Houndstooth Pets

Elegartsy Designer Dog Collars


* You’re in the right place  if you’re a dog parent CRAAA-AAAVING a collar for your dog that looks and feels as fabulous as your brand new unique outfit from your favorite boutique.

* You’re in the right place  if you’re a fashionista and you love art.

* You’re in the right place  if you adore the HGTV channel and love a beautiful home that gives you a sense of pride and joy.

* You’re in the right place  if your pup gives you unconditional love and you want your pup to look and feel his/her very best.

{If you’re okay with your pup wearing  a dog collar that has an itchy nylon backing that could scratch your pup’s neck, and maybe isn’t the best quality and sort-of looks cute, this isn’t the place for you.}

I’m Kathleen Naomi Atkins – Head Fashion Darling of Beautiful Pup Couture at Houndstooth Pets

located in Chicago, Illinois

As a fashionpreneur artist and fiery animal lover, I design and hand make ‘elegartsy’ dog collars.  

ELE . GARTSY    elegant and artsy, with sprinkles of earthy, serene, classy, fun, beautiful. 

My mission is to make your pup look like he/she walked out of a Ralph Lauren Magazine – Down-home comfort with quality and artsy stylish designs that are not only picture perfect, but awaken a special twinkle in your dog.  The other two reasons for starting this business….  bring awareness to animals in need, and share natural pet healthcare methods that have worked for my animals.


Beauty – my designs are unique and soul-inspired – your dog deserves fashion.  

Your Personal Dog Stylist – you’ll receive advice from me in regard to the perfect color, style and width for your dog.  Many of my clients prefer that I select the collars for their pups.

Comfort – all collars are lined with a shi shi satin lining… your pup loves comfort as much as you do.

Quality – collars are handmade in Chicago and the fabrics are hand-picked by me – only the softest cottons and most gorgeous silks.  Many silks are from Japan, India, Thailand, and the cottons are from France and Italy.  In addition, the hardware is welded and the vibrant thick thread is strong enough to hold hundreds of pounds, the same thread used for boat covers.  

Martingale – I make regular buckle collars, however my signature collar is the martingale collar.  Many clients have never heard of a martingale collar and once they try it, they never go back.  The martingale is the new ‘IT’ collar.

The mascots and inspiration for Houndstooth Pets are my two beautiful sweet retired racing greyhounds, Asha and Kai – they’re precious and I’m craaazy about them.  I started creating unique designer collars for them on my 20-something year old portable machine on the kitchen table, breaking needles every two stitches!  People would literally chase after me on the street to ask where I got my pup’s collars.  


              photos by www.suttonstudios.com


Asha means ‘hope’ in Sanskrit – hope for all the greyhounds {racing name was Ruffels in White, she raced 25 races in Arkansas, Alabama, and West Virginia and retired at 2 yrs old}.  She acts like a princess, yet is goofy and silly, very curious, smart and confident.  She jumps like a horse with her two front legs high in the air when she knows she’s going on a walk, to the dog park, or when she sees circus animals (is obsessed with big animals).  I think she was a cat in a previous life, she prefers cat toys, loves lounging in the sun and is constantly giving herself a bath – she also loves to give you kisses!

Kai means ‘fire’ in Sanskrit – for his fiery beautiful tiger coloring {racing name was Bo Samlin, he raced 8 races in Pensacola and retired at 2 yrs old}.  He’s a love bug and is a little unsure of himself, yet is my shadow and huge protector.  Greyhounds rarely bark – this one has a low deep menacing bark when bad energy is nearby.  He adores squeaky toys!  We were told that he’s an escape artist and can open fences… not once has he tried to open our fence, I guess he loves it here : – )  (ditto that my baby boy! we love you here too!)


