Friday, August 31, 2012

The 25 Best Tweets From The First Ever Internet Cat Video Film Festival

Last night, Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota hosted the world's first ever Internet Cat Video Film Festival, which was by all accounts, a "meowmentus" occasion. The event was created by Walker Open Field's "unofficial cat-lady-in-residence" Katie Czarniecki Hill, to see what happened when people stopped being polite, and started watching cat videos together in public. A reported 10,000 videos were submitted for inclusion in the event, which were then narrowed down to 79 carefully curated selections in categories such as Comedy, Drama, Foreign, Animated, Documentary, Musical, Art House, Lifetime Achievement, and People's Choice.

People's Choice nominees, including Cat Mom Hugs Baby Kitten, Dubstep Cat, Henri 2, Paw de Deux, Maru Slides into Boxes, Nonono Cat, Nyan Cat, and Two Talking Cats, were open to a public vote from Aug. 6 - 12, with Will Braden's masterful Henri 2, Paw de Deux taking home the evening's coveted Golden Kitty Award. Attendees were encouraged to bring along their own cats (few did, although some kitties braved the crowds on leashes and in strollers), and were also treated to appearances by feline celebrities like Lil Bub and Pudge the Cat. The free festival, which clocked in at just under two hours, was held on a sprawling hill outside of the museum, which quickly filled up to standing room only capacity. Latecomers marveled at the size of the crowd, which reportedly numbered in the thousands.

If you're thinking about holding your own private cat video viewing session, fear not because Walker Art Center has already posted the entire festival playlist on YouTube for your viewing pleasure. Also, there's still time to get involved -- the public is encouraged to vote for the "Best in Show" award by tweeting their pick (more details here), before the winner is announced on Sept. 7.

As expected, the event inspired a heavy Twitter presence, enabling those who were unable to attend to live vicariously through festivalgoers. From crashing canines to cat fashion, #catvidfest was a trending topic that even the real Nyan Cat and the Mayor of Minneapolis couldn't resist.


Thursday, August 30, 2012

Essex Lion Hunt Called Off As Maine Coon Cat Is Identified As Likely Culprit

How did a cuddly kitty named Teddy Bear nearly turn the town of Essex, England upside down? Residents were on high alert earlier this week after visitors staying at a caravan park spotted a "very large animal" they believed to be a lion.

Ginny Murphy was out of town when the report made headlines on Sunday, but knew right away that her large cat named Teddy Bear was likely to blame. The owner of the three-year-old Maine Coon says he frequently hunts in the field where the "lion" was spotted.

A reporter from The BBC dropped by Murphy's home to meet the kitty at the center of the controversy, joking, "He was difficult to entice out from under the bed this morning, but we managed to get some shots of him."

A couple who photographed the feline (you can check out their blurry shot here) told police it was "definitely a very large animal, and possibly a lion, definitely a large cat," adding, "We witnessed it, I would say, for about 20 to 30 minutes cleaning itself and rolling about in the field." (Sounds like very ferocious behavior to me.)

In less than a week's time, the Essex Lion sparked national headlines, hoax photos, and its very own Twitter account with 36,000 fans. Experts from the local zoo and as many as 25 police officers using helicopters and thermal imaging equipment were also called in as part of the now defunct search.



Exclusive Fancy Feast Cat Birthday Party Kit Giveaway Winners!

Thank you to everyone who shared their wonderful cat stories with me as part of the Fancy Feast Cat Birthday Party Kit Giveaway!

I used to determine the 10 lucky winners:

#82 Rachel - I love kitties, I have 4, and the funny thing is all their birthdays are in March. March 2, 3, 23, and 28.

#195 Michelle - Hi I would like to enter your Fancy Feast Cat Birthday Kit Giveaway Thanks

#15 Rachel - Omg, this would be amazing to win.

#239 Kayla - So cute my cat's birthday is 05/04

#202 Jenae - So Purrfect! My cat's name is Ella and her 3rd birthday is on Sept. 28th :). I rescued her out of someones shed and we had been best friends ever since. My cat loves fancy feast <3

#274 ntrsu01 - My twin tabbies, Miss Maimie and Miss Emily, are having their 15th birthday this year! A party with friends and family is definitely in the planning.

#233 Patricia - My Sadie Belle's sixth birthday is coming up on September 3rd. Not only do I celebrate her birthday on this day I celebrate her shelter adoption day which is on October 19th. (2006) Each year I throw a little party for her with a cake, a dress, matching party hat and 2 special gifts. I have a picture of her first birthday at work on my desk that gets a lot of attention. Everyone calls me crazy cat lady.

