Category: Pet Fashion

Wags 4 Hope

By , April 23, 2014 12:26 pm

Written By:
Annie Blumenfeld, the Founder and President of Wags 4 Hope

April is National Heartworm Disease Awareness, month and I would love to share about how I got started with my non-profit organization called Wags 4 hope. My family began searching for three years through countless pet stores, rescue shelters, Newspapers, and private dog breeders, for a loving and loyal friend. A year and a half ago, our search happily ended when I was searching the Internet and found a two-year-old shaggy dog that had been rescued at a high kill shelter in Houston, Texas.

At his Veterinarian check up it soon was discovered that Teddy tested positive for heartworm disease through an antigen test. This blood test detects specific proteins, called antigens, which are released by adult female heartworms into the dog’s bloodstream. Teddy had to be given two injections of arsenic and remain in a crate. He had to be inactive and carefully monitored for a couple of months. The treatment for heartworm disease is very expensive and difficult for dogs to recover from. It can also be potentially toxic to the dog’s body and can cause serious complications, such as life-threatening blood clots to the lungs. Treatment is very expensive because it requires multiple visits to the Veterinarian, with the process of blood work, and X-rays. It broke my heart to learn that my dog had endured great pain.

Having learned devastating effects of heartworm disease from my loving companion, I seek to educate pet owners across the country about heartworm disease. I founded Wags 4 Hope in an effort to raise awareness and help support shelter animals’ medical needs. I combine my love of painting with my passion for animals. All of the proceeds raised through my paintings are given animal shelters and rescues.

For more information please visit

Annie WAGS 4 HOPE pictured with Barbara Naugle, the Director of the Connecticut Humane Society

Annie pictured with Barbara Naugle, the Director of the Connecticut Humane Society


FIT’s 5th Annual Pet Fashion Show: BARK-à-Porter

By , April 25, 2013 12:20 pm
BARK 2013 logo

Showcasing past enrolled and current adult student pet product designs. See our doggie models strut the runway in true fashionista style. BARK-à-Porter is also a charitable endeavor, held in partnership with the New York City Mayor’s Alliance and Animal Care and Control of NYC. We promise an experience worthy of market week in Paris.

Get your tickets before they sell out!

Date: May 3, Friday
Time: 5:30pm-7:00pm
Location: Katie Murphy Amphitheater


Watch videos of previous shows:

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Pet Fashion Event

By , March 21, 2013 10:35 am

Dog’s Night Out: Trunk & Fashion Show

By , December 10, 2012 10:33 am

Some of our alumni from the Pet Fashion Design and Marketing Certificate program have joined together to bring you this wonderful fashion & trunk show!
I hope to see you there!

Pet Fashion Hotel

Fashion for Paws: alumni trunk show

By , November 27, 2012 10:32 am

Stay tuned – I will be posting a lot of upcoming December events in the next few days. Here’s the first one to kick it off!

Some of our alumni from the Pet Fashion Design and Marketing Certificate program have joined together to bring you this wonderful trunk show! Hope you can make it!

Fashion for Paws trunk show


BARKinistas Unleashed: Meet the Designers

By , April 26, 2012 8:35 pm

dawn photo
Dawn Deisler

‘BLACK-AND-CO’ is  an upscale contemporary canine apparel and accessories   line, specializing in genuine leathers, suede, snakeskins and industrial grade hardware.  Design inspirations are taken from the Mens and Womens  Fashion Industry, using current  trends and colors to develop fashion-forward canine collections, including collars, harnesses,  leashes, coats, sweaters and totes.

I will begin selling online shortly at WWW.BLACK-AND-CO.COM. All products will be manufactured in NYC.  You can also contact me directly for any custom pieces from the FIT Pet Fashion Show at Dawn@BLACK-AND-CO.COM

Chewee wearing Dawn Deisler Chappy in Dawn Deisler

Simply, for the love of dogs and fashion!  As a clothing designer in the fashion industry for over 20 years, I was frustrated when I could not find a warm, fashionable coat for my male toy schnauzer, Chappy.  Most coats were a plain nylon, fiber filled with a Velcro tab- the velco sticks to his hair, and he hates it.  So I designed him a simple coat, inspired by the seasons trend of shearling, and attached adjustable metal rivet snaps, in case he was wearing a heavy sweater underneath.  I live in Carroll Gardens Brooklyn, which has a very large dog population.  People started stopping me and asking me where I got his coat.  I realized that I was not the only person not able to find  functional and fashionable coats for dogs.   I found that I had found my true passion, designing clothing, but for canines!

