Celebrating its 25th birthday this year, DOGUE is bringing couture to canines all around Australia with a range of trendy and playful dog accessories.
Founder and Creative Director Simone Kingston’s first inspiration for DOGUE came in 1997 when her dog Gulliver needed a cute jumper to cover up a bad haircut! Unable to find anything in the shops that was suitable, Simone knitted one herself. As soon as the pair hit the streets of Sydney, they were repeatedly stopped by people asking where she had bought Gulliver’s fabulous knitwear from. Seeing a significant gap in the Australian market for dog lovers looking for stylish accessories, Simone’s idea for a dog boutique began to take shape.
“DOGUE has given me a creative outlet I would never have dreamed possible,” said Simone. “It’s where I indulge daily in my love of fashion, interiors, and of course, dogs.”
Twenty-five years on, DOGUE is a trusted Australian brand that has expanded to nine Boutique and Spa shops across New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria, in addition to selling wholesale and online. DOGUE accessories are known nationwide for their fun and distinctive prints that stay current with design trends, both in fashion and at home.
“We know our products work, fit and wear well, and we also like to design ranges that go together,” said Simone. “We will make a bed that matches a bowl and a collar that matches a jumper. This gives our customers flexibility with their pet accessories, mixing and matching looks to create something unique to suit their dog’s style.”
More than just a pet boutique, DOGUE not only makes its own range of branded accessories but also offers services such as grooming and daycare, establishing itself as a community spot for dog lovers to flock to.
“I am lucky to work with a great group of dog-obsessed humans. The team is clever, creative and inspiring, and we truly believe in the health and well-being of our pets. We are all extremely passionate about the brand, and proud of the values we stand for as a company,” said Simone.
From their extensive experience in retail, the DOGUE team understands what customers value in a brand – quality products that are fresh to the market featuring strong designs with individual styles. By manufacturing in Australia, the business can adapt quickly to trends and ensure the DOGUE range is always current.
“Manufacturing locally definitely gives us an edge,” said Simone. “We have more confidence in our supply infrastructure and production, we can update our product ranges more frequently, and have easy communication with our makers. These are all key factors to ensure seamless production.”
Most of DOGUE’s Australian Made products are manufactured in Melbourne, and many are meticulously crafted by hand. “We’ve been making our leather collars and leads from the same factory there for over 20 years. Figuring out the exact manufacturing specifications is an extensive process, but once we are confident with the materials, tools and shaping, we can have fun. Working with new colours and introducing new designs is the easy part,” said Simone.
As an Australian business, the DOGUE team felt it was important that their products were easily recognised as Australian Made. “We are very proud to show the Australian Made logo on our products. It enhances who we are as a company and gives our customers confidence in the quality of our products,” said Simone. “We all know it’s important to support local brands and small businesses, and customers trust the Australian Made logo.”
Reflecting on a quarter century of business, Simone says she’s amazed to see how the brand has evolved over time and the community created around it. “I feel very proud of what DOGUE has become. As a company, we encourage everyone to have fun with their pets. But for me personally, what really makes me smile is seeing a dog living their best life out and about wearing DOGUE.”
Find out more about DOGUE’s Australian Made products at www.dogue.com.au