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‘Coming Home for Christmas’ A Sneak Peak At The Products

‘Coming Home for Christmas’ A Sneak Peak At The Products – Author Amy Mcdonogh

Over the summer, Samantha and I have been working really hard on creating patterns for unique, good quality Christmas products. We have been focusing on creating carefully detailed Christmas designs. I can now reveal what products will be released for you.   

Our “Coming Home for Christmas” collection will include dog collars with matching leads, notebooks and cards and will be released in two batches. In the first batch, the dog collars and leads, four notebook designs and matching cards will be sold. The release date for the first wave of products will be on the 5th of October.

In the second batch we will release other notebook designs. But these are a surprise for now.  

These products will be sold separately as well as in gift sets to give you more options.

Dog collars and Leads

There will be dog collars with matching leads for two of your favourite dog breeds…. The Golden Retriever and the Dachshund! We have made the collars even more Christmassy by using red webbing for the inside for the Dachshund, which Sam hand dyed herself. We have sourced a skilled local seamstress which Sam uses for her other dog accessories who is based in the south of England. This supports our commitment to ethically sourced, eco-friendly and high quality products.  

Key Features of the Dog Collars:

  • Fully adjustable
  • Made from 100% Cotton
  • All fabric is dyed using water based dyes
  • Antique brass D ring, side release buckle and adjustable slider
  • Cute Dachshund and Golden Retriever patterns.

Key Features of the leads

  • Length is 110cm
  • Made from 100% Cotton
  • D ring and swivel clip
  • Strong durable webbing which has been hand dyed

First batch of notebooks

We will be selling the superior slim lined A5 notebooks in four different designs. Two repeat designs and two placement designs to give you more options to mix and match for gifts.

You can use these exclusive products for making your Christmas present or card lists, keeping a record of your favourite Christmas recipes, guest lists or the never ending Christmas “to do” lists. Let us know what you use yours for!

I previously created three repeat designs and we asked your help as to what design you would most like to see in our collection. It was a VERY close call, but the winning design is shown to the right. Thank you for your input in this project!  

Christmas Cards

We will also be selling these four different card designs, each with one of your most loved breeds. You can mix and match designs or buy the card with your favourite dog breed on. These cards will come in Dachshund, Golden Retriever, Black Labrador and Beagle. All 4 are designed to match the notebooks which will be sold as gift sets. The perfect gift for loved ones this Christmas.

We are so excited that these products will be available soon. If you want to be in the know and to be kept in the loop for when these will be available, click the link below to sign up to Sam’s newsletter.

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Coming Home For Christmas – Starting The Design Process

Coming Home For Christmas – Starting The Design Process

Mine and Amy’s project is coming along nicely and we are well into the design process. In this blog post I will share with you the design decisions we have made and why and where we are up with creating this fab collection for Christmas 2020!

The main colours are a light grey and a dark chic blue with pops of red and green

Designing the main pattern

At the beginning of the process, we divided and conquered. This was the best way as we were still in Lock down at this point so it was impossible for us to be in the same room to work on this together. We have however had great communication throughout through Skype!

We both did our own patterns but in a similar way to how I do my main collections. We chose to mimic my signature style – the grid formation I do in all of my designs. As we developed our collection, we thought it would be interesting to have 2 different patterns within the collection. One by Amy and one by me. I think because we are both strong textiles designers and because of the current situation with COVID and working separately, we wanted to both have a go at a designing a print.

What unifies the patterns is the composition, the colour palette and the similar elements. I am pretty chuffed with the colour palette. The main colours are a light grey and a dark chic blue with pops of red and green. A classy chic Christmas collection is born!

Developing the Collection

After we created the main pattern, we took elements from it to create accompanying placement designs and other patterns. It really has been great so far, as we have had so much time to play with developing the collection, which is not always a luxury!

Now that we have the main designs, we started this week to think about which ones will look great on the products we are going to produce. We have decided to do a range of notebooks and cards alongside dog collars and matching leads! We are so excited to be doing dog accessories, especially as they will be Christmas themed. Your dogs are going to look fabulous!

