Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Chiswick House Gardens Dog Show Oct' '14

Chiswick House Gardens dog show Is traditionally Holly&Lils last outdoor show of the year.  And usually is a day of Sun and Fun... and this year it was with bells on.  We had to get there early to set our little stall up. 

We had decided to enter the dogs in a couple of events this year; just for fun.... Holly went first in Best Veteran... but failed to place.  I am so tempted to use talc on her next time to grey her up? Still we had fun trying - though it just feels WRONG to lose.  

At first the day was spent saying hello to old friends.  Many not needing new collars as their existing Holly&Lils looks so lovely still.
Lupin came and we took my picture with her and one of her best friends, Bessie Boo, who is on our H&L cards as well.  A real beauty and she has even been to Luskentyre and visited our weaver in her Holly&Lil collar.  What Fun!

Rachel came to buy a matching lead for her dogs Harris Tweed that she had bought last year - he still looks a dream in it and Rachel says she gets stopped a lot by people asking where it was from.  Tweed Collars

Gus fancied a few of the gals ... stunners in Pink Brightside from a year or so ago.  How gorgeous do they look?
Brightside and Safari collars

Sid did his best to steal the limelight from the head turners Micky and Rosie, in his bespoke Harness with Red Bow.
 Rosie was looking far too gorgeous to be upstaged in her new Brocade collar however!
I do think we may have to invent a Mission Impossible blow up button - so the collars do not last so long; we started thinking we may have saturated the 'Chiswick' market!

But then the new customers came to Holly&Lillify their adorable dogs... cue some more delicious pics of dogs in our collars...

Ant, of Ant & Dec fame, came with Hurley and his charming wife Lisa to try on a few.  Lisa had been on our website and had plans for Cowspot and Red but fell in love with the Zebra and Orange once we got it on  Hurley and that is what she went for in the end.  Gorgeous boy!

This little girl went for Zebra too for her wee one.  She was thrilled to hear Ant had picked the same one!

Olives owners had thought of purple or lime for her - but once they saw how the Pink 'Girled' her up, whilst still being super funky, they decided that was definately the one for her.  She was such a sweet little lady. 

Cookie one of our shop regulars came and fell in love with the Charley Chau beds next door

Next up to show was my beautiful boy Augustus.  It was hard as Christine from Charley Chau was judge so she told Rageh Omar, from BBC news, that she had to excuse herself from judging.
Luckily Rageh adored Gustus so he was still placed third.... WE WOZ ROBBED!
Gus seemed hugely pleased with himself however. So pleased he ran riot after the show ended and collapsed with heat stoke - VERY SCAREY - but he seems fine now.
Megan, Cookies owner, came to say Hello to baby girl Holly Dog!
This wee boy is only 5 months so we told the owner to wait till at least Christmas for his first Holly&Lil.  But we tested out a few options.

Plum dog came to tell us about her book that is coming out soon.  And to buy a Blue & Turquoise Brightside.  Sweet gal.

So another lovely day and the end of our open air show season.  It was really lovely thanks to all the Chiswick House Garden Dog Show organisers.  A triumph!
See you all again next year.

Monday, 22 September 2014

Holly&Lil Dog Show 2014 - Part of Bermondsey Street Festival

Once a year our whole street comes out and parties.  Everybody in the street takes part and we have a Fashion Show, Dale shows his Bees and his delicious Honey and the restaurants set up stalls serving wonderful food and drink, etc.  Holly&Lil part in all of this is their very own dog show.
The BSAG had moved us out of our usual home in Tanner Street to Leathermarket Gardens this year as the venue gave more room to the spectators.

The emphasis this year was as much on the Losers as the Winners, as Gus and I had flunked badly in a show a week or so back and it really hurt when we did not even get placed.  Slinking out of the ring unloved was rather vile - so this year I had loads of WE WOZ ROBBED rosettes made and also hand baked some yummy treats just for those who did not win.

It was my first year compering as Dale, Lilys owner, who had been in Cambridge Footlights was a natural and had been such a huge part of our success previously.  I did not want to get some sad wanna be replacement for him so decided to do it myself with the wonderful Robert Alleyne as Judge.  H&L have known Robert quite a few years since we met him at a Macmillan Dog Day when he was helping launch the Marley and Me film.  He was very taken with Eddie and Holly and Lily that day.  Robert had spent many years on the popular BBC show Dog Borstal.

Donna Marie introduced us in her own style and Simon Bulpin and his three Italian Greyhounds led us in dressed as Swiss Guards.. Mad but rather wonderful.

The show just whizzed by and once I had got over my nerves and Verbal Diarrhoea I really enjoyed it and I think most of the contestants and Spectators did too!
All of the Els Angels said they would remind me to take my pinny off ... did they....?!? NO - not a good look!


Harry a Sussex Spaniel shown by Bernie was one of Roberts personal favourites.  He said they summed up totally what the show was all about; the wonderful relationship between owner and dog.
He said the communication between them was a joy.
Maisies owners had heard me being interviewed on the BBC radio Barking Hour.  They had come down specially as they were desperate to get a WE WOZ ROBBED rosette - Robert was happy to help them out.
Claire amazed herself and the rest of us by blubbing with pride when Marvin won the Eddie Award, best pedigree boy.
Meryl the Boston was pretty as a picture and won  The Lily Award for Prettiest Gal

from young pupstars to 12year old seniors all were welcome in the show.

Holly only wanted to play ball with the Els Angels

But Gus helped Mary hand out the We Woz Robbed rosettes and Made by Mum treats
With typical organised chaos we have managed NOT to have pics of our wonderful wee winner - Mabel our youngest ever entrant let alone winner - a 16week old Cockerpoo.  CONGRATULATIONS!

Robert and I did our best and I think everyone had fun.  
Robert said he wished I could compere more of the shows he does - (THANK YOU) - and wrote on his Facebook Page... 
''I have never laughed so much at a dog show EVER!!!! My thanks to my amazingly funny steward Elaine, who made the show"
Well nearly everyone - there were a few people who thought I talked too much, (there's a shocker?!).  Our usual brand of organised chaos was called 'shambolic' by one - though we kept to schedule and finished early!  And the emphasis on the Losers may have been taken the wrong way I guess - but truly I meant no harm and hoped everyone had the best of days. Certainly Beezle and Daddy seemed to be cherishing their rosettes
Daddy - he woz robbed!
Beezle - he was robbed!
So thanks to all who came and to all my Els Angels, Chelsea, Alex, Connor, Jo and Mary and Chris our one volunteer this year! Also to Angela who did what she could to make the area work well. Looking forward to next year already