It’s all in the details and caring for the earth.  Houndstooth Pets products are carefully packed in their own handcrafted bag and wrapped in twine {the bag can be repurposed as an eyeglass case or a doggie snack bag}. Twine is biodegradable or can be reused. Your product is shipped in an eco friendly 100% recycled bag, and even the business cards are 100% recycled – the earth is happier and you are happier. It’s the attention to detail that makes your experience with Houndstooth Pets extraordinary, just what you, your pup, and the earth deserve!


I’m an eternal life learner, risk taker, gypsy, nerdy geek, spiritual woo woo wannabe and artist.  I grew up in a small farm town in Illinois of a whopping 600 people.

Early year highlights…  winning the county Spelling Bee two years in a row, cheerleading, playing sports, playing the flute, singing in choir, and being elected as Homecoming Queen.  I’ve lived in Dallas, San Diego, New York City, and Chicago – attended a fashion design school and have a BS in Accounting and a MS in Management Information Systems.  I also took a sabbatical from a corporate career to attend the Neighborhood Playhouse School of the Theatre in NYC.  I have enough schooling to be a doctor, yet ART is my game.

What I know for sure… my soul purpose is to bring beauty to the world and I’m wild about animals.  The two things I’ve been obsessed with ever since I could crawl is design and acting.  My animals have always been there for me – my rock, the ones who truly understand who I am.

Favorite activities ~ going anywhere with my husband, walks and snuggles with my dogs, dancing, listening to music, reading, yoga, movies, plays, tennis, acting, creating art – my collars, home design, fashion, painting.


Rachel Newman – Deerfield, IL

  “I just wanted to let you know that all 3 dogs look stunning in their collars!  But the biggest news of all (and I don’t know if you are aware that your collars are MAGIC), is that last night after I put Cosette’s new collar on, she ‘sat’ for the first time!  She is my very lazy greyhound who has refused to try anything new and last night that 8-year-old greyhound felt spunky enough to learn a new trick!  Thanks a million!”

Dane Hodgdon – Raleigh, NC

  “Just got Charlie’s collar and I have to say, this thing is Awesome!  Not only do you need to market yourself as handmade, but I would preach the high quality material you use, this thing is so soft, holy cow.”

Mark Misic – DeKalb, IL

  Had to write and tell you how much Clare loves her collar!  She practically won’t let me take it off of her and she is so eager to have the collar back on each morning!  The collar is really cute – I have never had a martingale before and love it – it’s the BEST of both worlds – the BEST of a regular collar combined with the functionality of a metal ‘choke chain’ – when she starts pulling it tightens and she stops.”   

Jodie Campbell – Calgary, Alberta, Canada

  SO happy with my Houndstooth Pets custom collar for my boxer, Islay! The martingale was easy to put on and adjust.  I also love having the option of different widths – the 2″ width is perfect!  Thanks for a great product!”  

Erika Matthei – Gurnee, IL

  “My dog had a bad neck infection from his old collar.  With his new Houndstooth Pets collar there are no more infections!  Hallelujah!  The satin backing does not irritate his neck. Thank you so much!”   

Amanda Campbell – Gurnee, IL

  My 10 month old boxer, Jax, loves his martingale collar! In the past, he’s broken quite a few collars. Anything with a plastic connecter hasn’t lasted longer than a day. He’d either manage to pull it off his head or break it. I switched to metal fastening collars, but those are stiff and uncomfortable. He’d dig at his neck a lot, leaving me to only put the collar on when it was potty time. I purchased the 2 inch martingale collar in the biltmore pattern & he simply loves it! He doesn’t scratch at it, hasn’t escaped and he pulls much less on a leash. The collar is gentle enough to wear all day, but strong enough to enforce my no pulling policy. He wore the collar to a pet store last week & everyone stopped to ask me where I got it! The pattern is true to the picture posted on the website and the fabric is unbelievably soft!”

Loving Donations – the purpose of life is to help others 

2014    Soi Dog Foundation, Greyhounds Only, 4 Greyhound Racers

2013    Greyhounds Only, Illinois Doberman Rescue (Plus)

Would you like to keep in touch?  I would love to connect with you!

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Handmade in Chicago