Monday, October 16, 2006

It's All About the Shirt

SUMMARY: At Nationals, clothing makes the agility handler!

OK, it's all very well and good to talk about fixing up-contacts on dogwalks, about driving driving driving through practice snooker courses, attending Nationals practices and reviewing courses from previous years, but, really, let's admit it, Nationals is all about having the right matching outfit with the rest of your 3-dog team (assuming that you're so lucky as to have qualified in team).

My official palette. Photo colors are not the best reproductions. (Click on image for larger version.)
Tika and Skeeter have moms who are fair-skinned and fair-haired, but Brenn's handler is fair-skinned but dark-haired, and soooooo what do we do about colors? (I have not, however, edged in close enough to perform a detailed exam to determine what the basic underlying skin color is--for example, mine is vaguely yellowish compared to some people's much pinker tone). So what looks good on one might not look good on another. How to choose?

We decided early on that we wanted WendyWear for our shirts. Wendy Bruce is our local tie-dye guru. Her shirts are quite popular. We put in our order early, and decided on polos rather than t-shirts (150 t-shirts for me is quite enough, thanks, and I'll be getting another one for simply attending nationals anyway). My colors are basically "summer" colors; Carlene's (Brenn's mom) are basically winters. Of course--there are various types of winters-- and, as I suggested above, a lot goes into determining someone's palette.

I had my colors picked out individually for me by a professional in a long session in a brightly-lit room, but there are plenty of places where you can see the basic color sets for various "seasons" of coloring; for example:

So we had some polite but "um, I dunno about that" sort of color discussions, then turned it over to Wendy to make the ultimate choice, with the main principle being "subtle but not too subtle". (It's always nice to abrogate responsibility.)

Last year's team (Run-TMZ); shirts also by Wendy. And so were my previous year's team shirts. Coincidence? I think not!

Now Wendy says that the coloring is done but they're subtle enough that they probably ought to have a team name or logo or similar on them. (Commonly done on team shirts--photos of your dogs, team name, dogs names, clever mottos, and so on--but sometimes the shirts just match nicely, as in my team from last year.) But what to put? Our team name is Three's A Charm. We've sent a note back to Wendy saying, "OK, do something."

Isn't it nice to have a fashion designer one can trust for those really important social affairs, in case Joan Rivers shows up?

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