Fall 2019 Reflections: Can This Year End Already? Horrible Vets, Shady Finland’s Post, And The Darkest Month

Hi, everyone! I thought this could be a fun, interesting, and maybe a bit intimate topic to explore every quarter of the year: one for winter, one for spring, one for summer, and one for fall. I am not big into all the reflecting at the end of the year, because I have bad memory, and also we’re wired to remember more hardships than good times. And I want my life to be filled with as many good things as possible!

These last few weeks (or months, rather) have been challenging. They always are when you’re a small business owner, and the busy holiday times hit & you’re trying to keep up with everything, but this fall has drained me already. Don’t get me wrong – I have NO problem with the amount of orders I’ve been receiving – after being in business for almost 5 years, I am pretty used to the high volume of orders during the fall season, so all is good in that department. The main things affecting my poor mental and physical health are the outside factors.

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Sleepy Queen Beliza.

Let’s start with one of my cats having a slight ear infection (plain yeast infection, nothing big, should be over in no time). Or that’s what we thought. Our usual vet has retired, so we’ve been on the mission to find a new one. Well, we thought we found a decent vet – she spayed Vampiria, and has said that she loves working with fearful animals, to which I thought “Awesome! Bacha always freaks out when she goes to the vet, so this lady might be a good fit!” Uhm, ABSOLUTELY NOT.

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My beautiful green-eyed princess Bacha.

So, we bring the cat in to get checked for ear infection. She takes swabs and brings them to the lab, comes back, tries to take a closer look into the cats ears – one ear is fine, but she shakes her head a couple of times, when the vet tries to look into the infected ear. What our previous vet would do in these situations? He’d just tell us how to hold her, or would invite his assistant to hold the cat properly. What does this new vet do? She sedates the cat without a second thought. Yep, she sedates the cat, because the cat (completely not aggressive, very friendly, has never scratched anyone) shook her infected ear couple of times. The vet CLEARLY has no idea how to properly hold the cat, and it seems she’s also a bit afraid of it. Then she takes a look at the ear, when the kitty falls asleep, complains about some gunk in the ears (hm-hm, the cat has an ear infection on top of being an oily Sphynx – shocker, she has some gunk!), then invites her assistant to clean out the ears. Ok, assistant comes, all is fine, until she starts digging all over the ears using this huge cotton bud. And she’s being rough! The cat is not completely sedated, only to the level of where she can barely move, and oh man, you can see she feels everything! She started trying to get away, digging, scratching, trying to cry while she was “sedated”, and she was clearly in a lot of pain. I give a few mad looks to the assistant, she calms down a bit. Oh, and can we just talk about the fact that she had the most disgusted face, when Vampiria shook her head (again, while “sedated”), and some of the ear cleaner got on her? It seems like all of these people are in the wrong profession.

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A beautiful moment from Vampiria’s first ever photoshoot. She loved every moment of it!

So, after paying a hefty bill, we came back home. And now we need to deal with a cat, who is absolutely terrified of us touching her ears. She used to snooze and purr while her ears were being cleaned, and after the vet visit we HAVE to make a purrito out of her, because otherwise she would injure herself and scratch our eyes out while trying to get away. She was never afraid of vets, she loved people, and would purr and give headbutts whenever we brought her to vet. She’s a completely different cat now. And it breaks my heart so much.

Oh, but there’s more! The “amazing” check up appointment a week later. The vet who checked and treated Vampiria for the first time, was busy in surgery, so another vet took her in. There was a slight hope, that was quickly destroyed. I wasn’t there, but my husband was. So, he brings Vampiria in, and the vet is already preparing the medicine to get her sedated. My husband says a firm “No” to the sedation (after Vampiria was so traumatized, there was no way we’d put her through that again). The vet tries to argue, but gives in, and comes to check her ears without sedation. And it went completely fine! The infection was gone, the ears looked fine, and she had absolutely no trouble checking everything.

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Playful Bacha, as always!

