Fashionable dogs walk the runway downtown

Top Stories – The Olympian – Olympia, Washington – Fashionable dogs walk the runway downtown

Toni L. Bailey/The Olympian
Laura Yu of Lacey walks her Chihuahua/corgi mix dog, Sneakers, as he models a popcorn-knit sweater during the doggy fashion show at Canvas Works on Saturday in downtown Olympia. Dogs at the event modeled fashions from author Kristi Porter’s book, “Knitting For Dogs.” Porter, formerly of Olympia, later autographed copies of her book.


By Katherine Tam

The Olympian

OLYMPIA — Residents stepped aside Saturday to make way for the models who had come downtown to sport the latest in fashion — fashion for dogs, that is.

While passers-by chuckled and dog lovers snapped pictures, the canines sauntered by on Columbia Street in colorful knit sweaters, turtlenecks, flea collars and even a pair of purple leg warmers.

“They’re bound to bring warmth and a lot of laughs to a cold damp day,” Kristi Porter said through a microphone as Bert, a 4-year-old dog, walked by in the leg warmers.

The dog fashion show was the first at Canvas Works, a downtown shop that sells all things yarn. And it was a venue to showcase the more than 20 ideas in Porter’s new book, “Knitting for Dogs.”

It wasn’t the first time wearing clothes for most of the canines in the show. Bert often wears a reflective orange poncho on dark rainy nights while Barb Bergholz’s dog, Katie, 14, usually has a scarf around her neck.

But items in the show were a bit more stylish than the dogs’ usual attire. They included a sequined sweater and a reddish-purple capelet.

Getting the pets to wear the garments proved to be an easy task for some owners, a bit more challenging for others. Bergholz, who had three dogs in the show, said one of her pets “never lets me put anything on her but she sat still and let me put this on. I was shocked.”

Jo Hovancsek’s 7-month-old cockapoo, Diogee, had never worn clothes before. So the night before the show, she performed a trial run with an old T-shirt.

“That didn’t go so well, but she did OK this morning,” Hovancsek said.

Katherine Tam covers the city of Olympia for The Olympian. She can be reached at 360-704-6869 or

©2005 Knight Ridder

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