Saturday, September 20, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Crafters make comfortable clothes for tiny canines

By
From page C1 | September 30, 2012 |

In a roundabout way, the old adage “Necessity is the mother of invention” could be an apt description of how Vacaville husband and wife Dan and Paula Clanton‘s craft concept Prissy Pup Petwear came into being.

“In 2010 we went to a craft fair at Apple Hill and had our Chihuahua named Delilah with us and there were so many people and dogs there we were afraid she might get trampled or bitten,” Dan Clanton said. “I happened to walk by a booth where a woman was selling petwear and bought a sling that you could put your pet in and carry around like a baby. So we bought one out of necessity and the lady charged us $33. Paula and I thought we could make a better one and Prissy Pup Petwear was born.”

If a trained seamstress and experienced tailor had the idea to start a business making clothing and other comfort items for small canines it might seem logical. However, the Clantons had no background whatsoever in those trades.

Dan Clanton retired from the California Department of Corrections in 2010 after working for 28 years as a correctional officer and sergeant. Paula works as a kindergarten/first-grade teacher at Crescent Elementary School in Suisun City.

To channel negativity from his work environment creatively, Dan Clayton performed in community theater throughout his entire career  and through his stage connections met local singer/actress/director and most importantly theater costumer Barbara McFadden.

“I got on eBay and found a combo pack of sewing machines — a regular sewing machine and an embroidery sewing machine and I ordered them,” Dan Clanton said. “Then we asked Barbara McFadden to show us how to use them and she came over and gave us lessons.”

The Clantons also took lessons at the senior center and were soon proficient enough to start experimenting with different designs.

They filed for a business license in December 2010, just two months after buying the fateful sling for Delilah. They hit the craft fare circuit and through trial and error discovered what items were in demand and which ones were not. They narrowed down their offerings and came up with a signature item called a Canine Cuddler.

“The Cuddler has a thick cowl neck and a little sleeve for the front legs with a long piece on the back that goes to the tail and a piece of elastic that goes around the tummy,” Dan Clanton said. “It keeps those little dogs that shiver in the winter nice and toasty. You put a Cuddler on them and they are happy as clams. It’s mainly for comfort, but our middle dog, Kiki, is high-strung and when we put a Cuddler on her, it calms her right down.”

While the Clantons’ respective professions may not be directly related to their business venture, after reflection they could see where certain aspects helped in launching their literally mom and pop (they have a daughter in college) operation.

“As a teacher of small children I definitely have a lot of patience and I guess I try to transfer the patience I have to have in my classroom to when we are sewing because we really try to make everything perfect,” Paula Clanton said. “We want to put out a good product. We learned as we went and no one was more surprised than us at our success. We made our first Cuddler together — it was a joint effort between me, Dan and Barbara McFadden.”

“When I worked at the prison, they had an operation called the Blind Project where inmates would read and record books onto CDs and I was the officer that ran that program for two years,” Dan Clanton said. “I was also president of the Board of Directors for the nonprofit that oversaw them for 10 years and that experience helped me when we started our own business.”

“Another thing that helps us on the circuit is Dan’s personality because he is so comfortable in front of crowds,” Paula Clanton said. “At events I pretty much take a back seat and let him do all the talking. I think that definitely relates to his years on the stage.”

The Clantons have been married for 28 years. They said the togetherness they find in a shared interest is an added bonus.

“The best part is just having this hobby with Dan. We go to the fabric store and all the women love him there. They just go crazy over him,” Paula Clanton said. “We get our supplies, go home and sit side by side at our sewing machines and sew and talk and listen to music.”

Dan and Paula Clantons have three Chihuahuas, the aforementioned Delilah and Kiki as well as one named Bella. They use them to model their goods on their website, although Bella has not made it there yet because she “has not gone through runway training,” according to Dan Clanton.

The short-term goals of the Prissy Pup Petwear owners are to attend the Art, Wine and Chocolate Festival on Oct. 6 in Suisun City. Long-term plans include to perhaps sell their items in pet stores.

While the slogan of their business is “Petwear designed with your small pet in mind,” the Clantons will make their products for a bigger pooch as a special order if the customer provides exact measurements.

“We don’t discriminate,” Paula Clanton said. “We like big dogs, too.”

Just who does what in their business, like most decisions the Clantons have made about their venture, was a matter of trial and error, but they now have it down.

