Tuesday, July 31, 2012

I'm Your Present Orange Kitten Cameo Necklace Giveaway!

Kelly has been selling her unique handmade clothing, accessories, and jewelry under the name I'm Your Present since 2007. Since then, the cheekily named line has gone on to sell in boutiques all over the world, and has become one of the top selling designers on Etsy.

I'm Your Present's creations include adorable appliqued and printed shirts and dresses, along with fun accessories made for grown up girls who still harbor a serious addiction to cute. In addition to her cat-themed offerings, don't miss out on other awesome items, such as an ice cream sandwich party dress, a panda-inspired playsuit, and her infamous cuts of meat dress that looks (and smells) a lot better than Lady Gaga's.

Kelly's styles are pretty, playful, and the purrfect accompaniment to your cool cat lady persona. As for the designer herself, she lives in Rhode Island with her "gigantic collection of stuffed ponies," and her kitty named Meatball.

Pink Persian Kitten Cameo Earrings

Enter To Win!

Kelly has generously offered one lucky Catsparella reader the chance to win a lovely Orange Kitten Cameo Necklace from I'm Your Present!

To enter, leave a comment on this post with your name and some way for me to contact you if you win (email, link back to your blog or profile, Twitter, etc.). The winner be will chosen in a random drawing next Tuesday, August 7th at 5:00PM EST. This giveaway is open to everyone, so our international friends can participate, too! One entry per person, please.

Good luck, and be sure to visit the I'm Your Present Etsy shop, and follow them on Facebook for new listings and exclusive sales!

(If you have trouble leaving a comment, please email me at catsparella@gmail.com)

[Comments are now closed. Thanks for entering!]


Cat Cupcake Tuesdays

Kate from the KateMakesCake created these scrumptious kitty cupcakes as a fundraiser for the Hounslow Animal Welfare Society (HAWS), a West London-based foster care network that takes in domestic animals who have found themselves in desperate situations.

The vanilla and chocolate cupcakes are topped in vanilla buttercream, and decorated with white chocolate buttons, chocolate chips, chocolate icing, and Smarties. Check out Kate's blog to see more pictures of the sell-out treats, and to read about her experience fostering kittens through HAWS.

Have you created or spotted any kitty-themed baked goods (or other foods) lately? If so, please submit your sweet tips for Cat Cupcake Tuesdays to catsparella@gmail.com!


Monday, July 30, 2012

Cart Pushing Cat Is Going Nowhere Fast

If cart pushing was an Olympic sport, the cat in this video would definitely be going for the gold. Just look at this fleet-footed feline go!

You know how some countries pour millions of dollars into their Olympic training programs so they don't get shown up in front of the rest of the world? I'm pretty sure that Japan has a similar program for cats to ensure that they consistently produce the cutest, funniest, and most bizarre cat videos on the internet.


Saturday, July 28, 2012

It's Caturday!

Welcome back for another edition of Caturday, where we catch up on the week's latest cat news, and get to meet some of your amazing kitties!

This week, a special needs feline was reunited with her owner after a devastating apartment blaze, Japanese cat travel commercials were adorable in any language, we took another look at early lolcats in the 1950s Ethicon Suture Cat-a-log, a naughty kitty had some fun in a hot pink ball of fondant yarn on Cat Cupcake Tuesdays, we redecorated our homes with kitten inspired color palettes by Design Seeds, Meadowlark released a jewelry collection that was all paws, Lisa sent me a Cleo the Cat charm that Charlie had fun modeling, and I visited the Garden State Cat Show & Expo where I saw cats in cars, and ran a feline agility course!

A few items of note:

Don't forget to stop by an enter to win a copy of "Glamourpuss: The Enchanting World of Kitty Wigs" by Julie Jackson! I'm drawing the lucky winner of the cat culture classic on Tuesday 7/31!

My newest sponsor, "99 Reasons to Hate Cats" (The cat cartoon book for people who love and (love to) hate cats), is having a promo on Amazon through Tuesday 7/31, where you can download the Kindle version of the book for free. If you've been thinking of checking it out, now is your chance!