#317 Judith - Awesome party kit. I would love to throw a Fancy Feast Cat Birthday Party. Thank-you for the opportunity to enter this giveaway.

#12 Stella - Woot! Cat party!

#123 Nikki - Kiko kitty's 1st birthday is coming up soon !! ^_^ <3

Thanks again to all who entered, and be sure to like Fancy Feast on Facebook for all of their latest updates and offers!


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Choupette Gets Kissed by Daddy Karl in New Cat Cam Clip for Net-a-Porter

Just when I thought a whole week might go by without a new piece of Choupette news to report, fashion's latest it girl (or it cat, as it were) has gone and found herself yet another medium to enchant us with.

The blue-eyed Birman makes her long awaited YouTube debut in a behind-the-scenes video to help promote the Karl for Karl Lagerfeld collection for Net-a-Porter. The clip, which is shot from a cat's point of view (although there's no way I believe they strapped a camera on Choupette and let her wander around an open set where she could get lost or catnapped), ends with Lagerfeld planting a sweet smooch on the bemused kitty's cheek.

Recent reports suggest that Lagerfeld's love for the cat runs so deep, he's even taken to signing texts, "Your Choupette," to make it seem as if she were responding to messages on his behalf. While the designer's ailurophilia seems genuine, only time will tell if his newly discovered feline fixation will translate into a cat-inspired clothing collection in the future.


Venus, The Two-Faced Kitty Makes Her Debut on The Today Show

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As is becoming a rite of passage for all felines who find sudden internet fame (See also: Willow and Lil Bub), Venus the Chimera Cat, who shot to notoriety last week after her pictures went viral online, traveled to NYC to make her national television debut.

The Florida native's first stop was The Today Show with her paw-rents Christina and Chris, where she mugged for the cameras as they discussed how she came into their lives, and proved once and for all that she is a real kitty.

Christina says that Venus has not been DNA tested, but vets who have seen her believe her to be a chimera cat, while others argue her unique appearance is caused by X-inactivation with heterochromia (Today Show host Savannah Guthrie clarifies: "Technical term is, she's cute!")

Prior to the appearance, Venus provided the following update to her growing swell of Facebook fans:

Ok fans.... Here's the announcement! We are in this city called the Big Apple! Mommy & Daddy will be on this neat show with me tomorrow morning (Wednesday) called "The Today Show"!!! They called Ms. Donna at TransMedia (along with some other big shows) and really wanted to meet me so we decided to let them be the first to interview me on live TV. Mommy was very careful to monitor if I was scared on the plane and I wasn't. I was so comfy in my carrier & calm the whole way AND was even recognized by someone who had seen me on the internet while waiting in the security line at the airport and got attention even before we got on the plane. I had a great flight and the people on the plane were even surprised that I was in such good spirits and not scared at all. I was even purring....Time to prove once and for all to ALL of the skeptics that STILL think I'm photoshopped or dyed that I am in fact 100% nature made....he he! I think Mommy & Daddy are more nervous than me! Love, Venus :)


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Cat Shaming Website Exposes Feline Misdeeds

After the meteoric rise of Dog Shaming, the Tumblr where owners submit images of their remorseful pooches confessing their most embarrassing secrets, it was inevitable that a blog where cat owners could "tattle-tale on their naughty nyans" would emerge in its wake.

The only problem is, while dogs are actually sorry for their indiscretions (or rather, good at looking sorry with those sad, puppy-dog eyes), cats know nothing of this emotion we call "shame." Many of their misdeeds revolve around indiscriminate puking, peeing, and early morning breakfast requests, which most kitties consider to be perfectly socially acceptable behavior.

Check out a few of my favorite "confessions" here, and visit Cat Shaming for a deeper look at the lighthearted side of feline humiliation.


Cat Cupcake Tuesdays

You've probably seen cupcakes announcing the arrival of a new baby before, but how about sweet treats celebrating a youngster of the more furry variety?

Mir of Wickedly Witchy created these cat-inspired cupcakes to help her friends welcome home their newborn kitten, Indy. The baby pink fondant is accentuated with tiny paw prints, hearts, bows, and a ball of yarn. Very sweet, indeed!

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!


Monday, August 27, 2012

Kitten Muscle Tee Makes Mondays More Bearable

Someone on Yahoo! Answers once asked why Garfield hates Mondays so much, to which one contributor thoughtfully responded, "Garfield is a symbol for all that is self-indulgent, lazy, goofy and sometimes lovable in all of us. We love him because he is us. He hates Mondays because we do."

