Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Life of an Item with PoppySeedCats

Hey, I’m Poppy of Poppy Seed Cats, I live in the dull rainy UK and share my house with 3 cats that are my constant inspiration and keep me very busy cleaning dirty little paws. My shop has a mixture of wire and wool sculptures based mainly on the cat form (a few extra animals like to sneak in every now and again). My wire sculptures are my favourite and today I will be showing you the process of my latest addition to my wire range.

Unfortunately due to living in a one bed roomed house my studio is my sofa in the living room and quite often my boyfriend will come home from work to find me under a pile of wire or wool trying to find the TV remote.

My inspiration for the wire cats comes from just watching my own cats move around the house and playing with each other, the feline body is an amazing and sleek machine which has inspired me all my life. My sculpting process used to start with a quick sketch up of the position I wanted the cat to be in and then move onto a scale drawing so I could get all the dimensions exact but now I can just jump straight in with the sculpting and I know the feline form by heart, I do miss the sketching process at times but it is now unnecessary and very time consuming.

The life of my tiny wire kitties starts at the tail and I work down with the wire creating the limbs as I go until I have created a skeleton out of one piece of wire. The next step is to bulk out the frame until it doesn’t look so anorexic, after this is done the head is created separate from the body. Usually at the stage while I’m occupied with the head one of my cats (usually Kiwi) steals the body and I have to swiftly rescue it before it resembles a pile of unsalvageable wire.

I create the head by wrapping the wire evenly around its self similar to making a snowball , when it’s the right size I create the ears using a single piece of wire bent with pliers to create a definite point. The head then gets attached to the body and the finished piece is gently pressed into its final shape before photographing it to be listed in my shop.

I usually take about 20 pictures in my homemade light box which lives on a shelf in my living room just out of reach of naughty kitties since the first one I made lasted less than an hour before someone decided to run through the tissue paper and then sat inside it attacking anything that was brave enough to try and walk by. After the pictures are complete I upload them to Photoshop to fiddle with lighting levels and crop and resize ready for listing.

And that is the life of one of my tiny wire kitties, I can usually have one of these made, photographed and listed in about 1 ½ hours. The finished kitties then live on a high shelf waiting to be rehomed while dodging the paws of death.


  1. Great post. I liked seeing the process of how the cats get made.

  2. So darling. I'm glad you showed your process and the light box - very interesting and nice visual layout to describe what you do. I bet you have some tough fingers!

    I love your work!

  3. Awesome article, well done! I love your little wire kitties. And I love the mischief the real kitties get into, I have two very playful cats.