Haute dogs! World renowned Irish hat maker features alongside top UK milliners in calendar showcasing rescue dogs donning elaborate canine couture
A world-renowned Irish hat maker has featured alongside top UK milliners in a calendar that showcases rescue dogs donning elaborate canine couture.
From the falling leaves of autumn to a February’s flurry of flying hearts, Haute Dogs Calendar 2019 hopes to hit the homes and hearts of dog lovers nationwide.
Raising money for charity All Dogs Matter, it aims to show the love and happiness rescue dogs can bring to families.
It features headwear from 12 designers including, the world-famous Philip Treacy OBE from Ireland, described as ‘perhaps the greatest living milliner’ by Vogue Magazine, and the Queen’s milliner Rachel Trevor Morgan.
Organiser Awon Golding, 38, has her own rescue Stevie, a five-year-old, Staffordshire Bull Terrier cross, featuring for February, appearing alongside 11 others rescue dogs.
All proceeds from the calendar, which are selling for £20, and other items will go to All Dogs Matter – who rescued and rehomed 350 dogs last year.
Awon, a milliner from London, said: “They are all gorgeous in their own way, each photo the dogs looked different and you see different personalities in the photos.
“People are really passionate about dogs and helping them.
“If you look into the dogs’ eyes you can see who you are helping. Every time you buy the calendar, you help a dog like the one on the page and that’s what people are responding to.
“I selected the best 12 UK milliners, each with a different style and aesthetic – this is their artistic response the month they were given.
“We have everything from abstract head pieces to literal ones.
“Rachel’s shows tumbling autumn leaves and Philip’s hat is about spring and looks like something a human would wear.
“People think of rescue dogs as scrappy mutts that wouldn’t be associated with couture, which is why I love this project. We are melding these two things together.”
The images were shot over one day by Rachel Oates, 30, from East London, who allocated half hour slots to each dog.
The former fashion turned professional pet photographer, of two years, relished the chance to take part in such a quirky but worthwhile campaign.
Rachel said: “Who doesn’t love the idea of dogs wearing fabulous hats. They are not practical, but they are brilliant.
“I love the image of Harris who was Mr August and had a hat made by Lizzie McQuade.
“I really liked him as a dog and because he has a slight overbite, his face is really sweet.
“He struck an over the shoulder pose and killed the whole room when he did it. Absolute star quality there.
“I also loved November, which featured a dog named Peggy, who only has three legs, she did so well.
“Her hat was firework inspired, so we were nervous whether she would be comfortable, but she was a superstar.
“I managed to capture a rang in emotions for each dog. There are good head tilt shots, silly ones that look really cute and all the hats give a different look too.
“I really enjoyed it, it was nice to do something different, you have to love a challenge – 12 dogs in one day wearing hats for a calendar was fun.”
Awon came up with the idea after occasionally putting hats on her dog Stevie, who she rescued four-and-a-half years ago from All Dogs Matter.
She added: “As soon as we were down there, Stevie came flying out, licking us all over our face, she’s the happiest, loveliest and friendliest dog.”
Determined to give back to the charity, she tasked 12 of the top milliners in the UK with challenge of creating hats for the calendar.
These milliners all designed headwear: Philip Treacy, Awon Golding, Edwina Ibbotson, Rachel Trevor Morgan, J Smith Esquire, Ian Bennett, William Chambers, Lizzie McQuade, Bridget Bailey, Jess Collett, Laura Cathcart and Prudence.
All donations will go towards vet fees and the upkeep and provision of the rescue dogs in kennel and foster homes.
Awon’s designed February’s hat, showing hearts appearing to flutter through the air and featuring her pooch Stevie.
She said: “It was a great day, I was surprised how compliant the dogs were and they were really into it.
“All the dogs seemed to be so well trained and up for a laugh, it was a lovely day meeting all the owners and seeing the passion for charity and dogs.”
For more information visit: www.indiegogo.com/projects/haute-dogs-calendar-2019#.