“I am the Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer,” Dan Clanton said. “She is the Chief Executive Officer that tells me what to do. It seems to be a successful business model so far.”

Reach Fairfield writer Tony Wade at getthelowdown@sbcglobal.net.

Prissy Pup Petwear

365-1199

www.prissypup.com

Tony Wade

Tony Wade

Tony Wade is the slightly older yet infinitely more handsome brother of long-time DR columnist Kelvin Wade
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

Solano jobless rate drops, jobs rise

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A1

 
 
Memorial focuses on hope, healing from addiction

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

Vacaville High graduate shines at tech event

By Brad Stanhope | From Page: A2

 
New law aimed at urban water district reports

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3

 
Travis celebrates KC-10′s 20 years at base

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Highway 37 detours in place

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3

 
Maintenance begins on Rio Vista Bridge Sunday

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A4

 
Mother gives late daughter a voice by helping others

By Susan Winlow | From Page: B8 | Gallery

 
Fairfield police log: Sept. 18, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

Suisun City police log: Sept. 18, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

 
.

US / World

Record-setting retardant used on California fire

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
UC campus chancellors granted hefty pay raises

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Brown vetoes diaper changing-station bills

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Oakland mother charged in cocaine death of son, 2

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

California man accused of killing fellow gym-goer

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
California school gender equity ruling upheld

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

State to ban smoking at home day cares

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Driver of stolen van that hit dog gets prison time

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

License plate scanner networks capture movements

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Feds approve California’s immigrant license words

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5 | Gallery

Fence-jumper makes it into the White House

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Florida town knew shooter had troubled past

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Daughter calls Utah doctor a monster at sentencing

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
3 guilty in Ga. salmonella-tainted peanut trial

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Fierce fighting in Yemeni capital kills 120

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Sierra Leone begins 3-day Ebola lockdown

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Ambush suspect could be aided by dense woods

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
France joins US against Islamic State over Iraq

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

After vote to stay in UK, Scots must heal divide

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
.

Opinion

Lots of services available for Solano veterans

By Ted Puntillo | From Page: A8

 
Cheers, jeers for the week of Sept. 14-20, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: A8

Editorial cartoons for Sept. 20, 2014

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Fairfield Ford boosts animal adoption efforts

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8

.

Living

Today in History: Sept. 20, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Sept. 20, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Horoscopes: Sept. 20, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A7

 
Make sure you get educated during Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A7

Signs indicate California recovery will last

By Thomas Elias | From Page: A8

 
.

Entertainment

 
Fallon to pay up, broadcast show in Chicago

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B9

 
.

Sports

Big plays in second half lift Vanden past Center

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B1

 
Legs power Mustangs in win over Falcons

By Nick DeCicco | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Indians score late but still fall to Panthers

By Marcus Lomtong | From Page: B1

 
A’s Lester holds Phillies to 5 hits in 7 innings in 3-1 victory

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Stewart slogs through tough day at New Hampshire

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Rio Vista gets easy football win over Delta

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

Keselowski wins pole at New Hampshire

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Gordon has suspension reduced to 10 games

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

After NFL, baseball addresses domestic violence

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Goodell: ‘Same mistakes can never be repeated’

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Kershaw gets 20th win as Dodgers pound Cubs 14-5

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Raiders could be down 2 starters on defense

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Sharks open with new vibe after playoff collapse

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
49ers’ Davis, McDonald questionable for Sunday

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
This date in sports history for Saturday, Sept. 20, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

.

Business

The Kuro taste: Peppery tang and hint of squid ink

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
Pabst Brewing to be sold to Russian company

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

China fines GlaxoSmithKline $492M for bribery

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
Procter & Gamble cancels on-field NFL promotion

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

California adopts olive-oil labeling standards

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4, 1 Comment

 
Yahoo rakes in another jackpot from Alibaba’s IPO

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

Alibaba stock soars in jubilant trading debut

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
.

Obituaries

Allie M. Zell-Jones

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
George Junior Rhode

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Charles Randolph Orr

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
Corazon Libunao Thompson

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

.

Comics

Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
.

Home Seller 09/20/14

Average US 30-year mortgage rate at 4.23 percent

By The Associated Press | From Page: HSR2

New Standard Pacific models in Vacaville

By Daily Republic | From Page: HSR3

Real estate transactions for Sept. 20, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: HSR3