Aby-a-Day – 23 February: When the drapes match the rug (Fashion Friday)

Do you remember that scene in Garden State where Zach Braff’s character inadvertently wears a shirt that matches the wallpaper?

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Well, Logan does. At least, he understands that feeling.

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I tried Jacoby’s red and white Christmas hoodie on Logan…while forgetting that our bedspread has a similar pattern and colour scheme. Apparently, Logan remembered.

Aby-a-Day – 9 February: Logan’s forced fashion statement (Fashion Friday)

Logan is one of only 55 Singapuras registered in Sweden (and less than 60 in all of Scandinavia). Being such a new and unusual breed, the gene pool is understandably small. So, he won’t be getting neutered for a while.

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As you know, living with an unneutered male cat can be…problematic. Fortunately, Logan’s father, Hollywood de la Symphoriane, doesn’t spray, and neither does Logan, at least, not yet. But he does sometimes pee in places around the house. He seems to pee mainly in odd corners of the house, and our bed (so we have to keep that door closed)…and one time on Björn’s desk. So, when we can’t watch him, he wears one of his stylish stud pants.

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The easiest ones to find are Perfect Solution dog diapers. They come in only one colour, but it’s a nice turquoise, and Logan’s colour is blue, so they aren’t bad. Not terribly expensive, either. However, they are made for dogs, but they seem to work well.

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A brand I want to try, but haven’t been able to find yet, are Hurtta Fellow pants. These are made in Finland, and rather expensive. But they seem to be very well made. But again…designed for dogs. And they only come in black.

The best diapers I have found so far, however, are Barkertime cat diapers.

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They are wonderfully made, and designed for cats for a change!

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And they come in lots of colours and patterns.

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But they are a bit expensive. And I have to get them shipped from the States.

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However, you can save a bit of money if you let them pick and send you random leftover colours and patterns.

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And we got pretty lucky with the random colours, I must say. A festive, Christmassy red and white flannel pair, a very attractive dark blue flower print, and this snazzy, colour-coordinated cream, olive and chocolate plaid number.

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Of course, Logan doesn’t care how fabulously stylish he is in his stud pants.

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Logan doesn’t like them, but he actually really walks well in them once he gets used to them.

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His biggest problem with his diapers is that he can’t groom himself. He is a spectacularly fastidious young cat and grooming himself is his favourite pasttime.

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There is also the solution my friend Stephanie uses on her breeding Selkirk Rex, Teddy: Baby diapers with a tail hole cut in them. I haven’t tried this yet.

Aby-a-Day – 2 February: Who wore it better? Mistletoe edition (Friday Fashion Flashback)

I know Christmas (or Jul, as it’s called in Sweden) has been done and gone for over a month, but I couldn’t resist this comparison. Remember the first time Jacoby wore his mistletoe hat? He wore it like a pro. And later on?

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Yeah, he was still wearing it like a pro.

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Even as late as our first Christmas in Sweden…

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…Jake was still rocking that mistletoe hat like a boss.

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But the first time Logan donned the famed mistletoe hat?

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Yeah…not so much with the rocking and the bossing.

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Although, to be fair…Jake had his moments with the hat, too.

Aby-a-Day – 26 January: Wardrobe Rebel (Fashion Friday)

As you know, Jacoby has absolutely no problem with wearing clothing…especially if it’s his winter coat and there is snow on the ground!

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Logan also has no problem wearing a coat outside when it’s cold.

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Both he and Jake have figured out that going outside is fun, but being cold isn’t. Coats make outside not so cold so they can have that fun in winter.

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Alfred, however…it finally snowed enough to let the kittens experience their first snow, so I took Logan and Freddy out with Jake. Freddy did not like wearing his coat. He started taking it off the minute we got outside. It was Gun-Hee’s old coat</<>, and it fit him well, but he would have none of it.

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He got out of it with lightning speed.

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And then he proceeded to explore this strange white stuff that covered the outside.

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It was almost as though he was saying, “Screw you, I’m Swedish! I don’t need no stinkin’ coat!”

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Of course, Jake is Canadian and lived in New England for most of his life, and Logan is, of course, Swedish, too…and both of them appreciate their coats.

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Jake, especially. He seems a bit bemused that Freddy would shuck his coat so quickly to frolic naked in the snow.

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And frolic he did. He had a blast out there!

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Still, I would feel better if he could keep a coat on. Maybe I just need to try a different style.

Aby-a-Day – 20 May: The iconic Lisa Larson cat (Fashion Friday)

I’ve posted before about the iconic Lisa Larson cats.