Check out Garfield's shop for more classic "I Hate Mondays" merch, or go for a girly update in this adorable pink kitten tee by Corner Shop.


United Bamboo 2013 Cat Fashion Calendar Kickstarter Project

"Do you like cats? Do you like fashion? Do you like keeping track of what day it is?" asks the latest Kickstarter video for United Bamboo's 2013 cat fashion calendar. In the second feline fashion-centric Kickstarter in as many months, the innovative brand is heralding the release of their famous feline fashion calendar with the promise of even more kitties in tiny outfits to come.

2013 Calendar (Pledge of $40 or more)

Released to many accolades in 2010 and 2011 before taking a break in 2012, the annual yearbook features cats dressed up in miniature replicas of United Bamboo's signature runway looks. In May of this year, the brand issued an internet-wide casting call for potential kitty models for the 2013 edition, before narrowing the field down to the twelve lucky felines who were chosen to grace its pages.

2013 Poster (Pledge of $10 or more)

Instead of going the traditional pre-order route, UB have turned to Kickstarter to try their paw at launching a spin off brand, called Catclub. In addition to the annual calendar, the feline imprint promises to feature products with pictures of cats wearing United Bamboo, all year long.

Magnet (Pledge of $15 or more)

The brand is attempting to raise $20,000 by Sept. 13 to launch Catclub, and have already enticed 55 cat lovers with a sense of humor to put $1,752 into the kitty since going live last week. To take part in this one-of-a-kind fundraiser, donors are encouraged to give as little as $10 in exchange for a 2013 cat calendar poster, while pledges of $40 and up yield a copy of the calendar itself, framed prints of the feline fashionistas, and more.

16 x 20 Framed Print (Pledge of $250 or more)

Visit the United Bamboo 2013 Cat Calendar Kickstarter Page for more information about the project, and to find out how you can make a contribution towards the future of feline fashion for yourself.


Saturday, August 25, 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, Venus the chimera cat went viral, Tucker lent a paw in a feline assisted wedding proposal, Choupette Lagerfeld turned one, Lea Michele covered Nylon wearing cat ears, cat face cupcakes changed the cat cupcake baking game, noted cool cat lady Grace Coddington designed a kitty inspired capsule collection for Balenciaga, and we caught up with a mischievous kitty named Mr. Six who was rescued from the abandoned Six Flags New Orleans amusement park as a kitten.

Elsewhere, don't forget to enter for your exclusive chance to win a Cat Birthday Party Kit from Fancy Feast! I'll be drawing the 10 lucky winners on Wed. 8/29!


This week's featured feline is a very special black cat who has brought nothing but love to his proud mama and the rest of his extended furry family!

Gemini writes (via Mama Laurie):

Hi, my name is Gemini and I am ADORABLE! My mama found me through a friend in Tennessee and she loved me before she ever met me! She flew all the way from Oklahoma to pick me up, along with my sister, Gypsy. Gypsy lives with my Gma, tho. But I have lots of company here!

I was born with a problem. My back legs don't look like other kitty legs. They're a bit short, I'm told, and they come to a purrfect point! Every day, I'm getting stronger and using them more, tho! I also have a "funny" foot in the front, they tell me. Mama said its "clubbed". But I don't know what that means. It works fine for me! Wish I had more of them sharp thingies on it, tho, like I have on my other front foot.

I have a big brother that I completely idolize! His name is Stewie and he's a year older than me. He's teaching me everything he knows! For some reason, mama says that's a BAD thing! But he takes good care of me and he has since the first day we met. He gives me baths a lot. I must me dirty! I am awfully dark... He lets me play with his tail and I love that game! Sometimes, mama says I bite too hard and he gets upset at me, then he pins me down, but I always chase him away in the end! I can take him!

I have a few other brothers and sisters, too. My oldest brother is Trouble. I try to play with him sometimes, but he's kinda grumpy. My brother and sister, George and Gracie are litter mates, whatever that means. I haven't seen George too much. He mostly runs and hides from me. Gracie just sits and watches me from a distance. Then there's my sisters, Beau Beau and Skeeter. They're litter mates, too. Almost a year older than me. They're finally letting me play games with them!

I have a brother, Wasabi, and a sister, Bunny, who look a lot different than I do. Mama calls them "dogs". They don't know how to purr! Isn't that funny? Wasabi is my favorite! He gives really good baths and he likes to take naps with me! I love to snuggle!