Above, you can see the designs for the dog collars. We decided to do the most popular breeds out of the 4 we chose, the Golden Retriever and the Dachshund. The designs are taken from the main patterns and then placed into a stripe to form the shape of the accessories. Me and Amy are really happy with these and we can’t wait to get them made.

In our next blog post, we will talk about our final design decisions and we will start to reveal what you will be able to buy in October!

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Amy Lynne Design- Painting the four dogs for Coming Home for Christmas

Amy Lynne Design- Painting the four dogs for Coming Home for Christmas

For this blog post I am going to pass you over to the amazingly talented Amy Lynne as she talks about her painting process and why we have chosen the below dog breeds for our new collection!

About the four dog breads that will be in our collection

Me and Sam together decided on four dog breads to feature in our collection. We made this choice after finding out what the nations top 20 favourite breads were! loyal Labradors, gorgeous golden retrievers, endearing dachshunds and loving beagles were our final choice. We chose four images to paint that would show the compelling natures of mans best friend!

The beagle below is actually my cousins sons dog called “Tonks”. Like all dogs, Tonks is full of character and brings us all so much joy! I felt this was the perfect opportunity to include her in our collection.

What is my painting style?

Detail, detail and lots of detail!


Ever since I was little I have been fascinated by the minute components that make up an object or living thing. I believe there is so much beauty in the detail of nature that I aim to reflect this in my artwork. 
I aim to capture the personality and expression of an animal or person in my paintings. I believe that all humans and animals have been uniquely made with their own character.

What materials have I used to paint the dogs?

I have used Windsor and Newton professional watercolours to paint the dogs. The pigmentation in these watercolours are high, resulting in stronger colours. I love using watercolours as it is such a versatile medium that allows me to blend colours together and also add fine detail. 
I also use Windsor and Newton series 7 Kolinsky Sable brushes and Arches 100% cotton hot press watercolour paper. I find these materials help to create beautiful results!

What is my painting process?

I begin by doing something called “stretching the paper” and taping it onto a board. Secondly, I sketch out the image using a faint pencil line. Thirdly, I paint a base layer of the lightest colour and whilst the paint is damp I blend darker tones in. When that is dry, I finish by adding in detail with little paint and a very small brush! I tend to paint small sections at a time to allow me to focus in on different areas. 


Keep up to date with the development of our project on this blog and social media! She is incredibly skilled and it’s a joy to be collaborating with her 🙂 

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Designing My New Eco-Friendly Dog Collars and Leads

Designing my new eco-friendly dog collars and leads

I am so excited! I have started a journey where I am now designing accessories for dogs. For me, this really is a dream come true. Since I started the business back in 2017, It has always been on my mind but I just wasn’t quite sure how to approach the idea. There were a lot of unknowns like how do I find someone to manufacture all of these products? What sizes and designs do I do? Where do I source everything? Creating this range was a learning process and involved a lot of experimentation, research and taking the time to learn about the needs of our fellow companions.

Getting back to basics

At the start of the design process, I started researching all of the different types of collars and leads that are on the market currently. There are so many different products for sale in all different shapes and sizes but none that were all of the following:

Eco-friendly, affordable, beautiful and practical

I wanted to make sure that the end products achieved all 4 of these key elements. I think its so important now more than ever to make beautiful and affordable eco-friendly products accessible to everyone. With these key elements in mind, I dug out my sketchbook and began sketching what I imagined the products to look like.

Putting it all together

I decided comfort and durability were a big part of the designs, as these accessories would undergo a lot of daily wear and tear. With this in mind, I picked a tough webbing and a twill fabric that are made from 100% cotton. Making the collars and leads breathable, durable and strong. I have also added antique brass and silver metal finishes. These include the buckles, D rings and the tri-glade adjusters. The tri-glade allows for the collar to be adjusted so you can have the perfect fit for your dog. Ranging from 35-65cm, the collar will grow with your pet.