Lisa Larson started working at the legendary Gustavsbergs Pottery in 1953. Her mid-century modern design manifested in more ways than just cats, but for some reason it’s her felines that are all over the internet (probably because that’s what the internet is for – cats).

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As a wedding gift, Björn gave me this modern cat figure designed by Lisa Larson. He picked this one because, well, “it looks like an Aby.” Can’t argue with that!

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But my love of Lisa Larson cats goes way back to the first time I saw one in 2000. I had gone on my first trip to Europe, to Amsterdam with people from work, and while they went to a conference, I spent a few days in Holland before skipping off to meet my old penpal Björn and his girlfriend in Sweden.

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I flew in and out of Göteborg, and one of the first places he took me was an antiques shop, where I saw this big kitty! And he is big, too – look at him compared with my hand! He was designed in 1957 for the “Stora Zoo” collection, and at the time he was pretty expensive (I think I paid around $100 USD for him)…and it turns out that he was a pretty savvy purchase!

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In fact, in this photo of me with Björn (the first ever taken of the two of us together), you can see my Stora Katt in the bag I’m holding.

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On that same trip, I picked up three small cats from the “Lilla Zoo” collection, circa 1955. I found them at various thrift shops and flea markets that Björn took me to.

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One of them had an accident when he fell through a hole in the paper bag and crashed to the cement floor. He shattered to bits…but Björn insisted that we pick up all the pieces, and that night he sat down at the table with some glue and did what all the King’s horses and all the King’s men couldn’t do…he put my cat back together again!

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Can you believe he did that?

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I was amazed. I hadn’t actually been carrying him when he dropped (Björn’s girlfriend was), and I was sad that he had broken but there wasn’t much to be done…or so I thought. I was absolutely blown away that he was able to repair the cat so well.

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I think that was when I started my crush on him forreals…

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A year or two later, Björn sent me this tall Lilla Zoo cat because he looked like Patrick

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He has stripes down his back!

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One of my more odd Lisa Larson cats is this Necono Digital Camera! The camera’s website even explains: “Lisa Larson is a world’s famous Swedish ceramist. She lives in the nature with her husband who is also an artist, and continues to produce ceramics even in her 70s. Before Japan learned about the Scandinavian ‘kawaii,’ she had always been teaching us how charming Scandinavian designs were.”

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Similar to how the Japanese appropriated Finland’s Moomins, Japan has embraced Lisa Larson’s cats, especially the cartoonish version of the Stora Katt called “Mikey.”

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Mikey is the star of this camera and matching bag.

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It’s a fun little remote digital camera. Not really sure why a digital camera needed to be cat-shaped, but…

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…Oh, right. Because Japan.

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Another modern usage of Lisa Larson cats is in the form of the typically Scandinavian pedestrian reflector. Born of a combination of the combined Nordic passions for creative design, the love of the outdoors, and safety, the pedestrian reflector is a extremely common thing, seen dangling from the snowsuits of toddlers to the fancy handbags of their grandmothers.

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So of course there are Lisa Larson cat reflectors!

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Finally, I have this Japanese keychain/hanging charm…another gift from Björn, of course…I guess he and these cats will always be intertwined in my memory.

Aby-a-Day – 22 April: Something Old (Fashion Friday)

Björn and I got married on Monday, as I mentioned earlier.

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Much to our delight, a bunch of our friends came to wish us well, including Meg, Molly, Barb, Kelli and Donna. We were so amazed and grateful that they came to witness our marriage.

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And they all gave us lovely gifts, apart from their presence. Molly gave us this “something old” that she found in an antique shop. Isn’t it wonderful!? It’s clearly meant to be an Aby, which in itself is amazing, but the detail and the workmanship in this small stained glass is wonderful.

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He has wire whiskers, and three-dimentional, marble-like cat eyes that are just entrancing.

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We love it so much…thank you, Molly!

Aby-a-Day – 15 April: Tag, you’re it! (Fashion Friday)

Last week, I posted about Angel’s new leash. I also got everyone new collars, and Jacoby and Angel also got new tags!

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I’m working on getting them silver tags, made by the same person who made them before, but she hasn’t been able to do it yet, so I had these made by Jen at K9 Stamp Art.

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These are brass, and the lettering is done in colour, which I think is a nice touch. They have crystals embedded instead of gemstones.

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I also got Pyret a collar, BlanketID tag, and a nametag. Pyret’s colour is yellow (Angel’s is purple and Jacoby’s is green), and she’s never worn a collar before, but I thought it would be nice for her to fit in with the Abys.

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All the tags have our new Swedish address on the backs, too…just in case someone sneaks out the door.