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Hello everyone! It's been quite some time since I've posted a thread. I have always wondered something, and have been dying to get peoples' opinions. PLEASE don't take offense to this question...I have just been so curious to know.

Why do most dog handlers at shows dress so, for lack of a better word, "frumpily"? I know there is a dress code at shows, but so many women dress as though they just walked out of a library from 1982.

Opinions???

I hope everyone is well!!

Alex & Hess
 

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LOL! @ The Dog Show Fashion Police!

Seriously, what I think of as frumpy is not what I see women wearing in the ring.

Professional and neat show respect for the judge and the event... the level of formality should match the formality of the judge. Handlers are there to show the dog... this means NOT drawing attention to oneself! One chooses the color(s) and style which best show off the dog... a handler is kind of like an accessory for the dog.
 

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handlers who are men usually wear suits, and women, from what i usually see, are pant/skirt suits, skirt + blouse or slacks + blouse combos.. unless we're talking nationals, then for some reason, prom attire seems to come out of the wood work.

i agree that the handler isn't there to look "good", they're there to make the dog look good. wearing heels and a mini dress may look appealing in a club, but it sure isn't appropriate in the ring. you have to dress comfortably along with making sure your clothing is appropriate for the particular venue, not including making sure it compliments the dog.
 

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I got told off for talking about this on another forum the other day :)

It's all a matter of opinion, but I hate people dressing sloppily in the ring or dressing in appropriately! Ita awful too see a larger lady running her dog and looking like she's going to fall out of her top, or has her belly hanging out, or is wearing shorts and t.shirt at championship level! I do think you can be smart and comfortable.

I think it looks like you're not taking it seriously if you look a mess; it looks like you have no pride in yourself or in your dogs. I'm not saying wearing a full blown suit to every show, but I think you should look smart and compliment your dog. I also think it improves he overal presentation of your dog and improves yor confidence.

Another pet peve is black dog and black clothes :)
 

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LOL, this is a total double standard on my part, because I haven't worn a dress in years...but I think it looks terrible to see women showing dogs in pants. I'm a traditionalist, I think woman should wear a nice outfit that includes a skirt of some kind if they're going to handle. It makes a *big* difference in the overall picture.

People can say the judge should see the dog, not the handler, and to a certain extent that's true. The handler should never OUTSHINE the dog. But anyone who thinks a nicely dressed, slender and graceful handler doesn't have an edge is crazy. It's a dog SHOW-and part of that involves presentation.

Breeder judge Linda Krukar always is *very* nicely dressed when she shows her dogs. So is Vicki Seiler. Marj is always in nice looking clothes that also look very comfy. So they're not ALL frumpy.
 

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There are three types of folk who go to shows here in Spain (or so it seems).

The first set wear jeans and shirt, maybe even a teeshirt this includes some of the women but not many.

Some of the women look as if they are about to go out for the evening, little black dresses or slinky skirts (that invariably have a tear in them up the back after a days running around) and tight tops. (not pretty when they are big women).

And then the last group whom we have taken to calling the 'nice boy brigade'. OOOhhhhh they are dressed so nice. (they always have small dogs, like Poms and Chi's for some reason). They wear labelled suits. Have impeccable hair, trimmed goatees or pencil thin sideburns. They have just the right amount of fake tan and smell of Armani Code or Issy Miyake.

Honestly it is worth going to the shows here just to watch the people.
 

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I will have to google those names and take a look!

I always wear a light grey, cream or camel 'pant suit' I think you call it, so trousers and a suit jacket, wih a smart girly top underneath. Mostly because it's normally FREEZING and/or raining and I can stick thermals on underneath. In the summer I might be adventurous and try a skirt suit or a dress :)

I remember seing a photo of an American handler in a white smart dress, kind of 50s style, she looked beautiful and showed the dog beautifully. Very attention grabbing, I wish I still had the picture it was on an online US magazine website...

People wearing black make me automatically look carefully at the top line, since ive heard people try to use it for this purpose :) I've also heard some people wear red for physiological reasons?
 

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I agree with this. Its not even just the outfit its how you present yourself. Its nice to look professonal.

When everyone in the ring is nicely dressed and then one looks like she just rolled out of bed, her clothes were crumpled in a pile and she just threw them on and left.
It's really noticable next to everyone else.
 

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More than anything, learn the value of a good sports bra.
I was wearing a new bra at obedience class last night. At the end of the evening, I said to a couple of other club members "Well, I learned something new tonight ... this bra doesn't work!" Let's just say it won't be attending any more dog activities.

One look I don't like at shows is tops with no sleeves, and the elastic on the armband just cutting into skin. Really unattractive.
 

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When everyone in the ring is nicely dressed and then one looks like she just rolled out of bed, her clothes were crumpled in a pile and she just threw them on and left.
How come it's a "she"?

Just pointing out that sometimes someone is caught offguard with the shortage of their usual handler, and gets roped into taking the dog in when they least expected to do so. Although I guess one should always expect the unexpected, but it does happen sometimes.
 

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How come it's a "she"?

Just pointing out that sometimes someone is caught offguard with the shortage of their usual handler, and gets roped into taking the dog in when they least expected to do so. Although I guess one should always expect the unexpected, but it does happen sometimes.
Sorry, I was talking about something I actually witnessed lol
 

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I think some people just don't see how they look. A lot of the handlers are quite large and frankly, a skirt above the knees is not going to look good especially if one bends over, as in the above photos. My feeling is you can't go wrong with a pair of black slacks that are tailored to flatter your body shape...one pair is all you need.
 

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This thread is hilarious! I've often wondered the same thing. :D I'm no pro...but I feel like if I were chosing an outfit for a handler I'd want the colour to compliment the dog - ie for showing a red I'd stay away from full chroma reds, oranges and yellows, and either chose a soft tone that matches the dog's coat or the split complement - blue-green or blue-violet. It's all well and good to say that the judge is only supposed to look at the dog, but in reality their eye is absorbing the whole picture and if they don't compliment each other it will have an affect on how the judge feels, regardless of whether they want it to or not. As an example, the girl who won the scholarship show I was just in for school dressed all in black with a blue and green scarf that matched her presenation boards, while she presented her concept. Obviously she didn't win because of it but the colour coordination definitely helps on a subconscious level.
 
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