I have my own Facebook page, too! Okay, I share it with my brothers n sisters, but its MOSTLY mine! is the address, if you wanna check it out! In just a few weeks, I got more than 1,000 "likes"! That's a lot of friends! Mama says I'm a REALLY special boy!

Special thanks to Gemini and Laurie for sharing their uplifting tale with us this week! Wasabi and Bunny sound pretty cool, even if they are DOGS! ^_^

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 accepting submissions for my weekly Caturday post! Just email your best kitty pics to, and include your cat's name and anything else you'd like to share! I can't wait to hear from you!


Friday, August 24, 2012

Noted Cat Lover Grace Coddington Creates Kitty Inspired Capsule Collection for Balenciaga

Karl Lagerfeld may be trying to take the title as fashion's biggest cat enthusiast, but that spot has already long been claimed by Vogue Creative Director, Grace Coddington.

Coddington, who I personally fell in love with in "The September Issue," is the definition of one cool cat lady. In a 2008 Vogue editorial, the fiery redhead styled model Karen Elson in her image, complete with a pack of fluffy cats to represent her signature look.

That same year, Coddington released "The Catwalk Cats," along with longtime partner, Didier Malige. The book, inspired by the sketches Coddington would fax to Malige, "records the couple's relationship through photographs (Malige's) and drawings (Coddington's) that document the couple's highly entertaining private and work lives through the eyes of their feline friends." The sketches also played a role in Grace's fashionable 70th birthday bash in 2011, where they appeared on menus and even on her cat-themed birthday cake.

Grace's latest turn in conquering catladydom will once again put her darling drawings on display. Fashionista reports that the Creative Director has teamed up with Nicolas Ghesquiere to create a capsule collection for Balenciaga, inspired by her calico Persian, Pumpkin. The collection includes the “Pumpkin Papier” tote bag ($1,000), and two printed “Pumpkin” scarves ($395 and $495 each), which include her sketches of the fluffy kitty modeling vintage Balenciaga looks. 20 percent of the proceeds from the sale of the stylish items will be donated to the Animal Rescue Fund of the Hamptons.

The tote will officially make its debut in Balenciaga stores on Fashion's Night Out (Sept. 6) in Los Angeles and New York City, where Coddington herself will be making an appearance, however, those hoping to catch a glimpse of her kitty companions are likely to be disappointed. As she told Martha Stewart during a cat-centric appearance on her talk show in 2010: "They don't really like other cats. They like each other. They don't like publicity."


Thursday, August 23, 2012

Venus the Amazing Chimera Cat Is Black, Orange, and Adorable All Over


When Venus the Chimera cat's picture began making the rounds on the internet last week, many people questioned the authenticity of the photo depicting the cat who seemingly had two faces. Fortunately, in an age where Photoshop is the norm, sometimes what you see really is what you get, and Venus, the cat with half a black face with a green eye and half an orange face with a blue eye, is a real life Harvey Dent -- albeit a whole lot cuter!

While there is some debate as to whether she is a chimera or a mosaic cat (blah blah science!), there is no question that the three-year-old is a gentle and loving kitty, whose owner says loves being babied. Named after the Greek goddess of beauty and love, Venus was adopted from a dairy farm in North Carolina in 2009 after her adoptive family saw photos of her online. Her instantly smitten mama was initially drawn to the kitten because she looked like a combination of her two cats (an orange tabby and black tux), but maintains, "She is such a wonderful cat and I'd be just as in love with her even if she wasn't so pretty."

After coming to the realization that her unique cat had gone viral, Venus's owner started a Facebook page dedicated the famous feline, which has already swelled to over 13,000 admirers since August 14.


Lea Michele Covers Nylon Wearing Cat Ears

Noted cat lover and "Glee" actress Lea Michele is Nylon magazine's September cover girl, sporting a sparkly pair of cat ears to convey her kitty pride. The star's feline turn is significant, in that it pushes the cat ear fashion trend even further mainstream, showing that it's ok to wear the headbands as an everyday accessory, and not just on Halloween.

After last year's explosion of cat hats, innovations like the Necomimi Brainwave Cat Ears by Neurowear and the popularity of a cat-ear inspired hairstyle sweeping the streets of Tokyo, have all lent a paw in igniting the cat ear craze.

World renowned Parisian hat maker Maison Michel, no stranger to whipping up quirky (and expensive) feline inspired chapéus, has led the pack, with a staggering $1,290 cat headband, constructed out of wool-crepe and embellished with faceted resin beads and glitter.