Experience in the Pet Design & Marketing Program:
My experience in the PET CERTIFICATE PROGRAM has been very rewarding and positive.  All of the instructors are in the pet industry, so they bring a wealth of knowledge to this little known industry.  The classes are very diversified, from design, sketching, patternmaking, branding and marketing.  Many of the instructors have guest industry speakers, which further demonstrates that the pet industry  is a large, and exciting field that is constantly growing.

It is thru the support of the instructors and staff of the program that I have been able to participate in the annual canine fashion show for the last 2 years, placing 2 ensembles last year in “Best Designs’ and winning ‘Best of Show’ and co-winning ‘Most Saleable’ this year.

black & co website



BARKinistas Unleashed: Meet the Designers

By , April 23, 2012 12:15 pm

Lauren headshot

Lauren Brooke

With an estimated number of 165 million pets in the United States today. and the humanization of pets rapidly increasing, Lauren Brooke of Emma’s Closet created a company that caters to the luxuries for today’s pet. She provides entertainment and happiness to pets and pet parents alike by creating enjoyable and fashionable clothing, party-wear, collars, leashes, and jewelry to spice up everyday life as well as formal events.

Contact Lauren Brooke at (516) 655-2400 for private consultations and additional information.

Emma’s Closet was founded in 2011.

Lauren Brooke is a Fashion Design student at the Fashion Institute of Technology. She has extensive experience in the fashion industry both styling customers and designing apparel and accessories. She has worked for companies such as the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, Anthropologie, and Paper Magic Group, Halloween Costume Division. Lauren also has also had her work displayed in the Fashion After Bark Fashion Show in 2011 & Barkinistas Unleashed in 2012, and has designed Pet Apparel for the New York Yankees.

zoe in peach dress

Experience in the Pet Design & Marketing Program:
There has never been a time in my life where fashion wasn’t a predominantly large factor. I come from a family of fashionistas and artists, from my mother who worked in a Soho gallery, to my opera-singing grandparents, and even their parents. And I am an avid dog-lover and give nothing but the best for my little princess. The experiences that I have had in my life thus far have taught me that it is always best to follow your heart. So I have decided that since making pet apparel does nothing but put a smile on my face as well as satisfies my creative side, I must go for it. The Pet Design & Marketing Program at FIT has guided me towards fulfilling my dream.

Lauren contact info


BARKinistas Unleashed: Meet the Designers

By , April 20, 2012 1:35 pm

virginia armstrong

Virginia Armstrong

Gone to the Dogs Couture creates elegant custom apparel for the chic four-legged fashionista.  Share you special occasions with your furry friend.   She can now be a beautifully attired as you.  If you are walking down the aisle on your wedding day or down the red carpet on that special night, let Gone to the Dogs Couture design a gorgeous gown or ensemble for your companion.

Gone to the Dogs Couture was founded in 2011 and Virginia is now available for private design consultations.

Where: (currently under construction)

The founder and designer, Virginia Armstrong, is a graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology and worked on Seventh Avenue in better missy and high-end firms before starting her own custom design business for bridal and special occasion wear.  In addition to many private clients, she also sold to the bridal salon at Henri Bendel.  After several detours along the way, Virginia has returned to custom couture design, but now for the four-legged set- combining her life-long love for animals and fashion.

Experience in the Pet Product Design and Marketing Professional certificate program:
I discovered the Pet Product Design and Marketing program by pure and happy coincidence when I was visiting F.I.T. for a quilt show last year.  I enrolled immediately and have enjoyed all of the faculty, courses, and fellow students.  Just as in my first experience at F.I.T. many years ago, I have learned richly from the accomplished faculty and have made many wonderful life-long friends.  Although I have completed the certificate program, I plan to return to take advantage of additional courses.


BARKinistas Unleashed: Meet the Designers

By , April 16, 2012 1:47 pm

Cheryl Jackson photo

Cheryl Jackson

The main goal of Pink Diamond Paws (PDP) is to design and produce quality made clothing for puppies small dogs, and to create a shopping environment that caters to the apparel needs of your pet. PDP invites the owner to have a great experience choosing a quality made garment for their pets. And your pet will feel so comfortable in all of our garments.  Our focus for our clothing line will be evening dresses, casual dresses jackets, and vests. Your pet will appreciate PDP as much as you will.