For the lead, I have added a great feature. A padded handle. We all know dogs love to pull, especially when there is food or a friend involved, so I decided to make the experience a bit more comfortable for you. I have used 100% cotton wadding and sustainable cork that is handmade in Portugal to cover the handle. I have also added a D ring so you can attach a poop bag, a bag of treats or your keys.

All of these great features make the products extra special.

When and where can I get the new accessories?

I will be making matching collars and leads for the end of August. They will be available in the Golden Labrador, Black Labrador, Chocolate Labrador and my favourite the Woodland pattern.

They will only be available in the one size for now but watch this space as I will be developing patterns, sizes and styles in the future!

*ENDED* You will be able to pre-order on my website soon. If you pre-order you will get 20% off the RRP. For information on when the pre-orders will be open sign up to my newsletter for more information.

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Reflection of 2019 and What’s coming in 2020

Reflection of 2019 and What’s coming in 2020


This year has been a bit of a whirlwind in terms of gaining a style within my work, deciding where I wanted to take the business and understanding that anything is possible if I put my mind to it! Working for yourself provides a lot of challenges and a lot of moments where you’re wondering if this is the right career but! I am more confident than ever in my work and the direction I am going in.

Reflection

This year has really been a blast and I wouldn’t have been able to achieve so much of it without everyone who supports me and my small business! My biggest achievement is that I have worked on a collection of patterns and I have gained a style which you now strongly see throughout my work. This is through sticking to a colour palette, a certain painting style and a certain composition for my patterns. My work now feels more uniformed and cohesive.

I also started a relationship with a UK manufacturer who is helping me to create my eco-friendly products. I thought the whole process would be difficult and challenging but I feel really blessed with my manufacturer as they communicate well, deliver excellent quality products and listen to what I want. I have now put in a HUGE order with them which is very scary. BUT it is also very exciting and I can’t wait to show you what I have been up to. I am so excited to have a manufacturer that can help me deliver excellent quality eco-friendly products that are 100% cotton and who uses eco printing methods.

As well as pattern design and producing products, I have discovered that I love to create canvas and digital based art which is influenced by my surroundings in Brighton and anywhere that I travel to that has beautiful vistas and landscapes. Creating this kind of art is a way for me to release my creativity in different ways and I can’t wait to show you what I have been making next year. This work will be first shown in Gallery BN5 in February.

Looking to 2020 – New Products, Shows and Exhibitions

I have been busy planning 2020 and I have plenty of interesting things to tell you about! I have booked plenty of craft fairs, one of the big ones being the Country Living Magazine Fair. I can’t wait to be amongst amazing talent and meet like minded people where I can gain new friendships. The fair will be on for 4 days and I will be showcasing my brand new range which I hope you will love as much as I do.

As well as the events below, I hope to book more shows as the year goes on and to be in more galleries and shops across the UK. I hope you will stick with me on this journey of mine, I can’t wait to show you what I will do next!

Gallery BN5

1st February – 29th February, Henfield

For one month I will be showcasing my brand new collection of Sussex influenced Illustrations. This collection will include beautiful landscapes, pubs and wildlife that you can find in the South Downs.

I will be showing for the first time my digital art with machine embroidery embellished over the top. These pieces of art will be available framed and unframed.


Country Living Magazine Spring Fair

23rd April – 26th April, Alexander Palace, London

I will be exhibiting for the first time at the Country Living Fair in London! For 4 days, I will be showcasing my brand new range of homewares and gifts!

You will find my hand painted dogs and woodland patterns alongside a brand new pattern featuring cute rabbits and carrots! Some of the products that will be available are cushions, oven gloves, aprons, notebooks, cosmetic and tote bags. All of these products will be available on my website after the show.


The Handmade Affair, Shopfest

15th March & 14th June – Denbies Wine Estate, Dorking

I will be exhibiting at Denbies Wine Estate in the beautiful Surrey Hills. The first one will be the first place I will be showing my new range of homewares and gifts so make sure you’re there!

Have a great Christmas everyone and I will you in 2020!