Cat Woman Wednesday: A Far Cry From Crazy

I first became aware of today’s Cat Woman Wednesday, Brit Sonja Farrell, when I happened upon her blog post, “Debunking The ‘Crazy Cat Lady’ Stereotype.”  Talk about the perfect way to get my attention! Only later did I learn she’s also the founder of a company specializing in luxury cat collars called Cheshire and Wain. She was kind enough to gift one of her beautiful handmade holiday collars to Kip, and I must say he looks quite handsome in it (photos at end of post). 

Sonja and Percy

Sonja in her office with muse and model Percy


Should you care to treat that special cat in your life this holiday season, Sonja’s offering IHC readers Free Shipping through 12/25/13 to the US and Canada by using the code 52D90070 (order by 12/13/13 to guarantee delivery by Christmas!). 

Without further ado, I present to you a loud-and-proud cat lady who is anything but crazy!

Mr Percy Peter Wells

Mr Percy Peter Wells


Some things that potential boyfriends/husbands should know. My cat, Mr Percy Peter Wells to you, comes first. If you don’t like him you better learn to love him or at least become convincing enough at providing him love and attention when he asks for it. You must not have a problem with him sleeping at the end of the bed or even on my head. He likes to do that.

 Sonja Farrell and Percy

You must never say anything horrible to him. Your body language is communication enough without verbal confirmation. And yes, he does understand ‘human.” If you insist on calling yourself a ‘dog person’ you are creating a virtually impossible task for yourself at gaining my affections.

Percy will know if you are wrong for me and he will tell me. I’m afraid that if this turns out to be the case we may no longer see one another, as you will have failed an important test. You should know that cats have always been a big part of my life so it’s important for me to know for sure whether you like them or not.

me and percy

Someone loves his Mommy

I guess you’ve worked out by now I’m a pretty serious cat lady. But dare to call me crazy and you’ve got another thing coming!

I’ve always loved cats for their individual and complex personalities as well as for their almost mystical presence. I admire that you have to earn a cat’s love and affection, and then work hard to sustain it. They make such fantastic companions and are a joy and a comfort to have in the family.

Percy the model

Percy the poser


They do what they want, when they want – sometimes they will sigh and make you feel like you’ve deeply offended them. Other times they’ll destroy your sofa or bring you decapitated ‘presents.’ They know how to cheer you up when you’re feeling down, they don’t mind doubling as a furry hot water bottle when it’s cold outside. They’re fantastic manipulators but they know we’re on to them and accept that fact.

They’ve learned how to live in harmony with their ‘humans’ but haven’t lost their independence as a result. I like dogs too but I always think that if they could speak they would run around the park yelling “yeah yeah yeraaaahhhh yaaaa yeah yes yes yes yeah yea.

Cats would have a much wider vocabulary.

baby percy

Percy a a baby


I suppose my love for cats all started when I was about six. My first proper cat friend Hattie and I used to spend our time acting out scenes from The Lion King. It’s a good thing she was so tolerant during the hold-Simba-up-in-the-air-to-see-his-kingdom-scene or my good relationship with her might’ve been short-lived!

Hattie had a litter of six kittens, three sets of twins (after which she was fixed!). I think the fact that cats can have one litter from multiple cat flings is brilliant.


Hattie, my first proper cat friend


Just imagine the potential soap opera story lines if that was the case with humans too! We kept two of the kittens from Hattie’s litter – a big footed ginger cat called Cracker (or Big Daddy Ginge) and a tabby called Tommy.

Cracker and I became the best of friends and he didn’t mind playing The Lion King with me either. He’s 19 years old now and the only remaining kitty from the friends I grew up with. He’s blind in one eye and looks like a wise pirate – I’ll be absolutely devastated when he passes away.

old veteran cracker

Cracker (aka Big Daddy Ginge) at age 19


I got Percy early this year whilst working at an advertising agency in London. It was a great place to work but the hours were long and I was itching to get away and start something of my own. I was putting money aside until I came up with a viable business idea and shortly after acquiring Percy came the inspiration!

I was finding it hard to find high quality, mind fully designed cat products in the UK and was frustrated by the rubbish that was being made abroad – especially scratching posts which would fall apart in a matter of days. I wanted to start a company based on integrity and a true love and interest in cats.

Percy with his catnip drug haul

Percy with his catnip drug haul


I wasn’t interested in making a ton of money, I just wanted to give Percy nice things and make those things available to other cat owners that love their pets as much as I do. I wanted to give something back to our feline friends. I also wanted to design a luxe range of leather collars which would include a hidden breakaway buckle – a collection that was safe, stylish and made to last.