Elsewhere, European retailers are making the trend more accessible, offering an array of styles at street ready prices. The ears Michele models on Nylon are on sale for $13.62 from ASOS, while Topshop is offering pearl, lace, and studded designs, all for $20 or less.


Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Exclusive Fancy Feast Cat Birthday Party Kit Giveaway! (10 Winners!)

Our cats are treasured members of our families, so why shouldn't we celebrate their birthday or gotcha day in the same way we would with any other loved ones?

All month long, I've partnered with Fancy Feast to share cat birthday stories, pictures, and tips, on how to make the most out of their special day.

Pet birthday parties are a growing trend, and whether you throw an all-out bash like Elena did for Wolfie's 20th birthday, or an intimate at-home affair like Karl Lagerfeld recently did for his cat Choupette, there are a variety of ways to make it a memorable event that you and your kitty will never forget.

Enter To Win!

Fancy Feast has created 10 limited edition cat birthday party kits, which they have exclusively offered to give away to 10 lucky Catsparella readers! Each kit contains everything you need to get your party off to the purrfect start, including:

Party Hats
Happy Birthday Banner
Adorable Cat Greeting Card
Instruction Sheet for making a Fancy Feast Can "Cake"

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 10 winners be will chosen in a random drawing next Wednesday, August 29th at 5:00PM EST. This giveaway is open to U.S. residents only. One entry per person, please.

Good luck to all, and be sure to like the Fancy Feast on Facebook for all of their latest offers and updates!

(If you have trouble leaving a comment, please email me at

[Comments are now closed. Thanks for entering!]


The Tiniest Tiger Cat Quilted Hipster Bag Giveaway Winner!

Thank you to everyone who entered The Tiniest Tiger Cat Quilted Hipster Giveaway!

I used to determine the winner, and it selected comment #9 belonging to who Jennifer who wrote, "So cute!!!"

The Tiniest Tiger Hipster can be purchased directly through Triple T Studios, where a portion of the net profits go to benefit global conservation projects. To learn about The Tiniest Tiger's Conversation Cub Club, visit their blog and Facebook page for more information.


Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Tucker The Cat Lends A Paw In Surprise Kitty Proposal

Partners In Crime

Back in June we witnessed a furry wedding proposal involving a kitten named Luke, while this week brings us the heartwarming tale of Dhare and Becka, a cat-loving couple who recently got engaged, thanks to a little help from their beloved cat, Tucker.

Becka posted the news of Dhare's touching proposal on Reddit, and I followed up with her husband-to-be on all of the details of how he popped the question to his girlfriend of 7 years.


How did Tucker come into your lives?

Becka and I adopted Tucker almost 4.5 years ago from a kill shelter in New York. Tucker had been laying in a cage for 2 weeks and was on the docket to be euthanized. As the other cats were yelling for our attention, Tucker laid quietly in his cage. For some reason, his defeated posture caught my attention and Becka and I knew he was coming home with us.


We also adopted another cat that day - Seven of Nine. A grey short haired cat who was the loudest of the bunch clamoring to get our attention.

For the last 4.5 years, both cats have been a huge part of our lives. Becka and I like to go upstate to get away from the noise of the city and we always bring our cats with us.


What inspired you to include Tucker in the proposal?

Involving Tucker during the proposal made perfect sense for me considering how important he is to our lives. I've used Tucker in a lot of my photographs and he's always been a trooper.

How did the proposal go down?

I woke up at 5am to tie the ring around Tucker's neck. As I carefully went back to sleep, I prayed that Tucker wouldn't shake the ring off and eat it. I awoke to Tucker jumping on my stomach - letting me know it was breakfast time. As he walked over to Becka, she woke up and noticed the ring. And obviously she said yes.

Special thanks Dhare and Becka for sharing such a personal moment from their lives with us! We wish them a long, beautiful life together, filled with lots of love, happiness, and kitties!


Cat Cupcake Tuesdays

I've featured dozens of cupcakes decorated to look like cats, but Patti Paige from Baked Ideas Custom Baking created one very unique batch, that resemble feline faces all on their own!

After baking them into the shape of cat heads using a tinfoil ball to create the indentation for the ears, the cupcakes were decorated with colorful buttercream frosting, chocolate Cheerios, licorice, sprinkles, pink candy-coated sunflower seeds, and rainbow colored Airhead Sour Belts!

Click over to Patti's website to scope out the rest of all the yummy details!

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!



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