Kitty Kitsch

Kitty Kitsch

It's no secret, but if you don't know... I love cats. Especially my two little monsters, Stuart and Nadine, who appear in the occasional outfit of the day photo and drive my quest for lint-free fabrics.


Today's post isn't about what they wear, and it isn't about how to look like a cat. No, today I round up the kitschy cat print garments I'll probably never wear. 

These garments exemplify the kind of style I love to admire from afar but refrain from buying. All the cat-print shit that looks adorable but doesn't quite fit in my style story. Part of knowing your style is knowing when you like things but don't actually want to wear them. The sad truth is that I've built my wardrobe without much room for kitsch. I just wouldn't feel as grown up and put-together if I was walking around with embroidered cats on a denim button-up.

There's a couple pieces here that are borderline ok... Like, an elegant, cat-patterned silk blouse might be able to be incorporated into a more conservative wardrobe as long as the pattern is more artsy and less craftsy. Maybe more abstract and less literal. Even a leopard print could be a good compromise if I really wanted to let my cat love out without screaming crazy cat lady. It's a classic pattern that can double as a neutral in the right context.

But I digress.

I wanted to give all the ridiculous cat garments a place to shine, even though that place isn't my closet. This post is about indulging myself without spending money on things I don't really want. 

So join me as we take a jaunt through the wonderful world of Kitty Kitsch.

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Let's just get this one out of the way because it is TOO silly. I don't understand the world of embroidered button-downs, but it is vast and vibrant. Who ever used to wear this? Who BOUGHT this? It even has rhinestones! It seems like a product of the style of embroidery, but the cats all have really funny faces, kind of cross-eyed. I appreciate the hell out of this shirt but WOULD NOT WEAR.

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OK, you could get away with wearing this and still seem respectable. There's an 80s elegance to it. I enjoy the asymmetry of the leopard lounging on one arm and how the spots become a fabric pattern there moreso than part of the cat. The monochrome scheme keeps it a little more palatable too, but as someone who is not a fan of brown in general, I would not wear this for that reason. 

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Here we have symmetrical savannah cats and some tropical feeling flowers rendered in full color on denim. I can't decide if this is more or less crazy than the bedazzled stripe kitty button-down above. Again though, who wore this in the first place? Like I definitely would have worn this when I was seven, sure, but what adult added this to their closet?? I don't even like this, but I wanted to include because it's so off-the-wall.

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This falls under the more wearable category of cat print tops. The color scheme is muted and the cats are interspersed between classic polka dots. In some theoretical world I might wear this print but probably not in this blouse because the cut just isn't my style. You could totally tuck this into some black pants and look sharp though.

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There are tons of ubiquitous H&M cat print garments on Poshmark, but this one was a little less common than the others. I like the colors of these kitties and the way each one has it's own stylized pattern too. I wouldn't wear this in dress form but maybe as a top? I don't know, I certainly am not drooling over it and it still doesn't really fit my aesthetic. But I appreciate how playful it is.

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I saved this for last because I can actually see it fitting in to my closet. Black and white keeps it minimal. The kitties are stylized and adorable, and the pattern is sort of reminiscent of African mud cloth, which I think is getting a bit of a nice spotlight lately especially with brands like Osei-Duro. What I like about this tee is that it's bold and vaguely geometric and does not veer as much into Modcloth-twee like other cat-print shit tends to do (see: H&M dress above). I like the boxy cut of the shirt too. Overall... would wear.



Well, thanks for humoring this little round-up of Kitty Kitsch. The exercise of rounding up and giving a place for things like this is helpful for me to stay resolute in my decision to only let the best clothes into my wardrobe.

Just because you think it's cute doesn't mean it has to be cute in YOUR closet. I once bought a weird cat print t-shirt from H&M where these two mirror-image cats had big rhinestones on their foreheads... then I returned it, because even though I loved the idea of it, even then, six years ago, I knew it wasn't really for me.

What garments do you love and appreciate but just know won't work with your style?

Let's be honest this post was an excuse to put up pictures of my cats.

Let's be honest this post was an excuse to put up pictures of my cats.