And finally, thank you to everyone who has taken the time to vote for Catsparella in the category of Best Use of Social Media blog for the 2012 Petties! The voting period is almost over (yay!), so please continue to vote once a day through Tuesday 7/31 to help us win a $1,000 donation to Sayreville Pet Adoption Center! Earlier this year, SPAC was in dire financial straits, but thanks to support from the local community, the only no-kill facility of its kind in the area has been able to keep its doors open. The shelter cares for many cats who otherwise might not be given a chance, so I would love to win the donation as a way of saying thank you, and to help them continue in their very important mission. Click HERE to vote!

Gordon and Petunia=BFFs

This week's featured feline is the newest fur sibling of another gorgeous kitty who was featured in a previous Caturday post!

Maggie writes:

Gordon Freeman (or Gordy/Gordo) is a 3-month-old blue, bi-colored Persian. She was named after a PC game character in Half Life (her human daddy thought of this one). We adopted her three weeks ago, and she is growing fast!

Our 3 lbs. chunky baby is so crazy and playful. She loves to purr at any human touch; it sounds like she has one little bumblebee flying in her tummy. I forgot what it was like to have a kitten, and it's hilarious to see Gordy and her sister, Petunia, play. It took almost the full three weeks that we've had her for Petunia to get comfortable around her sister. But these days, their favorite activity involves scampering around and chasing after one another. They haven't bonded enough to have Petunia groom her yet. I hope that day comes soon!

We can't wait for Gordy to grow up so we can see how beautiful she becomes--although we hope that that time passes by slowly, we love all of her crazy kitten tactics. Her human dad always dreamed of a little flat-faced kitty, we were so lucky to find her.

Our pet announcement cards, thanks to Martha Stewart!

Petunia driving to meet her baby sister.

Ready to pounce!

Gordy's favorite sleeping position.

Pink nose, pink lips-- au naturale!

Just hangin' out with her kitty cat friends.

Gordon was the star at a photoshoot we did for our holiday cards.

Special thanks to Maggie for sharing her beautiful baby with us this week! Sending out many purrs of congratulations to this sweet family on their littlest new addition!

p.s. Looking for even more Catsparella? Check out my weekly columns over on Catster!

This week:

Want to see your cat(s) on Catsparella? I'm always taking submissions for my weekly Caturday post! Just email your best kitty pics to catsparella@gmail.com, and include your cat's name and anything else you'd like to share! I can't wait to hear from you!


Friday, July 27, 2012

Cat Lady Love For Cleo The Cat Charm

Charlie's got #catswag

A long-time reader named Lisa recently dropped me an email asking if she could send over a present, writing, "I promise it's not a basket of kittens. Although a basket of kittens is always a tasteful gift!"

As promised, a basket of fluffy kittens did not show up at my doorstep, however I did receive a feline of another kind, in the the form of a delicate gold necklace.

It turns out that Lisa was looking for a cat charm for herself, but couldn't find anything that didn't seem "cheesy". Through a series of events, she hooked up with the daughter of a family friend, who had just started her own line of jewelry called Samantha's Charms. The two designed Cleo the Cat together, and Lisa loved how it turned out so much that she ordered a few for the cat loving ladies she has been working with on The Cat-vocates fundraising initiative for the MSPCA. Being the all-around awesome lady that she is, she also happened to have an extra one on hand to send my way, in recognition of my "purr-sonal commitment to informing and entertaining" my readers! Squee!

Catsparella in the freckled flesh

I have an immense amount of gratitude towards anyone who takes the time to read Catsparella, and words cannot express how touched I am by Lisa's thoughtful gesture. I love my new bling very much, and will think of Lisa fondly every time I wear it!

*In the interest of being disclosure-y, the necklace was a gift and Lisa did not ask me to write about it at all, but I would like to mention that if you interested in ordering a Cleo the Cat charm for yourself, you can do so here.


1950s Ethicon Suture Cat-a-log: Part II

I agree she's terrible, Doctor, but you know there are some even I can't train!

