How to Create a DIY Teddy Bear Camera

6 minute read

Nanny cams, most commonly concealed in the form of a teddy bear camera, are becoming ever more prevalent within US households. There’s a variety of reasons to have a hidden camera, other than monitoring your child’s nanny, and they’re no longer limited to static objects. Be that as it may, the teddy bear camera stereotype is justified both in theory and practice. It’s convenient and inconspicuous.

But, some of you might not be able to purchase a teddy bear nanny camera or simply can’t find a spy camera that fits your needs. Well, if the alternatives aren’t sufficient, fret not; we will provide you with a straightforward guide on how to make your ideal teddy bear spy camera all by yourself while including some suggestions for a camera that you can incorporate.

Making the Teddy Bear Camera

Before getting into the whole “building” process, let’s take a look at what you will need. Obviously enough, you’d need to pick a teddy bear that’s big enough to fit the camera without overly altering its shape, which shouldn’t be that hard; though, it’s important to stay as inconspicuous as possible.

The other part is the camera itself. Though, more on that in the following section.

Choosing a Spot and Beginning the “Surgery”

So, let’s say you’ve got yourself a decent camera and an unsuspecting teddy bear. For the monitored subjects to remain equally oblivious to them being recorded, you will need to pick a spot on the teddy bear where you will place the camera. Depending on the plush toy itself, you could opt to put the camera in the leg, the general torso area, or our go-to place - the eye.

Since the eye is what works best with most teddy bears, we’ll continue this guide from that perspective.

Making an Opening

In order to insert the camera in place of the eye, we need to make an incision. Don’t worry, even if you have no previous experience in conducting surgeries, you’ll be able to make the cut, but make sure to follow the protocol; only “medical personnel” should be present, lest your kid sees their favorite teddy bear being cut open. 

The ideal place to open the teddy bear would be the back of the neck, as the stitching would be nigh invisible on that spot. You’d want to make a cut big enough to take the fluff out and insert a camera, but small enough so it can be as unobtrusive as possible. 

If you’re going to use a wireless camera, as per our suggestions below, remember that you’ll need to take it out every once in a while to check your recordings. Should you decide to use a camera with some sort of adapter or cables, you would need to build an additional pouch to conceal all of that hardware. But, nobody wants that headache, am I right?

Getting to the Eye

Speaking of headaches, our teddy bear will surely have had one by now. Proceed by pulling out the stuffing from the hole on the back of its neck. Remember to not throw any of it away since you’ll be re-stuffing the toy once you insert the spy camera. Regarding the stuffing, take out as much of it as you can since you need to reach the eye without needlessly damaging the exterior. Pushing through with insufficient space will do exactly that.

Once you’re there, the eyes on the “teddy bear nanny camera to-be” would be either glued or otherwise attached, e.g. by being sewn-on. You could opt to replace them completely or modify them enough to be able to attach them to the camera lens. Depending on how clear the plastic is, the choice should be fairly simple; if the camera won’t be able to see through the modified eye, consider replacing it completely. Just make sure to keep both eyes alike - you don’t want any unwanted eye-to-eye contact, if you know what I mean.

Completing the Cyborg

Once you’ve modified the eye and attached it to the camera lens, you ought to proceed by putting it back in its place. This might require some adjusting to keep things symmetrical and to keep the teddy bear spy camera looking like just another teddy bear.

If everything is in position, begin re-stuffing the bear. Pad the area surrounding the camera a bit tighter to keep it in place without applying any glue since you’ll need to check your recordings now and then. After re-stuffing it, try and give it a little shake; if nothing moves, you may proceed with the next step. On the other hand, if the camera is too shaky or gets displaced, you can opt to add some additional padding, i.e. a different type of filler such as random cloth or cotton.

Afterward, do some stitching to your teddy bear spy camera and you’re all set!

Cameras You Can Use

Below you will find a list of the best cameras that you can include when building your teddy bear nanny camera. These best selling products are ideal due to their size, respectable video quality, and ease of use.

The top three cameras to incorporate when making a teddy bear nanny camera are as follows:

Micro Pocket Hidden Camera 

Sound activated and very well built.

  • Sound activated
  • Completely wireless
  • Sturdy metal frame
  • 640x480 px resolution
  • Two-hour rechargeable battery
  • Computer connection via USB cable to recharge and review

Button Hidden Camera Pro

Outstanding ease of use and best video quality.

  • Date & time-stamped video
  • Completely wireless
  • Simple to use
  • 1280x960 px @ 30 FPS
  • Two-hour rechargeable battery
  • Computer connection via USB cable to recharge and review

USB Flash Drive Spy Camera

A motion-activated flash drive camera that records sound.

  • Date & time-stamped video
  • Working flash drive with a hidden camera
  • Motion-activated
  • 720x480 px video (+sound)
  • Two-hour rechargeable battery
  • Directly plug into a computer to review and recharge

Before You Go, a Note on Legality

When using any hidden cameras, including teddy bear spy cameras at your home, it’s important to note that it’s legal to record in all areas except in rooms where a reasonable expectation of privacy is presumed, such as a bathroom. If the purpose of recording via hidden cameras is malicious intent, it is also illegal to do so.

The laws regarding audio surveillance are a bit more strict, though and consent is required in certain instances. For more information about the legality of all the devices sold by SpyGuy, head over to our detailed legal guide.

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