I set up Cheshire & Wain a few months ago and work from a small desk in my living room, designing new products, finding small-scale makers and suppliers, writing articles for my blog and taking multiple pictures of Percy being a little poser – seriously my phone is full of them! At the moment you’ll find the Cheshire & Wain luxury cat collar range on Each one is handmade in London and comes complete with suede lining and gold-plated falconry bell.

Traditional collection (left) and Christmas collars (r)

Traditional collection (left) and Christmas collars (r)


I’m in the process of designing lots of new products; a new collar line, organic catnip toys, lambskin beds and a scratching post that doesn’t resemble a pile of old carpet! So be sure to check back over the next few weeks/months.

I suppose I’m quite an optimistic person, I believe you can achieve whatever you want to achieve as long as you are passionate enough about succeeding. People’s reactions aren’t always positive when I tell them what I do. I have been called a ‘crazy cat lady’ more times than I care to count. But with my optimism comes a determination to build a successful small business, helping to re-define the modern cat lady as a far cry from ‘crazy.’

Chesire and Wain Cat collars

Kippie receives his parcel from England (love the packaging)


luxury cat collars

Kip modeling the Cheshire and Wain Christmas Collar (I think it goes very nicely with his coat don’t you?)


There were so many awesome photos of Percy here are a few more bonus extra shots! Enjoy!


Face off with neighbor's cat

Face-off with neighbor’s cat



Look at his lovely markings!

Percy relaxing

A very relaxed Percy

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  • Percy is a hearthrob! Great post and good to see you on the CB. I leave comments at the first dozen or so and so here I am 🙂

    • Thanks Layla! I’ll let Percy know. Thanks for taking the time to read the article

    • Tamar

      Hi Layla! I know, he is SOOOOO handsome, as are the collars! Thanks for dropping by 🙂 You are so good about leaving comments. It’s much appreciated!

  • This was a great post. We loved learning about Percy and his human and her business. The photos were outstanding, and Percy has some gorgeous markings. Our favorite photo was the one of him wearing the large paisley bow. We’ve asked Mom to check out the collars at Sonja’s shop site. Thank you so very much for sharing this info. Purrs and hugs, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Fiona, Lisbeth and Calista Jo

    • Dear Kitties, thanks so much and hope your Mom likes what she sees on the site. 🙂 Percy sends his love from across the pond.

  • mar

    Percy is a supermodel!

  • Great story and really nice stuff! Percy is quite handsome. Even though I’m a mancat, I can say that. I’ll make sure to share this on my FB page!

    • Tamar

      So glad you enjoyed! Percy is handsome! Thanks so very much for sharing on your FB page- MUCH appreciated!

  • jmuhj

    Kip DOES look wonderful in his new collar. Percy is also a gorgeous boy! And good on ya, Sonja, for having your priorities correct. They’re mine as well, minus the “liking dogs” part. I’ll grudgingly admit to thinking a few dogs of my acquaintance are all right, but that’s about it. It’s cats all the way with me. And crazy? What’s crazy about loving someone who loves you unconditionally, is much more beautiful than any human could ever dream of being, and purrs? That’s my story and I’m sticking to it 😉

    • Kip is a handsome chap! Thanks Jmuhj – glad you’re in agreement. SOME dogs in the long history of the world have been OK but yep cats are much better 😉

  • beautiful post, beautiful philosophy for a company! I wish you gobs of success!

    • 🙂 Thank you Connie!

  • Okay I might be in love. Percy is adorable, but he has excellent taste in humans.

  • Percy is adorable and I love your post. I found out that a smart man who really loves you will go out of his way to spoil your cat, thinking he is fooling you. It turns out he falls in love with the cat, too! Result: he is still here.

    • Tamar

      I think you are 100% correct! 😉

    • agreed! 🙂

  • Great post! Wickedly Wonderful Wild Cat Woman! Yes, of course Percy is handsome but I have to say that Cracker (aka Big Daddy Ginge) totally stole my heart…I have a thing for older men…oops, I mean cats! 😉

    • Tamar

      awwwwww Big Ginge is a sweet heart. I’m so glad you enjoyed it! Thanks xo

    • Papa Ginge will be so pleased! I always tell him he’s still got it but he’s grown shy in his old age. Glad you enjoyed the post – thanks for reading!

  • Jonathan Crompton

    They are nice Cat collars, we are going to start selling them on KittyKit

  • Jonathan Crompton

    We are also going to start selling Cat hampers