Wooly Dreams Design

Hidden costs of Handpainted Needlepoint


The Real Adventures of theWooly Dreams Cat Models

Mysty watching the flashing light on my Powerbook next to the "table" piled with current work projects

Currently, I live with two Cats who inspire me to create whimsical cat designs and act as my models when they're not outside sunning themselves on the driveway or chasing field Mice.

The first is a solid black Cat named Mysterious and the second was a found emaciated and starving orphan black and white kitty brought to me one dark night 3 plus years ago by a fellow Cat lover! Naturally I took her in, after all what's another Cat - it wasn't like I had to spend a fortune since I already had Mysty I thought........

In the first month after Missy Mew moved in - we paid $300 in vet's fees due to shots, spaying AND because she came home one day limping on three feet! Silly cat must have sprained a front paw falling out of a tree - so we took her to the vet who couldn't find anything wrong with Missy after x-rays and all........and guess what? Missy started running around on all four paws right after the vet visit, zooming up and down trees nimbly like the neighborhood Squirrels, leaping from branch to branch like a flying Cat.

Mysty makes a habit of leaping on top of the tall Grandfather's Clock in the hallway and eyeing the world from that perch! It always makes me laugh when I see Mysty's eyes widen as the clock strikes and chimes underneath her! Having these Cats is a real inspiration for Cat designs as they are so entertaining to watch and one or both are in my studio sleeping on a bookshelf or chair.

Mysty ("Killer") sunning herself on the bookshelf

It turns out Missy Mew was not much of a hunter, not quite like Mysty who is the scourge of field Mice in the area.

Missy Mew has made attempts to hunt and once brought a live Mourning Dove into the house. We both rushed to investigate an ensuing racket after Missy zoomed in the house one morning and found a literal sea of feathers floating around the kitchen and dining room, a bird flitting all over the rooms and a clumsy Cat chasing it. Feathers flying all over, things knocked around! Finally Mr Wooly caught the shedding Dove and set it free outside where it took off. I couldn't believe a bird could lose so many feathers and still fly off! We were still finding feathers in the house a week later!

Except for batting a few fallen pencils and spools of Kreinik metallics around the studio floor, Missy is the perfect model, perfectly at ease and unpretentious of her good looks.....the striking black and white mask on her face, bright green eyes and pink nose.

I got the inspiration to put Missy to work since she was useless as a mouser and bug killer unlike Mysty who earns her keep patroling the yard for such pests. Afterall, in this household we are all expected to earn our keep and cat food is not free.

The model: The nimble and "innocent" Missy Mew sitting on my tall drafting chair in the studio

My first designs featuring Missy were a success! Stitchers wanted more designs featuring Missy's cute face. I thought, what a wonderful cat and such an inspiration!

Life is good and peaceful until last week - Missy suddenly decided to test some paints I had laid out in my studio on a high paint table. Naturally, it had to be the jar of red paint she stuck her white paws in!! Not the ultramarine blue that would have matched the carpet on the stairs but the screaming RED paint!!

The first sign of disaster discovered was a trail of little red paw prints snaking across the white tiled bathroom floor, the white shower stall, across the master bedroom floor, up and down the hall and up and down the stairs........

We panic thinking Missy must have hurt herself and I think that's an awful lot of blood for a small cat, maybe she killed something and then realized, holy cow, if she killed something it must have been BIG and I hated to imagine anything that BIG lurking in the house!!!

I ran down to the studio and screamed as I saw big puddles of bright red something splattered on my oak floors.....like a scene from a horror movie when I suddenly realize upon closer inspection, the "blood" is too brilliant a shade of red to be real........then it dawns on me.......these are puddles of my red acrylic paint!!!

So, here we are, two adults rushing around trying to capture the cat who is now panicking and running away from both of us stamping more virgin areas of floors with more red paw prints!! Finally I capture Missy and dunk her into the kitchen sink thinking she's going to die licking all that red acrylic paint from her paws and body, but realize it's a good thing she got into the non-toxic red acrylic and not the toxic Cadmium Red.....while Mr Wooly is busy running around with a bucket of ammonia and water, wiping up red acrylic paw prints following a meandering trail up and down and all around! Amazing where this cat has managed to go in such a short time with four red paws!

Naturally after all this, I threw Missy out of the house after her bath to dry in the sunshine.....so the first thing Missy does with her now clean, wet body is to rush out and roll around in the muddy area under the Apple tree......

In the meantime, Mr Wooly and I "think" we've cleaned up all the red paw prints.....until later that same night I hear Mr Wooly exclaiming, "OH NO!!" from the second upstairs bathroom. I rush up and what do you know, the white toilet seat is covered with permanent bright red acrylic paw prints. All Mr Wooly and I can do is collapse on the floor laughing!

Missy Mew featured as the Cat in the Magic Hat

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Copyright ©1998 Lula Chang --- E-mail contact: mail@woolydream.com --- All rights reserved. No part of this web site may be used or reproduced in any form whatsoever without written permission.