What pairs perfectly with pretty pets? The answer in Suzanne Donaldson’s mind, of the dog-driven blog “Mrs. Sizzle“, equals the perfect bon mot: their own fetching model owners. If you’re unfamiliar with the blog, Suzanne, or Sizzle herself, offers the rundown: “Mrs. Sizzle delivers fashion trends for you and your pets, great doggie products, moving rescue stories and a great source on where to adopt your next pet.” Suzanne, a creative consultant, has long mingled her vocation as a fashion insider with her calling for animals. Her latest collaboration “Dogs Days of Summer”, photographed by Peter Ash Lee and styled by Anne Christensen is just one more outcome of that match made in heaven. Models.com spoke with Suzanne to find out how it started and what’s next.
Can you explain your blog a little bit and how you started it?
I started Mrs. Sizzle about 2 1/2 years ago while I was the executive photo director of Glamour Magazine. I had recently purchased two beautiful puppies and to my utter embarrassment I was ignorant about all the issue surrounding the horror of puppy mills. I was meeting with photographer Richard Phibbs, happily talking about fashion photography when we segued into a conversation about rescuing dogs. He shared with me images he shot at the Humane Society in NY and those images became the first story I published on Mrs. Sizzle. From there I mainly used images that existed like beautiful Patrick Demarchelier portraits of his late dog or images from photographers like William Eggleston, Cindy Sherman and my late boss Robert Mapplethorpe.
Can you give me the rundown on how you got to be doing what you’re doing, that being a marketing and visual consultant…
Right after the blog started the head of international marketing for SWATCH reached out to have me consult on the “My PET and Me” collection they were about to launch. I was hired to help with the branding of the launch, social media, press and the event launch in three cities. It was a very exciting time! This led to consulting gigs with Barneys NY, MAC cosmetics and so on. Many of my current clients at the moment are pet related.
In regards to mixing your expertise in your career and this passion, how were you able to utilize that to promote your cause.
The background and relationships I had as a result of a long career in publishing and advertising enabled me to make the transition seamlessly. I have such brilliant friends and supporters who were willing to work with me to create exclusive stories for the blog. In addition the best part about what I am doing is helping so many shelter animals through photography and events. An animal has such a better chance of being adopted with a great photo. When I do shoots I try, whenever possible, to have an animal looking for a home in the shoot.
Another thing that I started is an event called “Dogs Night Out” that I hope to produce on a larger scale, especially now that Mrs. Sizzle is headed out West. Dogs night out is an evening parade the night before Clear the Shelters Day and it is a parade through town showcasing the volunteers that work at the Brookhaven Animal Shelter and the dogs up for adoption. The event raises awareness about the number of animals in the shelter showing them in a happy light as opposed to them in their cages.
I am moving out to Portland, Oregon soon to start a new job and I hope to carry the Sizzle torch out West and continue to raise awareness for shelter animals everywhere.
See “Dogs Days” in full here