It seems like sedation is a common practice there. Easy to brag about being good with fearful pets, when you just sedate them, right? While living here in the capital for almost 7 years, we had luck of trying out about 9-10 different vets. This usually would happen if we needed a follow up appointment, and our usual vet was away, we’d need to go to a different one in his clinic. We also tried 3 or 4 different clinics over the years, in hopes we could find some vet who’s closer to our home (our usual vet was about 45 minutes away). Now, no shade to female vets over here in Finland, cause I am sure there are good ones out there, but we had an absolutely awful experience with EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM. Our usual vet? An experienced man, who was always quick, super professional, knows how to handle the animals properly, and had a great customer service. Our cardiologist? Again, a man, very professional, handles the cats quickly, gives accurate diagnosis, etc. Pleasure to work with.

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More playtime! It’s always so much fun to do photoshoots!

Now, the female vets. There are very few male vets in comparison to females over here, so you usually end up with a female vet. Some of the things that many female vets share (from my personal experience when visiting about 8 different ones over the years):
– lack of knowledge on how to handle and hold the cat;
– being VERY afraid of getting scratched – once the cat moves even a bit, it needs to be sedated, cause it’s a killer cat;
– lack of education in the medicine that is out there. Now, hear me out on this one. I noticed that a lot of female vets tend to try to modernize the field a bit too much. I remember maybe 4 years ago, one of our cats got flu. Simple to treat? Well, not really, as we found out later! So, our vet is on vacation, we go to this female vet we’ve never been to before. She checks the cat, confirms it’s a simple flu, prescribes the meds. What kind of meds? Some kind of antibiotics, that are very fancy and new, and cost almost a €100/pack. OK, we suck it up, and buy two packs as per her recommendation. We give the meds for two weeks, absolutely no improvement, if anything, the cat’s getting worse. Finally, our vet is back from vacation. We pack up the cat, and go to him. He checks the cat, asks what meds she was given. We tell the name (can’t remember anymore as it’s been a while), and he just gets this look on his face like “Yeah, I know the meds, but…really???? It’s a new medicine, but older ones work just fine”. So, as his usual straight forward self, he prescribes meds that cost €15/bottle, and the cat is healthy within a week. Never again!
– Making the situation sound worse than it really is. You know how usually when you go in to get some kind of diagnosis, and the doctors keep everything to themselves until they know what’s wrong? Well, not when it comes to vets over here! Imagine, you had a headache for a while, go to the doctors office, and the doctor behaves something like this: “Oh my gosh, how long has this been going on??? A week? You had headache for a week?! You’re so irresponsible!!! We need to do an X-Ray, a cat scan, heart scan, do all the blood and allergy tests, flush out your intestines, check your bladder, and checking your eyes would be good too. If we don’t do that, you may die within 24 hours!”. So much for not freaking out the people, right? That’s how many vets we’ve been to behave, by suggesting all the possible tests, even though they may be completely unrelated to the actual problem. Oh, and add the slight freaked out face!
– Being afraid of any type of dirt. “Eww, there’s a piece of grass in your dogs fur”, “Ugh, your cat’s ears have some gunk”, “Oh, I see you haven’t brushed your pet’s teeth today, looks awful” are just a few things I have heard over the years.
– I won’t even start about the lack of knowledge when it comes to Sphynx breed.

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Pretty lady in red.

So, we keep looking. For a vet, who’s a man, and not a woman. We think we found one not too far away from us, and they seem to have good reviews from other cat owners, so that definitely gives us some hope! We will have to vaccinate Bacha and Beliza next month, so fingers crossed it will be a good experience!

Now, Finland’s Post aka Posti. Very shady! It’s crazy how a government owned company got so corrupt. I mean, sure, it’s not shady at all that the company’s directors salary increased by over 60% in mere 3 years, where he’s been earning about 84k/month in 2019. This has caused a public outrage (righteously so), and so he resigned. I mean, sure, when you keep on cutting workers’ salaries, and increasing prices for your crappy services (the prices increased by 25-30% in the past 4.5 years), you become a millionaire. The whole management team there is just as shady – at least the director apologized. And so they have yet another strike. Can’t say I am surprised – they want to cut off workers’ salaries by 30%, completely ignoring the original work agreements that were signed. Uh, bye Felicia!

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Baby boy rocking pastel rainbows!

