This is the second part of CraftFoxes' interview with "Crafting with Cat Hair" author Kaori Tsutaya. To see the first part, click here.
How tough is cat hair to work with?
It can be difficult depending on the texture of the cat hair. Cat hair isn't curly like wool and can be hard for the fibers to tangle together, making it very difficult to form into a solid sheet of felt. It also depends on the amount of cat hair you have. Cats don’t yield as much hair as sheeps do. Also, you can’t just go out to the store and buy a bunch of cat hair. This limits the size of the crafts you can make. (I have a lot of cat hair on hand so I can make my crafts as big as I please, but not everyone has that large an amount they can work with.)
I have used dog hair before. In the Japanese version of “Crafting with Cat Hair” and its sequel, there are instructions in each book for dog hair crafts. However, dog hair is usually coarser than cat hair so that makes it difficult to turn into felt. There are softer, finer types of dog hair; those are better suited for these types of projects.
Do you sell your cat hair crafts?
I don’t really sell my cat-hair crafts. The ultimate goal of making cat hair felt is not really to make a product. The goal is for the owner to spend time brushing their own cat. Brushing reduces the number of times a cat spits up, and it massages the cat’s skin for better circulation. It's very important to maintaining a cat’s health. Rather than creating crafts for sale, I’d like it much better if cat owners would brush their pet cats and make cat-hair crafts for their enjoyment.
I may start making custom crafts for people. I’ll have cat owners send their cats’ hair to me, and using that material I’ll create their custom-ordered craft.