Long before Doctor Cat and I Can Has Cheezburger graced this digital earth, the surly kittens of the Ethicon Suture Cat-a-log were causing mayhem in black & white. The scans seen here were taken from a 1950s copy of the Ethicon Suture Cat-alog, distributed by Ethicon Suture Laboratories, Inc. The odd piece of ephemera, which I acquired after my dad picked it up for me at a book sale, was produced to help promote the surgical suture company, who promised that the catgut used in their products was NOT taken from actual cats, as the misnomer grossly implies.

When I first posted some scans from the Cat-a-log back in April, there was some discussion as to whether they were the first lolcats; However, that dubious distinction belongs to photographers like Harry Pointer (1822-1889) and Harry Whittier Frees (1879–1953), who turned the act of taking and captioning adorable cat photos into shareable art. (For a more in-depth lolcat history, check out "Even in the 1870s, humans were obsessed with ridiculous photos of cats" over on io9.)

While these early examples certainly paved the way for modern kitty captioning practices, it still doesn't explain how today's generation of lolcats grew up to be the grammatically incorrect, cheeseburger aficionados that they are depicted as today.

Please God...make it a boy...

On Call

When I say fifteen minute scrub, I mean fifteen minute scrub

Never again will I trust an interne...

We'll need another interne to hold the retractors...

Breakfast...bedpan...lunch; Lunch...bedpan...supper; supper...bedpan...sleep...

So I sez to the old goat...

Hey Jonesy! Where'd you put those sutures?

...and you can tell the dietician I said so...

I've asked everyone, doctor, but we just don't seem to have any Fallopian tubes!

Now in your own words, tell me all about your dream...


Thursday, July 26, 2012

Pussycat Inspired Paint Palettes

Jessica of Design Seeds has taken her passion for color, and turned it into dazzling palettes inspired by some of the more awesome things in life, like pretty minerals, blueberry crepes, and ya know, cats.

And while you can't walk into a store and request a swatch of cute just yet, Jessica outlines a system for identifying the colors used in each mood board so you can be well on your way to creating the Kittenish kitchen or Russian Blue bathroom of your dreams.


Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Pretty Your Paws with The Love Cats Jewelry Collection by Meadowlark

New Zealand-based jewelry designers Meadowlark have earned a cult following for their dark, edgy designs, and their latest collection, The Love Cats, follows suit, recalling imagery from a triptych of mystical elements.

From their website's description of the collection:

"Drawing inspiration from immediate surrounds, Meadowlark have elevated everyday elements from their home. Three diverse motifs dovetail beautifully into this range, evolving an ongoing love for symbols of power and mystery. The Peony, A celebration of Spring, prosperity and peace. Crossed nails, a symbol of binding and making, jewellery made of nails was historically worn as pagan protection against mischievous magic, to ward off sickness and draw luck to the wearer. Completing the triptych, the Cat story is the boldest of the three. This stoic and silent guardian of the home also represents transformation, opportunity and freedom."

Being a notorious lover of cat feetsies, I'm besotted by the entire line, especially the paw stud earrings, and the chunky cat paw cocktail ring, featuring a delicate set of kitty claws clutching at a pyramid shaped rose quartz.

The Love Cats Summer 2012/13 Collection is available for pre-order for your favorite cat blogger now through the Meadowlark online shop.


Japanese Cat Travel Commercials Are Adorable In Any Language

Nothing quite tickles me more than the way that the Japanese embrace cats as part of their culture, and one of my favorite examples of this is in a commercial depicting a cat business trip. In it, an orange and white tabby wearing a pair of glasses and a bow-tie hops the bullet train, before checking into a hotel for a business meeting.

The cat in the commercial is NyaRan, and he is the spokescat for Jalan, the travel booking arm of Recruit Co., Ltd., a classified advertisement, publication, and human resources company in Japan.

NyaRan has popped up in dozens of commercials for Jalan, illustrating how easily their services lead to awesomely adorable trips. After recently encountering another ad where the talented feline actor karate chops a watermelon in half with his bare paws (thanks to Twitter pal Lisa C. for the tip!), I decided it was high time to have someone translate a few of my favorites. As predicted, even a translation doesn't fully explain exactly what is happening on that beach, but in any language, it's still super cute.

