Welcome to Wear Wag Repeat Podcast Episode 7: Crystal Serowka of Woof & Walls talks about how she created one of the most colorful feature accounts on Instagram. Hear how she continues to drive engagement for her account and the best hashtags to search to find street art in any city. You’ll also learn about a new digital publication that highlights independent dog accessories brands around the world.
Listen to the Episode
Crystal Serowka started Woof & Walls as a feature account on Instagram, curating the cutest pups and the most colorful street art from around the world. Over the last year of being founded, she’s expanded into much more than just a feature account. Last month, Woof & Walls released their first issue of Pawlished, a monthly digital look book filled with seasonally appropriate fashion for dogs. With more exciting things on the horizon, Woof & Walls is eager to continually grow their brand, but one thing will always be number one in their hearts: dogs and street art.
Tori: How did you come up with the idea for Woof & Walls?
Crystal: I always loved taking photos of my own dogs in front of street art. At the time I only had Paris, my chihuahua. I took her out around Chicago and took photos of her in front of street art. I did a few searches on Instagram and was blown away that I couldn’t find one account about dogs and street art. That night I told my best friend and boyfriend that I was going to start this account. I had a grand idea of featuring my dog and other people’s dogs. I started it and within the first two months it was pretty slow. Then overnight, i began getting tagged in photos and people would DM me their photos. It really picked up speed, then we were featured on BuzzFeed which really made a difference!
Tori: One of my favorite things about your account is how you use the color wheel, tell us about that and how you came up with that idea.
Crystal: I love the way it looks! Four or five months into this account I started saving my tagged photos into my phone. I created color based folders on my phone to organize them. I have about 25 different folders on my phone for all of them.
Tori: What are some of the key things you do to continually grow an Instagram account?
Crystal: One of my favorite things is my takeovers. How that works is that I create a password and let other users log in to my account, then they go out for the day and basically “wall crawl” and post a ton of content to my Instagram Stories. It allows my followers to see all these other cities, and other street art from around the world. When another account takes over, they can also tell their followers to come over to Woof & Walls to check it out. So it provides great value to my followers and helps me reach new audiences.
Tori: Any tips to find the best street art?
Crystal: The best way is to look on Instagram. For example, in Chicago I search #chicagostreetat or #chicagomurals. This works for any city! I think it’s one of the best ways to find what street art is around you. I recently did this in Madison. (editor’s note: I also did this in Asheville and found so many murals!) If you take a great street art photo and post it on Instagram, please geo-tag it so other people can find it and enjoy it, too!
Are you creating your new digital magazine Pawlished by yourself? Who is the creative team behind it?
For Pawlished I have a partner named Lori, and she’s incredible! We’re always on the same page which is a great thing when you’re working together. She has a dog named Charlie who is also one of the main models of Pawlished, alongside my dogs Paris and Emmy Lou. If we need larger dogs, we do a model call out on Instagram. Our designer for the magazine is named Courtney and she also created the Woof & Walls logo. Basically, she truly stepped inside my head and made the perfect logo for me! And for the magazine, she took idea for Pawlished and our notes and put it into an actual design.
Our goal for the magazine is to show vendors who make incredible products, but maybe don’t have a huge following or the budget to take professional photos. We want to give them the attention they deserve. (Editor’s note: Since we talked, Pawlished has grown so much that that Crystal and Lori have started to charge for placements in the magazine. Congrats, ladies!).
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