Tag Archives: Pet Fashion

em(BARK) on a new path…

Meet our Instructor,  Robin Droescher!

Robin Droescher teaches SXF 225: How to Style, Plan and Merchandise a Pet Products Line.

So, tell us a little about yourself…

I worked in the women’s fashion apparel industry for many years in design, product dev. and manufacturing. I was very fortunate to have had the opportunity to work at Ralph Lauren, Banana Republic, Calvin Klein and my last position was at Liz Claiborne. Six years ago I combined 2 of my loves – dogs and design. I launched Robin Meyer NYC. We produce a line of clothing and accessories for dogs with a fashion meets function point of view. A portion of my business has evolved into consulting for a couple of other dog manufacturers as well as doing private label for Barneys New York Dog and Orvis.

Bark Place Store

We’ve heard that you’ve emBARKed on a new job path…
I recently opened a retail boutique and grooming salon called Bark Place. I carry my line of products as well as other manufacturers. We have a full product assortment of coats, sweaters, beds, toys and treats. It is a great way to test new products and if they are successful to go into a production run the following season. The grooming business as been doing extremely well from the day we opened. I wanted to create something modern and state of the art – a place where people feel comfortable leaving their 4 legged children and are pleased with how they looked when they are picked up. I believe we have succeeded!

Bark Place store

What is exciting in the pet market right now?
I think one the exciting things in the pet market now is that apparel and accessories for dogs really follows the trends of what is happening in the human apparel market. I am starting to work on Fall 2016. I have spent the past few days shopping stores, looking through fashion magazines and browsing trend services on line. I know what sells in my line but it is a matter of taking the basis of what works and making it look fresh and new for the coming season.

Bark Place store Bark Place store

Can you give us a sneak peek of your class?
I have taught my class several times now. The first class I ask my students what they really would like to learn and take away. Each class I modify slightly to accommodate their requests. We spend time merchandising an assortment so it is focused, cohesive with a clear point of view. I then teach costing exercises using different classifications of product: coats, sweaters etc. We start with the cost of all the raw materials, add labor, shipping charges etc. to come up with a first cost. We then work on the mathematical formulas to bring the 1st cost to wholesale with margin implications and then to the MSRP (Manufacturers Suggested Retail Price). I also talk a little about how to import from overseas factories.

Thank you for taking the time to chat with us!

Robin Droescher teaches SXF 225: How to Style, Plan and Merchandise a Pet Products Line.

Illustration Interview

Meet our Instructor,  Joan Chiverton!

Joan Chiverton

So, tell us a little about yourself…

I’ve been an artist and illustrator my whole life. Recently I’ve discovered I really enjoy etching, monoprinting and silkscreen printing. I make it a point to sketch wherever I go. I often bring etching plates to concerts and jazz clubs and work directly on them at those venues.

I’m currently represented by The Old Print Shop, where I’m showing a new series of musician etchings this fall.

I’m on the Board of Directors of the Society of Illustrators. I teach at the Fashion Institute of Technology, and Harbor VA Hospital. And I organize a special sketching program at the Bard Graduate Center Gallery. My work has been in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and numerous other publications.

I’ve also worked with numerous ad agencies and corporations as an award-winning art director and designer.

I can’t remember a time I wasn’t painting and drawing. My father, Albert Pels, was a fine artist, my mother, Gertrude Pels was an artist and children’s book writer. I’ve also managed to make time to raise 3 amazing children, Michael, Peter and Julia.

etching of musicians
Etching of musicians

Was there a project or accomplishment that you consider to be significant in your career?

I won Art Director’s Club awards and One Show gold awards as an art director in New York City before becoming creative director at several ad agencies in the Albany, NY region, including owning my own business. During that period, my companies won hundreds of creative awards. I also had a close working relationship with the New York State Children’s Theater in Albany, a pioneering theater group that saw the debut of many important plays and musicals.

Since my return to New York City, I’ve concentrated on illustration, my first love. The city is, and has always been my favorite subject, and I’ve been creating work that captures its people and its music.

concert sketched on location by Joan Chiverton
Concert sketched on location

Tell us about your current/upcoming exhibits…

Recently I’ve had exhibits and been part of shows at the Society of Illustrators, NY Society of Etchers, New Jersey City University and the Mehu Gallery. I am represented by The Old Print Shop on Lexington Ave and 30 Street.

sketch at Bark Dog Walk for Cancer Society
sketch at Bark Dog Walk for Cancer Society

What do you enjoy most about teaching?

When students start to draw they observe their environment and see the world differently. It literally changes their lives. I especially enjoy seeing some of my students progress professionally and gain recognition in the arts. And of course, I love to see students using the talents and skills they’ve learned with me, to enrich their lives and professions, whatever path they choose.

Thank you for taking the time to chat with us!

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Joan Chiverton teaches SXD 635 Quick Sketching for the Pet Product Business and SXG 140 Life Drawing Basics for Costume Design.

NY NY Lapdogs of luxury via @CrainsNewYork

John Larson of Water4Dogs helps French bulldog Connie with her recovery from spinal-cord damage. Photo: Buck Ennis

Lapdogs of luxury via @CrainsNewYork

Between our Professional Development Certificate Programs in Pet Product Design and Marketing and Creative Enterprise Ownership, FIT can help you get into the Pet Business- a great field with growth potential!