How Did You Come Up With That Design?!

It would be fair to say, most of our drawings come with a story.  Inspiration comes in many ways – people, places and things we see and do every day can spark ideas… that develop into images… that end up forming part of our collection.

We are often asked what inspires our designs, so here’s a look into how this one came about.


All About Our ‘Ol Salty Shirt

Love Pugs?  Feeling Salty? Into Boats? Looking for an awesome tee shirt?  Want to combine any of the above to get the best Pug/Salty/Boatie Tee Shirt ever?  Then read on… we’re here to tell you all about this super popular design and the artistic inspiration behind it!


As anyone who’s ever lived with one of these crazy little aliens knows, it’s natural to want to immortalise your pug so the whole word knows how spectacular he is.  But who would have thought our adorbs little fella, Bumble, would go on to grace the chest of zillions (well, not zillions, but lots!) of salty pug lovin’ peeps around the planet and rank as one of our top designs. Ok, let’s be fair, a few have mistaken the image for a bulldog – but we’re not offended because, after all, art is always up for interpretation. But we’ve elected not to tell Bumble…. just in case he decides the modelling gig isn’t for him.  Thanks Bumble, for being so irresistibly drawable!

In the Beginning….

A few years back we heard about Bumble, a young barrel of joy waiting for his fur-ever home.  Within 6 seconds of meeting him and even though he was far more interested in the blades of grass under his paws than paying any attention to us, we were in love with this portly little keg on legs.

Immediately upon arriving home and without the slightest hint of “nervous settling-in time” one might expect from a new family member in an entirely unfamiliar place, Bumble took it upon himself to break free from our attempts to comfort the “poor little doggy” and trot from room to room with his head held high, snorting and snuffling like a piglet as he went, surveying every nook and cranny of his new kingdom.  He also ate anything remotely food related en route – old crumbs, anything that may have rolled under a bed and a bit of stale bread the birds had dropped on the edge of our fishpond.

Suffice to say, this rollie pollie little loaf was destined to rule our home, steal our hearts and empty our pockets – arriving with a varied assortment of enough “ailments” to ensure we’d never have a red razoo to spend on anything but his vet’s mortgage again.

During his first six months as ruler of the land, Bumble was an only pug.  (His brother, Squid, arrived six months later – but that’s a whole ‘nother tale for another time …)

Bumble's wobbly little body continued to plod around his domain, snorting and snuffling as he'd go about his business keeping everything in check, making sure no rug was left unchewed or chair leg left un-peed on.  If he wasn't wobbling, he'd be prancing – his high-speed running action whenever food – or the mere chance of it – presents itself.  Never can you imagine the speed at which these little barrels can elevate to when there is a fridge door opening – and we’re pretty sure he had bionic implants as a puppy as he'd hear that stuff from a long way away!

Suffice to say, Bumble settled in nicely and we got used to the new pecking order.  Oh, it wasn’t his fault that he was placed at the top – we allowed it – but we challenge anyone to say no to THAT FACE!!  Bumble quickly became accustomed to our fussing over him and priorities in the house changed. Our freezer that was once packed with food became a storage receptacle for ice pads in all shapes and sizes, ready for his hot puggy body to lay on should the Queensland sun become too much. (Oh, no I don’t mind the extra 3 trips a week to the supermarket – so long as Bumble has an ice pack of his choosing at the ready!).  Rosters were organised to ensure Bumble had access to the air con if too warm – or the reverse cycle if he became too cold. And heaven forbid he might have to stay home more than an hour alone – doggy sitters on rotation are a thing – aren’t they?

Bumble has many of the traits of your typical pug. He’s a 5-stage clinger – forget ever visiting the toilet alone again, it won’t happen.  He’s a food obsessed monster – never, and I mean never, turn your back on your dinner – not even for a second – because if he hasn’t eaten the lot, he would have sneezed the entire content of his nasal cavity all over it (he’s smart, very very smart) essentially guaranteeing it’s now his, and his alone.  But no matter how annoying some traits may be, they quickly but bring a smile to your face and that, we do believe, it’s a pug’s mission in life – to make his person happy!

Its Time To Draw…

We’ve sketched a lot of pugs in our time – a lot of dogs in fact (we believe EVERY dog – no matter what their breed or background – is the best dog in the universe!  Actually – make that all animals – animals rock, we love them all – we just happen to have pugs right now, but we’d be just as smitten if they were a couple of Axolotl’s) (although it wouldn’t be as much fun blowing farty sounds on their fat little tummies).  Anyhow, we digress… we’ve sketched a lot of animals/dogs/pugs in our time and many of them could have reached tee shirt status … but there was “something ” that needed to be captured with Bumble, and it centred on that incredible “pug-ittude” of his.

He’s salty.  He’s a salty little prince charming who actually knows how totally cool he is!  He fully gets that we are lucky to have him – and that he is the captain of our world!  The uniform, the tatts of his girlfriend on his forearm (oh yes, he is definitely a "ladies pug") and the smugly pugly way he surveys his domain while sipping a brew… (well, that technically should be a bowl on the ground filled with fresh water, but that never would have worked!)… That’s Bumble! Our ‘Ol Salty Boy!

Who’s This Designed For?…

This design has been purchased by such a wide variety of people, it’s hard to categorise.  It doesn’t have a “target audience” as everyone seems to find it likable for their own reasons – wives buying it for their “salty” hubby, ocean lovers, boating people, dog lovers, girls ‘n guys…. young and not so young… everyone seems to connect with this design for their own reasons and it’s been a joy to hear the stories.

So, it seems our Bumble represents so many things to so many people – and everyone loves this Ol’ Salty just as much as we do!

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