Archives for posts with tag: cats

One of the duties of blogging appears to be acknowledging the sheer awesomeness of other blogs. Today, this lowly blog must acknowledge the unquestionable work of two far superior producers: the unsurpassed Feline Underground and Jack Shepherd at Buzz Feed for leading to and creating (respectively) 109 Cats in Sweaters.  For over 14 years (half my life!) the internet has unspooled for me its golden fleece, or thread of information, or whatever, but none of its contributions to date compare to 109 Cats in Sweaters.  How has all this time passed, internet, and I had never even imagined a cat in a sweater.  Yet here they were the whole time. All 109 of them. And they present some questions and observations.

1. How does one put a cat in a sweater?

Granted there are some incredibly docile cats out there–some that will allow you to sprawl them across your shoulders (as if a living stole!) and carry them around for several minutes until the novelty wears off.  But some of these sweaters are incredibly fitted–so fitted that it would be difficult for a human (with a much greater range of motion) to wrangle themselves into. It’s almost impossible to calculate the minutes someone spent slowly shimmying such sweaters up the front legs of a wary cat.  Do you put the head in first?  Explain:

2. Some of these sweaters are very high quality!

Although some of these cats are obviously wearing items for children (probably not handmade), another remarkable aspect of this collection of images is the variant and highly technical knitting skills displayed by the homemade sweaters.  These are  not sweaters culled from the leftovers of a screw-up piece.  Most of these are not starter-sweaters. Many of these sweaters are intricate and designed for their wearer.  For instance, the piece pictured just above (the cream cable knit sweater) would have involved measurements, stitch counting, swatches and, you  know,  math to develop a pattern.  In fact, the vast majority of these sweaters suggest the work of a highly experienced knitter who has exhausted all possible knitting projects for the humans in his or her life.

Although it’s hard to see exactly, I believe the above sweater contains seed stitching, ribbing, crochet techniques and some other advance shaping techniques.  Also whoever made this has genius eye for styling–the red certainly pops off the grey of the cat’s fur and the green in its eye.  And the feminine accent touches really do bring out the femininity of the cat.  This is probably a little too Santa-workshopish to transfer to a great sweater for an actual woman, though. Unless you worked in Santa’s workshop, that is.  Then it’s prima.

Here again, with the above example, we see a carefully measured pattern designed obviously for this cat to be its sole wearer.  There are stripes, ribs, fitted sleeves, and also what looks like some pretty detailed embroidery (with a little bling). Glad to see this cat seems to be enjoying its sweater because the maker but some heart into it!

I don’t know exactly what the technique is called that brings the color patterns to this sweater. Forgive master knitters, but is this a watered down version of fair isle knitting? Anyway, doing patterns like this is way more difficult than doing stripes of colors.  Beyond the unbearable cuteness of the cardigan-kitten combination, the cardigan is a smart idea as it makes the sweater easier to force a cat into.  The bow also is a time saver vs. a button and works in the overall package of the sweater.  Although the colors would never work for me, I could see wearing a human version of this (maybe in emerald-green and creme) while tooling around the apartment in winter.

3. What do these sweaters say about their makers?

It’s hard not to look at some of these sweaters and see, superimposed over the cat, the person who made the sweater.  For instance, the one below creates the image of a middle-aged woman with wide-brimmed glasses, a loose flowing skirt to below the knees, out on her lunch break wearing some super comfortable Mary Janes. She has a brisk pace and,I imagine, a great laugh.

Here’s another:

I feel like I’ve encountered the woman responsible for the above multiple times in my local yarn store.  She’s answers questions about yarn while still holding her knitting projects.  She pushes me towards expensive yarns and judges me about the quality of my preferred fibers.

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Sometimes I have this dream where 100 of my best friends  and I are invited to a mysterious palace full of strange puzzles and plush seating.  Some of my friends are ghost white. Some of my friends sleep with their head tucked into their bodies.  We line ourselves in rows.  Then there are fights or we find our place in the walls. Or our feet become liquid and we stand on glass.  When there’s music we burrow into chairs.  Then we become a commercial.