It’s just such a mess. They tried to hire additional workers to do the job during the strike (which is illegal, because Posti is a government owned company), they threatened to fire the wokers if they don’t come to work because of strike (which is again, illegal). Road deliveries just shut down, international airport that’s responsible for mail, is shut down, railroad and ship companies will join the strike too. Many other unions have already joined. It’s mindblowing that a government owned company even has a right to negotiate. They’ve been “negotiating” the whole week, now they will meet again on Monday, aka today. I wish this sh*tshow would end already, I am so done with it.

It’s stressful, cause my customers’ packages will be delayed yet again as this is the second strike this fall. And while 99% of customers are absolutely amazing, and understanding, and patient, there will always be that 0.1% that will be rude, outraged, and will blast me all over the place for it. But that comes with the job I guess! It’s crazy how nowadays some people don’t know how to communicate with others without being mean and vicious.

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Vampiria’s second photoshoot. Still loving it!

All the strikes probably aged me by 5 years, and added like 200 gray hair on my head! I haven’t been able to sleep well either, which makes my fibromyalgia flare up even more. I am trying to get back on the straighter path though!

And, of course, the dark autumn. November is the darkest month over here in Finland. It literally looked like nighttime the whole day today. Can’t wait for the snow, so it will at least be brighter, and we’ll get some sun, hopefully.

73187900_10212374906807351_3734771949918748672_n2019 has been such a wild ride. Good things happened, bad things happened, but we’re all trying to stay alive in this sinking ship I guess! I still wait for the new year, and am looking forward to starting things fresh. In order to end this on a positive note, here are a few things I’ve been really grateful for this fall season.
– Cats, of course! Those purring balls of warmth and softness are the best things ever. They’re so loving, and always keep me company, no matter how great or bad I feel. Cats really do make the world a better place!
– Awesome customers! For every not-such-a-nice-person that I meet, there are 100 amazing ones! I love reading lovely reviews, chatting to people privately, and see all the beautiful pictures of their kitties. Whenever I feel down, stressed, or unsure, all the heartwarming reviews and messages make my day.
– Music, that I used to enjoy as a kid and teenager. Looking at you, Robbie Williams!
– All people, who are close to me, and are trying their best to be helpful during these challenging times!

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Aether wishes you a great fall season!

So, this is my reflection on the fall of 2019. Will we talk on this blog more, or will this be the last post of the year? Only time will tell. But for now, I wish you a wonderful week ahead, and stay cozy wherever you are!

asta

Review: Zooplus Cat Den – Yay or Nay?

Hello, everyone! It seems like it’s been literally forever since I last wrote a post on PurringPyjamas blog. Mostly it’s because of a very busy holiday season. However, today I felt the need to do something I’ve been planning for a while – review this super cute looking cat den.

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I saw this cat den on zooplus.de website whilst shopping some cat treats, and I knew immediately I had to have it. I ordered it in November, so I truly believe that after having it for quite a while I can tell an honest opinion about the product.

 

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The den is made out of felt and has a little fluffy white cushion inside, which is soft and nice for your cat to lay on. It also has a cute little decoration that’s stitched on (see the picture above) which I was a bit worried about in the beginning. However, my worries were soon gone: it is stitched so well and is so close to the surface of the cave, that after few times of trying to bite it off, my cats just gave up and left it alone.

 

The cat den is INCREDIBLY warm. Because it is made of felt, all the warmth that cat’s body produces stays inside and circulates. Whenever you put your hand in the cave while cats are sleeping, you can feel that the air inside is quite a few degrees higher than the room temperature. And my cats absolutely love it!

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I also washed the den once, because Coco one day decided to throw up on it (yes, we all have experienced cats throwing up in the least pleasant places!). It was very easy and quick to wash: I gently hand washed it with warm water and laundry detergent. It dried up fairly quickly, and looked just like new. Sizing is also good: my 3 average size cats fit in it perfectly!

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So, all in all I can say that this den is definitely worth having! It’s soft, warm, easy to maintain, looks cute and is definitely worth the price! I can’t remember the exact price, but I paid about €20 for the den. I’ve had it since November, and it still looks like new, which is quite rare when I have 3 cats, who like to destroy things. You can find more information on the cave in the UK version website (I chose it because it is in English), however, Zooplus sells to many different countries: Information about the cat den (UK).

If you have any questions, feel free to leave them in the comments, and I’ll get back to you! I hope you all are having a wonderful day!

