Buckles the Husky Redesign and Plush Project

Client: aasman Branding on behalf of Yukon Highways and Public Works – Yukon Government

Project 1: Redesign the mascot “Buckles the Safety Husky” to bring stylistically “modernize” it.

Date: March to May 2016 The original “Buckles the Safety Husky” Mascot was designed by the talented and wonderful Chris Caldwell. At her recommendation, I was approached by Krysten on behalf of Aasman Branding (who was hired by Yukon Highways and Public Works, a division of Yukon Government) to give Buckles a redesign, to “modernize” him. This was my first “large” contract working with both a branding company, and the Yukon Government, and it was a pleasure to work with everyone. I sketched and vectored multiple images of Buckles in various poses, all geared towards bicycle and vehicle safety for children. The final images were used in promotional items (like the baby bib!) as well as banners around the City fo Whitehorse. Aasman wrote a wonderful article about the project, and I was honored by their kind words.

Project 2: Create 5 Buckles the Husky Custom Plush

Date: May to July 2016 After the redesign project was completed, I was then tasked to create 5 custom plush of Buckles. This project was a huge learning experience, and I severly underestimated the amount of time and work it would be, but in the end, it was worth every minute. I was so proud of those 5 puppies. They were so huggable, bigger than I intended (that tends to happen when I plush LOL), and just so cute! Plush Details:

  • Number of Different Prototype Pieces: 10 Heads, 5 hind legs, 4 bodies, 4 noses, 2 tails, 3 ears
  • Height: 18 inches / 45.72cm (bottom of feet to top of ears)
  • Fabric: Snow White Minky, Ash Grey Minky
  • Embroidery: Eyes, freckles, and “Buckles” signature on bottom of paws all from Madiera thread.
  • Stuffing: Approx 12 pounds / 5.44kg of polyester fiberfill stuffing
  • Machine Sewing: All pieces
  • Hand sewing: Paws and mouth details, ears, legs, tail, and head attachment to body.
  • Hours: Lost count around 100


Project 3: Design and Mass Produce 250 Buckles the Husky Plush

Date: May 2017 – April 2018 The most recent project I was asked to do was to have Buckles plush mass produced. I researched multiple companies, and after giving Aasman multiple quotes, we settled on Gann Memorials. I worked with Gann for many months going back and forth discussing how we wanted the plush to look. I supplied them with all images and even pattern pieces of the plushies I had made previously to work with. When they sent me images of the prototypes, I would discuss them with Aasman, revise them, and send them back. After the prototyping stage was complete, the final plush were shipped to me for inspection, before they were shipped to Aasman to be given to Yukon Highway.

Overall, my experience with my first mass production company and factory had its ups and downs, and as always it’s a learning experience. I loved working with Krysten, and I thank her so very much for continuing to work with me, and I hope to work with her and Aasman Branding again in the future!