 1880
Founder Margarete Steiff
Headquarters Germany
Area served
Products Teddy bears, etc.
Steiff Factory Museum
1960s-era Steiff "Jocko" doll
Margarete Steiff

Steiff is a German-based plush toy company known for its high quality. It was begun in 1880 by Margarete Steiff, who was later assisted by her brother Fritz.

The toys began as elephants, and were originally a design Steiff found in a magazine and sold as pincushions to her friends. However, children began playing with them, and in the years following she went on to design many other animal-themed toys for children, such as dogs, cats and pigs. She designed and made most of the prototypes herself.

Steiff's nephew Richard joined in 1897 and gave the company an enormous boost in popularity by creating the teddy bear in 1902. By 1907, Steiff manufactured 974,000 bears, and has been increasing its output ever since.

The Steiff company motto, as styled by Margarete Steiff, is "Only the best is good enough for children". Steiff products are subject to meticulous testing and inspection. They are required to be highly flame resistant and, among other things, smaller pieces such as eyes must be able to resist considerable tension, wear and tear, etc.

The most common materials used in Steiff toys are alpaca, felt, mohair, and woven plush. Eyes are generally made of wood or glass, and the stuffing is commonly wood shavings or polyester fibers. A large amount of the work is done by hand, from design sketches to airbrushed paint. The final touch on any Steiff toy is the trademark "button in ear" (assuming the animal has one; in any case they'll find a spot for it).

The famed "button in ear" was devised by Margarete's nephew Franz in 1904, to keep counterfeits from being passed off as authentic Steiff toys. It is metal and originally had the symbol of an elephant, later replaced by the name "Steiff". The button is still used to distinguish Steiff toys from fakes.[1][2] Some special toys have both the elephant and the name.


  1. ^
  2. ^ The Steiff Collection

External links

  • Steiff Website in English
  • Steiff Website
  • Steiff Company, US-branch
  • BBC News: "Teddy bear celebrates 100th birthday"
  • The Steiff factory building in Giengen: Glass-icon of modernism. In: Goethe-Institut online, Architecture, September 2014
  • German Margarete Steiff Biographical TV movie at the Internet Movie Database

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.