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asta

Another Snowsuit: Royal Blues In White Winter

After making a snowsuit last year, throughout the year I kept on receiving some requests on making another one. Unfortunately, most of the time I was too busy to take on a project like that and people just weren’t willing to wait. However, after my little vacation I was contacted by one lady, who wanted a cute blue snowsuit for her little kitty due to the fact that she’s so small and gets cold easily. I had some free time, so… why not? Here’s the result!

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This snowsuit has 2 layers of knit instead of fleece inner layer. The main reason for this is that knit offers so much more flexibility and lets the kitty to move more easily. Fleece doesn’t have as much stretchiness, and even though it’s very warm & soft, it might restrict the movement of the cat, especially when it comes to something as thick as the snowsuit.

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In the front the snowsuit has a zipper and 3 paw buttons, just like the previous one. It also has holes for the harness and tail. The hood is also casual and is there more for the style than function – the kitty has fur, so she didn’t need her head or tail to be very well covered. This snowsuit also has waterproof fabric on the paws, so that kitty’s paws wouldn’t get all wet, cold and uncomfortable.

It was also easier to make this snowsuit than the previous one as I already had some experience and more knowledge. Also, it didn’t require as much sewing, so it was definitely quicker to make. Overall I really liked making it and would probably consider doing it again in the future!

I hope you all are having a wonderful day!

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asta

Love For Cats & Neon Hearts

As autumn is quickly approaching and warm summer days soon will be long gone, I decided to play with colors. It’s always nice to have something colorful around in the wintertime, isn’t it? But this time I didn’t hold myself back with muted colors – I went for the bright neon ones! And – of course – I combined all the brightness with the love we have for our best friends, and that’s how these neon heart sweaters were born.

The first sweater is dark gray color with 3 rows of bright pink hearts around the collar. I really love the pop of color that it gives to otherwise simple and plain sweater. There’s nothing wrong with being simple (I always think that often less is more), but in this case I think that these little hearts are a very cute addition and would brighten up everyone’s mood instantly. The yarn is 75% wool & 25% polyamide. If you’d like to get one, you can do it here: Pink Neon Hearts.

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This sweater was a bit of an experiment. I just couldn’t make up my mind as to whether I should stick to more conservative style or should I just go all in. In the end I decided to make it more playful, therefore it has so much more bright colors than the other sweaters from this range. There’s only one sweater available, so it’s definitely a one of a kind choice for everyone who isn’t afraid of some colorful things! The blue yarn is 75% wool & 25% polyamide and the bright lime green one is 100% acrylic. You can get this beautiful sweater here: Lime Green Pop.

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And the last, but definitely not the least is this cute deep blue sweater with neon lime green hearts. It is more conservative than the previous one and will fulfill the needs of everyone, who wants something more reserved, but still likes some pop of color. This sweater is made of yarn that consists of 75% wool & 25% polyamide. You can get it over here: Green Neon Hearts.

I hope all of you are having a wonderful week ahead!

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asta

Custom order: mommy & kitty matching sweaters to spice up the autumn

Back in the autumn of 2015, I was contacted by a nice lady, who mentioned that she’d like to get matching sweaters for her kitty – Gwennie – and herself. At first I was a little cautious and a bit concerned, because I don’t really make clothes for people and the last time I made a sweater for a person was ages ago. I expressed that to her, but she still said she wanted me to give it a go. She didn’t really have any certain deadline, so we decided that once I get better (I was sick at the time) and have more free time, we’ll talk more about it and see what we can come up with.

So here came spring of 2016, and we started planning what we’ll do. She looked through my sweaters, chose few designs and colors. In the end she wanted her sweater to be inspired by this cat sweater that I have in my shop:

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When it comes to color, she really liked the mustard yarn that is available in my shop. Once we decided on the design & color, she sent me her measurements along with the wishes on the shape of the sweater, length of the sleeves, etc.

At first we were talking about me making a sweater, but eventually she decided that she would like a sweater-dress instead that would be snuggly and comfy to wear with leggings for example. She gave me the length she wished for the sweater-dress, and then my work started. It took a little trial and error, but in the end she was satisfied with the result, when I sent the pictures of a finished product.

