Category: Articles

Vintage Cuteness by Harry Whittier Frees!

Harry_Whittier_Frees1Back in the day, when cat’s still knew how to spell, American photographer Harry Whittier Frees (1879–1953) dressed them up in silly costumes and made them pose as humans. Similar to the Brighton cats, the result was a vintage version of the LOLCat phenomenon. His mother assisted him in designing and sewing special outfits for the cats to hold them in position while he would patiently wait for the shot he had in mind.

These unusual photographs of real animals were made possible only by patient, unfailing kindness on the part of the photographer at all times.

Speed is essential in securing these pictures, but very often it is impossible to be quick enough. Young animals cannot hold a pose any better than human babies, and the situation is complicated when they are called on to be precocious in situations naturally foreign to them.

Frees’s career as a photographer of  cats and other animals in fancy dress began in 1906, when a  party hat was passed around the  table accidentally landed on a cat’s head. He took a photo and a career was born. He sold some of his early shots to a postcard printer, who turned out to be keen on  more. With time and practice, his sets became more elaborate and most often included various props. His photos were continued to be featured on postcards and also appeared in calendars, books, advertisments, and magazines.

Check out our selection here:

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Cat Bath: A Visual Guide!

Here’s an essential visual guide on how to give your cat a bath:

The first visual clearly shows best practice. A fully functional cat will most elegantly take care of the bathing on its own. No need to interfere on your part at all.

The second demonstration of a cat bath shown below suggests that there may be potential for things to go awfully wrong (some might even feel this represents reality for a majority of felines).

What it's like getting him into the water.

As commenters have suggested, if this comes closer to your experience of bathing your cat than the best-practice example shown above, the cat might be broken. Your options in this case are,

a) reset your cat to factory settings

b) try this rather blunt approach:

The latest rage in cat bath technology

While most definitely lacking in elegance and form, the result is likely to be a clean (if pissed off) cat!

Exciting Kitty Job Opportunity!


You may have heard, the first London cat cafe is coming: Lady Dinah’s Cat Emporium!

Crowd funding was a success and all the preparations seem well in progress, soon soon lovely London will catch up to Japan and have its own cat cafe, in a yet undisclosed venue.  The concept is as simple as it is compelling, coffee and cakes in a cozy and friendly atmosphere + lots of cats to play and cuddle with! Really quite baffling no one in London has thought of opening one until now, isn’t it?

Meanwhile, the recruitment process for the most important employees of Lady Dinah’s Cat Emporium has begun. Yes, the kitties of course! Continue reading for all the details!

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LOLCat teh Exhibishun!!! Not to be missed…

Not to be missed under any circumstances:  LOLCAT TEH EXHIBISHUN!

Head over to the Framers Gallery in London for a unique and creative take on the LOLCat phenomenon by a variety of graphic designers, illustrators, photographers, animators and writers (find out more about the artists).

Here’s a (not entirely serious) news item on the show:

but rest assured, the exhibition is seriously taking place now!

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Japanese Cat Cafes FTW!

cat cafe sign tokyo
CC Flickr user pixelhut

Have a spare hour in Tokyo at your disposal? Here’s the most kittylicious way to pass your time: Cat Cafes!!!

Basically, have coffee and cake whilst chilling out with cute cats – simples as that!

The trend started over a decade ago in Taiwan and has since spread across East Asia. In Tokyo, where living space is scarce and many landlords don’t allow pets in appartments, cat cafes are understandably in particularly high demand and you will find them in nearly all areas of the city. There seems to be hope for Europe as well – the first cafe neko (neko is Japanese for cat) opened in Vienna, Austria earlier this year – keep them coming!

cats and gaming at cat cafe
CC Flickr user Ari Helminen

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LOLCats are more than LOLs, scientifically speaking!

Find out what social research at the London School of Economics and Political Science concludes about LOLCats!

If it fits i sits white cat in glass bowl

LOLCats have, maybe against all odds, become a constant in the fast-paced and ever-changing interwebs. With myriads of websites catering to the creation and dispersal of the popular kitty captions (or capshunz in the appropriate lingo) still going strong, they remain one of the most widely shared items in social media, blogs and are (who would have thought) being e-mailed around as ever.

As promised a while back, we will now take a closer look at what constitutes the undeniable cultural relevance of the LOLCat phenomenon. By no means only a laughing matter, LOLCats as a timely and ongoing form of cultural production are sure to have a tale or two to tell about the social world.

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Very cool cat (well, sort of) tattoo!

Getting cat tattoos right? Not the easiest mission out there – try searching the internet for halfway decent specimens and  you will soon find that the (not so) fine line to tacky is crossed more often than not. Well, I can thankfully report that some do manage. Political commentator and activist Mona Eltahawy recently adorned her forearm with what must be the coolest cat tattoo out there!

Mona Eltahawy with Sekhmet cat goddess tattoo
from Molly Crabapple

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Back to the Roots!


Flotsam and Catsam is rather fond of all things vintage and cat related historical tidbits. Let’s take a step back in time and honour the man and the machine that brought us the very first cat video ever! Continue reading to find out more about Thomas Edison’s Kinetoscope and, of course, to view the first cat video produced for it!

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The Cats Have Purred @ The First Internet Cat Video Festival!

Img by D. Carlo, Walker Art Center




Last night, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis (US) hosted the very first Internet Cat Video Festival – yes, a film festival featuring all your favourite silly, cute and what not cat videos.

In best Oscars fashion, the audience was presented with a good hour of footage in the video categories comedy, drama, animated, foreign, documentary, musical, art house, and people’s choice. Roughly 3’000 were expected and no less than 10’000 showed up at the event!

The people’s choice award, aptly named the Golden Kitty, was chosen by the audience via online voting and revealed on the night. Find out whether your personal favourite won and more…

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Top 5 kittylicious TV ads!

Photo by flickr user Leo Reynolds

Kitties are an ever-recurrent staple in TV advertisement, with approximately 50% of cat ads promoting cat related products and the other half seemingly unrelated products and services. But, doesn’t everything just look so much better with a cat in/on/etc. it? Enjoy the top five TV ads featuring cats of the past five or so years. They have been chosen for entertainment value and/or cuteness factor, rather than for any professional criteria from the advertisement industry. Also, no ads where cats come to (or seem to come to) harm are included – just won’t have that.

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