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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
When I received photos of Violet from a Nosework odor recognition test (can be seen here: A Nosework thing called ORT ) , it dawned on me that I'm going to have a lot of photos of Violet in a light blue harness over the next few years if I keep competing in the same harness. Which led me to a whole tangent of ruminating on fashion, photography and harnesses. I wished I could sit down with you all at my kitchen table and talk about our ideas and experiences. Well, PoodleForum is our virtual kitchen table, so if you feel like sharing your thoughts, I would love to hear them.

What colors and styles photograph well?

What colors match well with different poodle colors?

Do you like patterns or stripes? Why or why not?

How does gender affect your color choices, or does it?

What shows off the dog so you say “wow, look at that dog!” Vs “wow, look at that collar/harness”? Do you prefer people notice the dog first or the C/H first?

Would you choose color differently if you were having a professional photo shoot?

Do you like to put patches with words or symbols on your dog? Do you do it just for fun or to mark a utilitarian/working dog?

What are your ideas on the intersection of grooming and collar/harnesses?

And any other thing, on topic or not, that you feel like sharing. I'll do a separate post later about some of my ideas about these things. Right now I have to groom Violet and get to nosework class.
 

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What colors and styles photograph well?
Color wise be careful about neon colors as they can sometimes come off as a different color in photographs depending on the lighting. Bold colors that stand out against the background and the dog show best, but it should not clash with the color. In my experience the big vest style harnesses do not look as good in photos for some reason.


What colors match well with different poodle colors?
Black: Medium and light blues, and deep pinks. Green goes ok.
Blue: Red, green, blue. Some reddish tans go good.
Silver: Purple, blue, certain reds and oranges.
Brown: Green, blue, some pinks.
Red & Apricot: Deep colors, purple.
Cream: Blue, green, purple, deep reds, pink.
White: White goes with most things except light yellow and brown.

Do you like patterns or stripes? Why or why not?
I like stripes the best because I have a solid colored dog and it gives her some pattern.

How does gender affect your color choices, or does it?
Yes and no. Mostly she wears blue because that is my favorite color but, if I am wanting something to show of her femininity and cuteness she wears pink.


Would you choose color differently if you were having a professional photo shoot?
Yes. When we are doing photos I want something that compliments the leash really well, and shows but does not detract from the overall picture of the dog as the focus.

Do you like to put patches with words or symbols on your dog? Do you do it just for fun or to mark a utilitarian/working dog?
I do personally like anything with writing on me or my dog, but that is a personal thing.

What are your ideas on the intersection of grooming and collar/harnesses?
Personally shorter clips can have bigger harnesses with more coverage, while if my dog were in a HCC I would put her in a very minimal harness.

To summarize the long drawn out ramble above, you want a splash of color but not to much. I am sure that whatever you do she will look awesome.
 

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Annie (black) looks fantastic in teal and raspberry and coral. Most of her stuff is one of those colours. Lime green and red and purple look nice too. Saturated colours look good on her. I often frame her face with a red or pink bandana if I want her to get approached for petting on the street. I get a lot of 'cute boy' comments if she wears red. I adore her black and red checkered bandana but she does get a lot of boy comments. If she was male, I would probably chose more green and red. I avoid pastels.

I really like dark brown latigo leather on her black coat. Enough contrast to notice it, not so much that the collar is the first thing I see. I would use latigo or red for a pro photo shoot, I think. Silver looks nice too, but I have no need for a choke chain/show lead. Black, especially leather tends to look shabby quickly next to her really dark fur.

Trixie (brown/grey) looks really good in muted and pastel colours. She has a soft pink and purple sweater and a grey sweater she always gets squealed over in. Muted blues and greens work well too. Her bright purple harness and red snowsuit don't work as well, though they would suit Annie.
 

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On a more practical concept …. I like leashes that are easily seen when doing searches which usually means a dark floor, light floor, grass, gravel, cement, macadam etc. If you drop a leash while searching (I’ve never done this but I’ve heard stories) it’s nice to see it easily.

I have not color coordinated anything but will probably do in the future. Babykins is silver and I use neon barbie doll pink leashes for her scentwork. If I was more clever, I would have different colors for different lengths so they are easier to find in my bag.

I just ordered a 10’ turquoise leash for Theo who is apricot.

When Theo is full grown I’m going to buy both dogs new collars and leashes and keep Babykins in pink and Theo in turquoise. I’m curious to see what you end up with.

With black, almost any color that’s a contrast works beautifully. I would pick your favorite from what is available. I prefer the round biothane leashes for nose work so I’m limited to working with those colors.
 