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Even though she was satisfied with the sweater-dress, I couldn’t really completely relax until she received the item. I was constantly thinking: but what if in real life the sweater-dress doesn’t meet her expectations? Or what if it doesn’t fit right? These thoughts kept on crossing my mind until few weeks later when the buyer received the package left me these reviews:

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That was a big relief! Actually, I really thought that it will take much longer and will be much harder to make this sweater-dress for a person, because sweaters meant for cats are so much different in their structure and are knitted in different way. But… As long as I have another satisfied customer, I am happy! And I truly gained more experience, which is always a great thing. We have this saying in my country that “You won’t carry the weight of the knowledge on your shoulders”, which basically means that whatever you learn, won’t do bad to you.

But for now… Have a beautiful day everyone and I wish your week will go well!

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asta

Soft colors and bright moods

It’s been a while since I last posted over here. But time flies so fast! And so with it everything not only passes, but there also appear new exciting things! And that’s what this quick blog post is about – the new cute sweaters that are available in PurringPyjamas Etsy shop.

The first two sweaters I actually made while being on the road. I took a little road trip in the Southern Finland, so while sitting in the passenger’s seat and enjoying the view I decided to also do something useful. Especially that I just got the yarn these two sweaters are made of. Both sweaters are crocheted. The first sweater’s yellow  yarn is 100% acrylic, while the shiny green one has 60% mohair and 40% acrylic. You can get them both or either one over here: Yellow Dreams, Tortie Fluffs.

Moving forward we find stripes. Because who doesn’t love them? The first sweater has beautiful yellow, blue, white, green & dark gray stripes. The yarn is really high quality and made in the UK, so I was happily waiting for it to arrive.  It’s called after the bird blue tit (see the picture below), and I think it looks gorgeous! You can get it here: Blue Tit Kitty.

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Here’s another crocheted sweater. It is very soft, because it’s made from the yarn meant for knitting baby clothes, so believe me when I say that it will not irritate even the most sensitive kitty’s skin! It has a beautiful pattern and is made of 100% acrylic yarn. This striped beauty is available here: Blue Stripes.

And now let’s go from something soft and light to something soft and really warm. This beautiful ombre effect sweater is made of 70% acrylic and 30% wool yarn. It is incredibly soft and keeps the warmth well, while also letting the skin to breath. It is available in 2 sizes, and you can get it here: Soft Ombre.

And now let’s talk about the classics – red and black. The red sweater is made of 75% wool & 25% polyamide yarn and is incredibly stretchy and warm. Black sweaters are made of 100% polyacrylic yarn, which means they’re incredibly soft and will not irritate kitties’ skin. And how about the cute beads they’re decorated with? I am sure your kitty would like it! You can get them here: Red Stars, Red Shells, Purple Beads.

And the last, but definitely not the least is this very fun sweater. You know, it is perfect for times when you kind of wish to pet something fluffy, but your naked sphinx kitty just ain’t doing it. This cute blue sweater is made of 100% acrylic yarn and is incredibly soft. You can get it over here: Blue fluffs.

I wish you all have a wonderful day and good start of the week!

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asta

From classy lace & pearls to modern mohair & crystals

Hello everyone! It’s been a while since I last posted over here showing off the new designs in my shop. Today I want to share with you some of the designs I’ve been thinking about for a long time, just didn’t have enough time to actually make them. I hope you will like what you see, ‘cause I am really satisfied with the result!

Firstly, let’s start with classy things. These sweaters feature beautiful lace flowers and pearls, so your kitty will be classy from head (or ear!) to toe! The black sweater is incredibly soft, because it is made from 100% polyacrylic yarn, so it will not irritate even the most sensitive skin. It is also a great sweater for cats who don’t like wearing clothes or they have never worn any sweater before. The blue sweater is made from yarn, that consists of 30% wool and 70% polyamide. You can get the sweaters here: Black lace & pearls, Blue lace & pearls.

