Crafting with Cat Hair
Kaori Tsutaya (translated by Amy Hirschman)
Quirk Books, 2011
In a world where craft books abound, and people are making things out of anything and everything, this book still came as a delightful surprise. When I saw the title, I laughed out loud and knew it had to be explored. Crafting with Cat Hair is bright, colorful, entertaining, and has some really neat crafting ideas. All of which use, you guessed it: cat hair provided by your own purring felines. Tsutaya has very carefully outlined the appropriate ways to collect and store the fur without injuring your cats (or you!), and even the less-crafty will quickly realize they can do this!
There are several projects in the book, designed to familiarize crafters with the ideas and techniques behind the process, so they can continue to experiment and create cat hair crafts as their imagination and skill allow. Each project is broken down by tools and materials needed (including the cat hair), then well-photographed instructions lead crafters through the steps to finished product. While the techniques used are not necessarily 'common' (I'm a crafter, from a family of crafters, but have never even heard of a felting needle before), they are explained clearly, and between the written instructions and the photographs, the 'foreignness' is not overwhelming. After reading through the projects in Crafting with Cat Hair (my personal favorite being the finger puppet shown on the cover), I'm now more than ready to begin doing a little crafting of my own! I just need to convince my cats to cooperate and collect a stockpile of soft fluffy cat hair - and I may use the fur my bunny sheds also, for experimenting.
I'd definitely recommend this as a gift for cat lovers, especially if they happen to also be crafty. Likewise, crafters up for a new challenge will enjoy the endeavor, I believe. Additionally, it's just a "fun to flip through" book with pictures of very cute cats.
Book provided by publisher for review.