We all know by now that my love for tweed really does know no bounds… It’s a classic, and looks fabulous on Alfie. Now, Imagine my excitement when the most gorgeous tweed products start appearing on my Instagram feed back in July. I instantly fell in love, so much so that Alfie hasn’t worn anything else since.
Today I must share with you Collar and Tweed. Based in the Lake District, owner Claire creates luxury dog products full of country charm. Specialising in Bow Ties and Neckerchiefs made from the finest of materials, your dog really will be dressed for any occasion… From the gorgeous countryside to the big city.
High Quality Products
When it comes to bow ties, I am not afraid to admit I am a bit of a snob. For me they must be good quality. I like them to be nice and sturdy, so they always keep their shape – no matter how much Alfie tries to test them. Attachment is also an important factor, I will always opt for elastic as it is much easier to just slip onto Alfie’s collar and I know it is fully secure.
Collar and Tweed also create a selection of luxury neckerchiefs. Something very unique is that they have two different styles of attachment [perfect], so you have the tradition tie around neckerchief and the collar attachment. Alfie can only pull off the tie around, as it seems to enhance his giant muscles without him looking too stocky haha!
Pair them with leather
Clashing colours are a thing of the past, complete the look by pairing them with a traditional leather collar… It’s important to let the bow tie do the talking!
Like always, I felt a good question and answer session was needed… What better way to get to know Claire and Collar & Tweed?
What was the inspiration behind Collar & Tweed?
“The inspiration behind Collar and Tweed comes from our love of tweed, beautiful country prints and our dogs. Both my husband and I have always loved tweed, its long connection with the Scottish and English countryside, it’s classic elegance makes you nostalgic for days filled with long walks followed by curling up in a lovely leather chair by the fire with a good book and a soggy dog at your feet. Our home and own wardrobes are full of tweed, why not extend that to the dogs?
Initially, we looked to buy tweed products from other designers, but I’ve always loved sewing and design, made my own soft furnishings and clothes, so I thought I’d try a few ideas out. After lots research and several weeks of trailing bits of threads and tweed through the house, I finally had products I loved our dogs in.”
Do you have a favourite piece?
“My most favourite pieces are the tweed bow ties, they are such fun to make and stay looking great even on my two very busy spaniels!”
I love that you create all the products yourself, where did you learn this? or are you completely self-taught?
“Both my Mother and Mother-in-law have always sewn, in fact some of my earliest memories are of my own Mother sewing away into the wee small hours! Over the years they’ve taught me some dressmaking skills, the rest is self-taught through much trial and error.”
Where do you source your tweeds from?
“I’m always on the look out for new and unusual tweeds. Some of my favourite tweeds came from a lovely kilt maker in Inverary who has tweeds specially woven for her on the Isle of Skye. Our main supplier is a little mill up on the Isle of Harris.
Living so close to the Scottish Border, we can be up into Scotland quite quickly and I never come home without some interesting local tweeds”
I love following your two gorgeous spaniels on Instagram, tell us a bit about them.
“We have two of the silliest spaniels ever, we love them to bits and couldn’t be without our ‘velco’ dogs! Willow was our first spaniel, she comes from a long line of lovely gun dogs, and she is so wonderful we wanted to keep her line going. Willow’s sole aim in life is to be good and make us happy, her tan eyebrows make her look worried a lot of the time.
Ivy, her daughter, is everything we could have hoped for, with a good dash of mischievousness thrown in. They are incredibly patient with me as I’m often using them as dog mannequins, getting them to sit still while I drape fabric over them, check measurements and of course take lots of photographs.”
Do you have any new products we should watch out for?
“New products? Well I do have a few things up my sleeve, but it’s very much in the research phase. For now I’m focusing on the scarves for winter. We had a research trip to Edinburgh and I have some new samples to consider, so hopefully I can make some new winter scarves soon.”
I hope you have enjoyed that little insight into Collar and tweed, I’m certain you will see a lot of their products on Alfie… I am obsessed!
Emma & Alfie xox