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Everyone has a different taste, here's the route/style/selection we went:

Collar: Pink with a little bling


Harness: whatever is practical, black... Neutral.

Leash: black, biothane 4' 1-2"

My parents like to walk Basil on a 6' leash around their residential streets. I like the 4' because I live in the city. The 4' 1/2" wide also isn't "standard" so Basil looks fancy. It also gives to the minimalist vibe.
 

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Galen, being almost black, can carry off almost any color and pattern. I've had him in bright blue, bright red, dark green, taupe, black, silver, turquoise, and even a tie-dye orange bandana for hunting season. He looked good in all of them. The bright colors looked cheerful and jaunty. The taupe and black looked sophisticated and restrained, like a business suit.

Daithi, being brown, doesn't seem to have quite the palette range Galen has. Red and silver (he's wearing hand me down gear right now) are just kind of meh on him. Turquoise, however, is pretty sharp. I think he might also look pretty bold in yellow. I've got a tan rolled leather collar on order for him; I have high hopes for it.

Pogo and Snarky, spotted as they were, were very difficult to dress gorgeously. Their natural bling either overwhelmed or clashed with their wardrobes. Black & white Pogo could carry off red or royal blue pretty well, but forget patterns. I wish I'd been able to get turquoise for brown & white Snarky; he probably would have rocked the look. Normally he looked best in basic black.
 

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I like to get Evelyn collars that stand out well against his predominantly cream fur and that appeal to me personally. I don't like words on collars or clothing, and I don't like harnesses with lots of coverage.

I don't take into consideration his sex when I pick colors or patterns. I've learned that people have a tendency to assume he's female on sight, regardless of what color collar he's wearing and well before I say his name. How he's groomed (or not) doesn't seem to make a difference either. So I might as well have some fun and accessorize him however I like! I try to pick collars that fit his personality. Evelyn is pure sugar (sometimes I regret not naming him Sugar tbh) and I like his collars to reflect that. My Etsy favorites list of dog collars is several pages long, but the collars picked with Evelyn in mind are more feminine than some would pick for a male dog. I'm comfortable putting him in pinks and pastels, but I also like bright blues.

I'm currently eyeing this collar and leash set, but I'm having difficulty deciding between the waffle collar and leash with icing bow or the reverse pattern combo (Might source a sailor bow instead of a bow tie. One for me and one for him):
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Oh, my, thank you all so much for talking at length about all of this. I love your perspectives.
...
Black: Medium and light blues, and deep pinks. Green goes ok.
Blue: Red, green, blue. Some reddish tans go good.
Silver: Purple, blue, certain reds and oranges.
Brown: Green, blue, some pinks.
Red & Apricot: Deep colors, purple.
Cream: Blue, green, purple, deep reds, pink.
White: White goes with most things except light yellow and brown.
EV!poodle, you have given a nice summary here. You have a good sense for color. I also had a good laugh at the thought of light yellow on a white dog- I hope a person would think that through before buying!

Annie (black) looks fantastic in teal and raspberry and coral. Most of her stuff is one of those colours. Lime green and red and purple look nice too. Saturated colours look good on her. I often frame her face with a red or pink bandana if I want her to get approached for petting on the street. I get a lot of 'cute boy' comments if she wears red. I adore her black and red checkered bandana but she does get a lot of boy comments. If she was male, I would probably chose more green and red. I avoid pastels.

I really like dark brown latigo leather on her black coat. Enough contrast to notice it, not so much that the collar is the first thing I see. I would use latigo or red for a pro photo shoot, I think. Silver looks nice too, but I have no need for a choke chain/show lead. Black, especially leather tends to look shabby quickly next to her really dark fur.
....
For Want of a Poodle, lots of good observations here that I hadn't thought of. One is the cultural interpretation of red being a boy dog color. I'm not particularly attached to shouting her gender by way of color, but I do think cultural interpretations of color as gendered is just so fascinatingly human. I also appreciate your thoughts on brown and black leather with a black dog. I recently bought an inexpensive black leather buckle collar for Violet, and the black-on-black with short ears gives her an unexpected 007 look. If the collar begins to look worn perhaps it can be given new life by putting it on my cream-colored boy.

On a more practical concept …. I like leashes that are easily seen when doing searches ...

...If I was more clever, I would have different colors for different lengths so they are easier to find in my bag.
...
Skylar, I feel your practical approach. I have a bag of performance gear, and admittedly sometimes a tangle of leashes in the back of the car- I need to be able to see what I need easily. I have 1 10' biothane leash- and I can always find it because it is the only brown leash I own. I love black gear on both my dogs, but I don't like the eye strain trying to find it in the bag.