Pink Diamond Paws was created in 2010 and will launch in October 2012


PDP Amber in Red Dresssy Dress

I chose to attend the Pet Apparel Certificate program because I knew that it would guide me into the right direction to be able to design my own small dog apparel line. It would also give me the correction information to expand it a company and a brand. My experience has been nothing short of wonderful. I have truly enjoyed this program and would honestly recommend it to anyone with a passion for fashion in pet apparel.

Experience in the Pet Fashion Design and Marketing certificate program:
My experience attending Pet Apparel Certificate Program has been such a wonderful experience. I have had the pleasure of meeting so many individuals who are vested in the same ideas as myself regarding fashion and pets. I have also formed life long friends that I know I will be able to connect with as I proceed with my business goals. The instructors have been such a vibrant part of the programs. These faculty member have worked and owned businesses within the industry and has a proven track record to help the students strive for success. I know my business will prosper and grow due to all that I have learned in this program.

Pink Diamond Paws Business Card


BARKinistas Unleashed: Meet the Designers

By , April 13, 2012 1:20 pm

Here is our second BARKinistas Unleashed 2012 Pet Fashion Designer interview!

Coty Farkas headshot

Coty Farkas, Creative director, designer extraordinaire, founder and owner of Doggy & Me & Cotyageous Designs.
Entrepreneur, Coty , lifestyle designer and artistic director brings over 20 years of  experience in fashion, interior and beauty industry organizing fashion shows, designing, marketing,  production, trade show representation and booth designing, event planning for profit and non-profit organizations, and selling to the wholesale and retail markets.

More than a faux paw! Doggy & Me designs are matching fashion accessories for owners and their Furry love children.  The first collection is called Circolo de Luna, in Spanish and Italian this mean” circle moon” or” full moon”. Creativity, love and passion are ignited by the sun’s energizing  the full moon.  By adorning our pups In   jewelled feather harnesses, collars with matching leashes, bracelets, anklets, and other fashionable accessories, sporting brilliant vivid colours like; passionate red,(healing hearts) sunny yellow gold,  the purity of whites( both giving inspiration), and cool blues( rejuvenating the whole body mind and soul). Doggy and Me fashions have a spiritual quality .Wearing these creations energizes both owner and pets. Reminding us that anything and everything is possible, howling with  joy , embracing a child like fun and unconditional love that we have for our furry life partners.
In this  new age of consciousness   Tribe, Candy and Gypsy, Ice Queen and, Cirque   are  all part of Doggy& Me’s 2012” Circolo de Luna collection “ Look for  them!

Where can you find these masterpieces?
Certainly not in Target, Pet Smart, or Osh Gosh but rather in high end speciality shops, worldwide, high end e-commerce sites, airports, hotel gift shops. From Toronto, London, Paris, Budapest, Hong Kong, New York, Hawaii, Doggy & Me will be EVERYWHERE!!

Coty Farkas  coty farkas

Doggy inspiration was born in 2007. With years of research and perfecting every aspect of the business, finding just the right materials, and manufacturers Doggy & Me  launches in the great year of 2012.

All animals should be cherished and adorned. My wish for animal parents is to feel the same excitement and pride I feel every time my feline princess strut’s her fancy collars and jewels, with her demur stride and hunched up back, I know she’s thinking she’s the bombe. Not only do I want all pets to feel special but, when the owner are walking with them, I want them to feel the same sense of exhilaration wearing my designs.
All my designed items are energized and blessed to bring happiness joy love and positive energy to the ones wearing them.

Experience in the Pet Fashion Design and Marketing certificate program:
I started the pet product and marketing certificate program in summer of 2011. The courses have been exceptional, in giving me the confidence, resources and know how to make my dreams a reality, accomplishing my goals, giving me the right tools to finally bring my products to market! My instructor Kris Lynch in running her own successful pet industry business ( Ruff- Doggie) has been instrumental in teaching all her students what to do and what not to do when running  their own pet  business. I am still taking the classes, however thanks to FIT and my associations from there. I feel fully confident to launch my business now!

coty farkas

BARKinistas Unleashed is free and open to the public, however you need a ticket to enter. Tickets are no longer available.

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