Hugo, a cockapoo owned by Ali Kittermaster of newbie greeting card company HH Designs is achieving great stardom, only appearing on some of HH Designs’ best-selling cards, but has just debuted as the ‘poster dog’ for Pets At Home in its Christmas advertising.
Hugo is something of a ‘canine supermodel’ as he has also appeared in recent adverts for Audely Retirement Homes, Harveys Furniture and Pandora Jewellery.
Ali Kittermaster and Emily Parton started their HH Designs card company earlier this year and attended their first Ladder Club event last month to beef up on their industry knowledge.
“We have been operating for just a few months but we are already listed in more than 20 retailers in the South East,” says Ali. “We intentionally undertook a ‘soft launch’ as we wanted to make sure that we got all the systems in place, that we had the right suppliers on board and we needed to know if our product would sell.”
Ali admits that currently, “Hugo is earning more as a dog model than we are selling his image on our cards…we hope with hard work, persistence and a sprinkling of luck this may change soon!”
In addition to their photographic work, Ali latterly worked for Warner Bros, running its European licensed promotions while Emily was an account director at ad agency, Ogilvy & Mather managing a number of client advertising accounts.
As to how they became friends and set up the business, Emily reveals it was “through a mutual friend when Ali needed to borrow an extra camera for a wedding job in France a couple of years ago. She then kindly came and took photographs of my family and dogs last year. We both realised we shared a mutual love of animals and agreed that we must do something with our combined skills…hence HH Designs!”