The Cat in the… Holiday Newsletter Coat

DEC 26, 2015 updated Jun 2, 2021

Lucy the cat is helping to spearhead this year’s hot festive fashion trend – holiday season and year-end Christmas newsletters that can also be worn as clothes.

She is doing so by modelling the first such “wearable newsletter” custom-made for a cat, while her proud owner wears a matching floor-length robe or “snugzy” printed from the same newsletter.

Holiday season newsletters that deliver a year-end update of family news have entered a new era of invention thanks to fabric-printing technology that makes it possible to turn them into garments.

A family of clowns from Minnesota is credited with inventing the world’s first wearable newsletter – a giant garment big enough to fit all four family members, which the Chalmers family of Rochester, Minnesota, is climbing into this festive season in a bid to pioneer a new form of year-end newsletter.

Lucy the Siamese/Calico mix from Raleigh, North Carolina, is the first known cat to follow their example. She has done so with help from her owner Joe Wright, 27, who works for Spoonflower, where both he and the clown family used to print their newsletters as fabric. He reached out to local seamstress and Spoonflower alum, Teri Stern, to turn the fabric into clothing.

Wright had Stern create a matching garment for himself from fabric printed with the same newsletter. It is a floor-length robe or “snugzy” – that looks like something that might have been worn by Moses in the Bible or even made from fabric printed with the Dead Sea Scrolls.

“Dressing in clothes that match Lucy’s feels stylish”, says Wright, who is a customer service employee at Spoonflower, as well as an artist, musician and habitual writer of year-end newsletters. “I think we look good together.”    

End-of-year newsletters are a tradition in Wright’s family.  “We all send them to each other, as well as to friends we haven’t seen over the past year. But you have to try something if you want your newsletter to stand out.”

Indeed, he has also used Spoonflower to print this year’s newsletter not just fabric made into clothes but also on both wrapping paper and a tea-towel for use in the kitchen. 

Highlights of Joe’s year in 2015 have included touring with a rock band, starting a record label with some friends and living in artist’s co-op in Raleigh.

Lucy’s full name is Lucy Earthchild. Joe rescued her from a gutter when she was week old, just over two years ago. “I hated cats until then but I fell in love with her. I live with seven other people, who all swear she’s the nicest cat they've ever met… because she really is.”

Lucy sometimes behaves more like a dog than a cat, says Wright. “She runs to the door when I get home from work and meows for attention and petting. She sleeps every night on my belly or at my feet.”

Could Lucy become the first feline supermodel? “That’s not the aim”, says Wright. “But she likes wearing her snugzy, since she spends a lot of time being carried around in my arms like a baby, and I think it makes her feel cozy.”




See pictures of Lucy and Joe wearing their newsletters

See pictures of clown family in world’s first wearable newsletter

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