An Evening with John Bartlett

Designer and animal activist John Bartlett was the success story at Thursday night’s dot429 and Wells Fargo “Salon Series: Conversations About Success” premiere. Held in the beautiful outdoor garden of The Yard at the Soho Grand Hotel, the enticing and inviting first of the series focused on investment as the topic and John gave his take on his multiple levels of success, from personal to professional to philanthropic.

“If you’re doing what you love, you can give so much back to your community,” John said, noting
that fashion is a harsh mistress that he had to walk away from after 9/11. He said he put everything in storage and went on sabbatical to Cambodia and Thailand, investing time in yoga and watching the Buddhist monks, where something there “hit my soul.” That led him back to New York, where he adopted a dog from North Shore Animal League, Tiny Tim, who put him on an entirely new path, and he returned to fashion, “doing it in a way that makes me happy.”

Tiny Tim made a huge impact on John and his business. The tripod dog became the logo of the designer’s clothing company, inspired John to volunteer at the Harlem animal care and control, to work with the compassion program to get dogs off the euthanasia list and ultimately to create the Tiny Tim Rescue Fund. “My legacy is the foundation that was created in honor of Tiny Tim. I’m working to merge the two worlds of commerce and compassion.”

Tiny Tim passed away about a year ago, but John says he still inspires him. For one, he’s just adopted a new little dog to join his existing family of two bigger dogs. In Mykonos recently, John got down on one knee and proposed to his longtime partner. Now, as far as investment goes, John quips that he’s planning ahead for 2 — plus 3 dogs. It’s obvious John has given so much back to his community — he loves what he’s doing. And we love him for that.

John Bartlett before his dot429/Wells Fargo Salon Series presentation
The view entering The Yard at The Soho Grand Hotel
The designer on “stage”
Singer Boice-Terrel Allen with Salon co-hosts Tom Julian of the
Tom Julian Group and Montgomery Frazier, The Image Guru
Interior decorator Michael Arguello
Tourism director Reginald Charlot
Co-host Edward Garou and Joseph Miceli-Magnone
wearing John Bartlett signature camo 

John cutting up with me. We go back to DNR days and he 
brought tears to my eyes during his talk, when he gave props 
to me as one of his first supporters, recounting how I’d given him 
his first big break with a glowing review after I came to see his 
first collection in his tiny West Village studio. Talk about investing!

Leave a Reply