I am NyaRan.
I am on a Business Trip.
I will sell like crazy!
[NyaRan's Paw Steamed Bun]
[Revnue increase] - the red text
Business trip hotel reservations too
[Business trip hotel reservations too]
[Encounter something new]

I am NyaRan.
[Trip around Japan]
Summer is...
Vacationing with Friends!!!
[Overnight] *Sleepover-works as well
[Overnight Reservations
JyaRan [Search]]
(Song - Ran ran jyaran~)
[Encounter something new]

I am NyaRan.
This Summer..
-I'm traveling with my teacher!
Overnight. Overnight
Fancy-! Fancy-!
Ta-Ma-Ne-!! (A Japanese phrase people say when the fireworks go up)
[This Summer's trip too at]
JyaRan [Search]]
(Song - Ran ran jyaran~)
[Encounter something new]

[JyaRan Pack]
This is??
[Pack Pack JyaRan Pack]
[Flexible and Affordable JyaRan Pack]
(Reservation Confirmed)
[The name is just ordinary super hero]
[Travel fee and Hotels, combined value]
[JyaRan Pack]
[JyaRan Pack [Search]]
[Encounter something new]

Commercial 2:
I am NyaRan
This year I am going to fly the world!
[New York] Hello-!
[Seoul] Annyeonghaseyo-!
[Paris] Comment allez-vous-!
[Piza] It is tilted.
[Reservations at 180 countries of the world]
Reservations for World Hotels at
Overseas too at JyaRan
[Encounter something new]


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

"Glamourpuss: The Enchanting World of Kitty Wigs" Book Giveaway!

Katy Perry. Lady Gaga. Rihanna. Nicki Minaj. Long before these ladies were transforming their looks with multi-hued hairdos, the cats of "Glamourpuss: The Enchanting World of Kitty Wigs" were expressing themselves through the power of technicolor locks.

As a creative-type person, I'm always looking for new things and people be inspired by, and Julie Jackson has been one major source of inspiration in my life, even before I started blogging. Jackson's Subversive Cross Stitch taught me everything I know about the addictive needlecraft, and evidence of my obsession still remain in my parent's living room in the form of matching Mom and Dad stitched tattoos that sit side-by-side on top of their television set.

After her success with Subversive Cross Stitch, Jackson teamed up with her beloved Siamese cat (and cover model), Boone, to create Kitty Wigs (the book), along with an eponymous line of mini-hairpieces made to fit your ultra-glamorous pussycat. She says the wigs "are not only a way to add something sublime to your cat's character, but they provide a way for you to spend more quality time together -- to dream together," while Cute Overload (another early blogging inspiration of mine) calls it, "totally new levels of redonkulessness." Kitty Wigs has been mentioned pretty much everywhere and has even been translated into Korean and Japanese, while Julie continues to prove to aspiring cat-repreneurs like myelf that it is possible to turn your quirky passions into a career.

"Glamourpuss" by Julie Jackson and photographed by Jill Johnson, features "60 stylish portraits showcasing furry models in the most fetching custom-made cat wigs ever created," and "begs to answer the age-old question: what on earth do cats do all day?" Kitty Wigs also has its own iPhone app, and recently became available in all digital formats through Amazon.

Enter To Win!

Ms. Jackson herself has generously offered one lucky Catsparella reader the chance to win a copy of "Glamourpuss: The Enchanting World of Kitty Wigs" of their very own!

To enter, leave a comment on this post with your name and some way for me to contact you if you win (email, link back to your blog or profile, Twitter, etc.). The winner be will chosen in a random drawing next Tuesday, July 31st at 5:00PM EST. This giveaway is open to everyone, so our international friends can participate, too! One entry per person, please.

Good luck, and be sure to visit the Kitty Wigs website, and follow them on Facebook for fun updates and info on all of their latest designs!

(If you have trouble leaving a comment, please email me at catsparella@gmail.com)

[Comments are now closed. Thanks for entering!]



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