Friday, June 14, 2013

Bessie's Dream House

     I decided yesterday that since I've been wanting to spruce up my living space lately, it's only fair if Big Bessie's living space gets some home improvement too! Sure, she shares my room, but I doubt she cares about what I put on the walls. So I made her a little house to call her own, since she's an independent lady and all. 

Haha, look at the treat in there. I was trying to get her to give it a try, but I think it still smelled like spray adhesive. Gotta give these things time.

     But you know how cats are -- they're picky. So I wasn't going to drop money on a cat mansion when there's always a chance she'd hate it. I wanted to make her a cozy little place where she'd feel secure if the other cats are picking on her (a real thing, trust me -- I'm not just being a crazy overprotective cat lady, one of the other cats really does pick on her. I'm not making myself sound any less crazy, am I?) or if she's trippin' on catnip and the demons from behind her eyeballs are coming to get her, but I decided to do it using only things I could find around the house. That way, if she hated it, I could throw it all out and pretend it never happened without feeling like I'd wasted money. 

     So I started with item number one on the list of Things Cats Dig, a cardboard box. Then I used some leftover batting and fleece to throw together a pad for the bottom. I folded the batting over double to give it a little more squish, then cut it to the size of the box.

     I didn't even bother sewing the pad up, partly because I only had enough of the scrap fleece to cover one side, partly because it's for the cat. She doesn't care. So I put it together with hot glue, like so. 

     Then I quickly drizzled a hot mess (literally) of glue all over the back and plopped it into the box. 

     Next I cut some holes into the box: a big square hole for the entrance (Big Bessie is an accurate name, so it had to be a pretty large opening), and two small circular holes on each side of the "roof" I planned to construct, so that she could look out through them and plot and scheme, as cats do. I used a big honkin' utility knife because no one was around to tell me "You're gonna hurt yourself with that!" I also cut the flaps on the short ends of the box into the shape I wanted the roof to be. You'll notice that this way, the longer sides don't meet up, and the top of the roof is open. I just grabbed another piece of cardboard and cut it to the size of the opening to remedy that.

You'll also notice I spray-painted the box white first. It went...poorly. The spray-paint couldn't hide enough of the boxes sins, like rough patches where tape had been pulled off. Skip the spray paint, save yourself the effort.
     Then all that was left was to decorate the kitty-house and hot glue the structure of the roof together.

     I chose to decorate mine by covering the sides in two different patterns of wrapping paper. Just unroll the paper, rest the side you want to cover on the paper, and trace around it, leaving an extra inch or so anywhere that you want the paper to wrap around and cover the edges (This part took me back to taking the SATs, with those questions where you had to figure out what a three-dimensional shape would look like unfolded into two dimensions. Good times!). Then use spray adhesive to smooth the paper onto the box. 

     Then I added some ribbon on the front edges to cover up where the paper didn't line up perfectly, a shell covered in aluminum foil to give it some beach house flair and sparkle, two plastic photo corner type dealies, and her name written in metallic purple. Obviously you could decorate according to your own taste and your cat's personality (reeeally not helping myself sound less like a crazy person here). For example, Big Bessie is a pretty princess type (sometimes I call her Princess Dumpster, for she is delicate and fancy like a princess, but shovels food in like she's filling a dumpster. I'm complimentary like that), so I went for pretty patterns, shiny accents, and a general Barbie's Dream House feel. But for Kaden, the troublemaker cat that is 100% true to the stereotypes set forth in Lady and the Tramp, I would use darker colors and put a skull and crossbones on the front instead of a seashell, so he could have a little scoundrel's cove to hang out in. Options! 

     And lest I leave you hanging, I'll end the suspense: she likes it now that it doesn't smell like glue anymore. I caught this snap of her sneaking in to check things out. 

No comments:

Post a Comment