Now here comes something modern and fancy. As soon as I saw this bright colored yarn in the shop, I just knew I had to have it, ‘cause it would make some great material for amazing sweaters! And I would say I was right! I really enjoyed making these sweaters, trying to fit different beads, choosing best colors, variations, etc. Overall, I am really satisfied with the result. The yarn is 63% mohair, 27% acrylic & 10% polyester, which means that sweaters are not only very nice and fluffy looking, but also extremely warm and super stretchy. And for all of you who love mohair sweaters out there, let me tell you a secret… At the moment, I am working on more sweaters from mohair yarn! Whoop, I am guessing your kitties will stay very warm and stylish during this winter! But for now, you can get these gorgeous sweaters over here: Green mohair, Pink mohair.

Now these two sweaters might cheat you into thinking they’re made of mohair yarn too… But no, they’re not! 🙂 But it doesn’t make them any less beautiful or worthy! These sweaters are made of yarn that consists of 44% wool, 24% acrylic, 20% polyester & 10% polyamide. The sweaters are very warm, stretchy, and, of course, very stylish! You can get them here: Purple crystal sweater, Orange crystal sweater.

This sweater was made without having any prior idea as to what it will look like in the end. I just grabbed the yarn, started knitting and watched where it would take me. And so that’s how this funky looking hoodie was made! The yarn is 50% wool and 50% acrylic, which makes this sweater very warm, but it also breaths very well. If you’re feeling like having something a little funky today, check out this sweater on my Etsy shop: Funky hoodie.

Here is another interesting design – this little curly vest. It will keep your kitty super comfy, because it doesn’t restrict the movement, but still warms your kitty. This vest is made of 100% wool yarn. You can get right here: Curly vest.

And last, but definitely not least is this green sweater, which has this super interesting pattern. I’ve had this yarn for so long, but I could never think of any ideas as to what I would do with it. But one evening I sat down and decided to finally start knitting something from it. I looked through so many different knitting patterns, and this one just stood out. As soon as I saw it, I knew that this is the right pattern for this sweater. The sweater is very thick and made from 100% wool, so it will keep your kitty very warm even on the coldest nights. You can get it here: Green braided sweater.

And here are couple additional shots from the photoshoot 😉

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asta

When water turned into wine

And what exactly happened when water turned into wine? Awesome yarn was born, that’s what! 🙂 And from it came this furry sweater for a naked kitty.

This sweater isn’t a new addition to my shop, but I wasn’t satisfied with the previous pictures, so I finally decided it’s time to change it. I found the old sweater, fixed it up a little bit, grabbed Beliza and shot some pictures. I think it turned out pretty good.

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This shoot was quite challenging – all Beliza wanted to do was to lay and look out of the window. And yes, the picture you see above was one of the two shots of her actually sitting. Anyway, we got some good pictures, and that’s what matters!

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Yarn is 70% acrylic and 30% wool. It’s quite fluffy and soft because of the acrylic and the wool gives that nice warmth to it. This style sweater is available in many sizes and colors: wine, peach, black, orange, white, pale green, bright blue and bluish purple. Nice selection of colors to suit everyone’s taste. Oh, and did I mention that the rose charm you see is actually made of antique silver? And those little stones are natural agate. Isn’t it awesome? It will suit any fancy kitty’s taste. You can find the sweater over here: Fluffy sweater.

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asta

Buried under the leaves

Can you believe today is the last day of September? Gosh, where all this time is going?! It’s hard to believe that soon we’ll be waiting for the first snow and exchanging gifts on Christmas. I am not sure how much I am feeling all the autumn spirit, but cats are definitely there! Even though they still love spending their time in the balcony, more and more often they choose to rather stay inside under the blanket. And so this autumnal sweater was inspired by them.

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I’ve had this yarn for quite short time, because I wanted to do something with it. A lot. I think it reflects autumn so well – it is soft, warm and those brown & burgundy colors are simply gorgeous.

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Only one sweater is available in size XXS, because I could find only small amount of this yarn to buy. It can be made with sleeves too, so all depends on your wishes only. Yarn is 100% wool, so believe me – when I say it’s warm, it really is.

And here are some more pictures from shoot! Enjoy!

Oh yes, here comes the dessert! They are so addicted to all the vitamin pastes and treats. But they earn it! :)

Oh yes, here comes the dessert! They are so addicted to all the vitamin pastes and treats. But they earn it! 🙂

Hey, where's my paste? I want mooooreee!

Hey, where’s my paste? I want mooooreee!

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asta