So far my nosework leashes are different colors (x2). Hopefully I can continue this wise happenstance.

Try looking on Etsy for dog collars. There's some cool ones are there!!
Fenris, my Etsy addiction is well-documented here on PF. I love them all. I definitely want all the things, lol. That's why I love to hear about what others have purchased- somehow vicarious shopping helps me put the brakes on. "Good thing," husband says.

Everyone has a different taste, here's the route/style/selection we went:

Collar: Pink with a little bling

Harness: whatever is practical, black... Neutral.
...
Basil looks awesome in pink and black. I have a deep appreciate for the minimalist look, as long as I can have a bunch of other looks too. Violet owns a black harness so it can disappear into the blackness of her coat and allow her rhinestone-on-black collar to shine while she is out walking. Super luscious. I'm waiting for your PF class on painting dog nails so I can complete the look with pink toes.

Galen, being almost black, can carry off almost any color and pattern. ... The taupe and black looked sophisticated and restrained, like a business suit.

Daithi, being brown, doesn't seem to have quite the palette range Galen has. ...

Pogo and Snarky, spotted as they were, were very difficult to dress gorgeously. Their natural bling either overwhelmed or clashed with their wardrobes. ...
Great summary, Cowpony. You have had a large color-range of dogs! I have noticed how well camel and black look on a black dog- Burberry plaid in short. Very classic. I am a bit sad to find out that brown dogs have a smaller color palette because I hope to share a home with one someday.

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I don't take into consideration his sex when I pick colors or patterns. I've learned that people have a tendency to assume he's female on sight, regardless of what color collar he's wearing and well before I say his name. How he's groomed (or not) doesn't seem to make a difference either. So I might as well have some fun and accessorize him however I like! I try to pick collars that fit his personality. Evelyn is pure sugar (sometimes I regret not naming him Sugar tbh) and I like his collars to reflect that. My Etsy favorites list of dog collars is several pages long, but the collars picked with Evelyn in mind are more feminine than some would pick for a male dog. I'm comfortable putting him in pinks and pastels, but I also like bright blues.
...
Misteline, I applaud your willingness to dump the idea of gender colors into the trash bin. And I vote for the waffle collar with the ice cream bow. Very jaunty. I hope you'll post a closeup of him wearing it because that would be a treat. You may be interested to know that we used to have a PF member with a dog named Sugarfoot- which sticks in my memory mainly because I think it is the most adorable name.
 

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@Basil_the_Spoo please tell me you have a pair of those!
No, unfortunately. Maybe in like 30 years. I'm in a season of delayed gratification right now. I could look into nails though. Doing nails has never been on my radar since I'm a guy. We could turn to foo-foo level up a notch LOL.

Here's a french manicure...

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Topper is a black puppy who will turn blue in a year or more. I really like the color Topper's breeder picked for his first collar - bright royal blue. She included a matching leash. I found a Freedom No-Pull harness in the same color. It looks great on him, and it's the color I would have chosen for him. We may need to change it when his coat starts to clear to accentuate the blue color. Thankfully I have a year or two to think about that! His cooling vests and poodle floatation device (PFD) also are blue. He always looks more stylish than I do! Topper also looks really good in orange - we have a 15-foot orange long line for hiking and Sniffari walks in the park. He also wears an orange rain/field jacket.

I recently did a portrait-type photo of him in front of his namesake flower - lupines. (His registered name is Adelheid's Lupine Crush). The flowers nearly matched his collar! I will post it on 52 Weeks of Topper soon.
 

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During the agility championship, I saw they had different collar/leashes that looked like felt and were braided. I'm not 100% sure because we've never been to such an event. I thought of you. It looks like the agility poodles had a rope leash/collar.. of course, Pre, our winner... 1st place #1 #1

@JJ❤cavaliers . I'm assuming Carly Rae was a toy because she competed in the 8' class.
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Some have a bungee section, but most are just fleece material. The leash can be used as a tug toy to build drive and enthusiasm, easier than carrying a toy around all the time. Agility dogs often want a toy instead of treats for rewards.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
@Basil_the_Spoo Im really impressed with Pre. If you compare his time with the high in trial border collie it is just a fraction of a second difference.

Those are tug leashes- a way to have a tug toy in the ring just before/after your run to reward your dog. Violet loves to tug, and someday I’m going to have to get one for her… Competing in agility is still a few months away for her. NADAC trials are still not happening in my area, and I believe AKC agility always includes weaves which we are still perfecting. I think by September we’ll be good to go.
 
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