Steiff Trademark – The Button in Ear

Our customers always ask us about the meaning of the Steiff button and the differently coloured labels behind the button in ear. Yes – those are the Trademark of the Steiff Company.

In 1902 the first Steiff Teddy Bear was manufactured in Giengen. To make this teddy bear unique and forgery proof, its inventors agreed to have its own trademark, and came up with the idea to have a hand crafted button in the ear. The term “button in Ear” was also registered as a trademark, and was all legal and protected by May 1905. Before then, the bears had a little card tag which showed an elephant with an s shaped trunk. The metal button with the elephant motif was only used from 1904 to 1905.

Today there are 3 different labels behind the Button in Ear.

Yellow_label_SteiffOriginal Collection Classic (Yellow label with gold button and red writing)

Every original Steiff Teddy Bear with Button in Ear is guaranteed to come from the famous Steiff Family, and is clearly recognizable. The yellow label with the red writing means that the teddy bears are one of many from a wide, unlimited edition.




Limited_Edition_labelLimited Editions (White label with red writing)

All the animals at Steiff have the distinction of white ear tag with red writing because these show that these are produced in a limited edition. This means that only a limited number is available and some are only available in certain countries. Those with the white ear tag and gold plated Button in Ear carry a new owner certificate, which insures authenticity and special status as a limited edition Steiff Teddy Bear.




Replica_Steiff_labelReplica (White label with black writing)

These teddy bears of the replica series are very extraordinary. This means that they have been produced exactly according to their historic role models from the Steiff archives. All Steiff replicas have a white ear tag with black writing to document their special status, and the true to original Button in Ear from the respective year of production. This proved that the Teddy Bear is a particularly limited edition with an extraordinary historic character.

We hope this answers some of your questions. We invite you to view all of our Steiff Collector Teddy Bears in stock at the moment. Please contact us if you like to order Steiff Teddy Bears that are not on our website. We always have the newest catalogue available.