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Why Don’t You Leave Them As They Are?

This question has come up again and again. “Don’t paint the cat, it’s cute as is!” While it’s understandable, it’s also a bit frustrating, but perhaps if the website isn’t explaining it well enough, I should just go ahead and answer it.

My first thought is, sometimes you just have to let go. Growing up in NYC, I watched the city go through a lot of changes. After awhile I had to tell myself not to let my heart break every time one of my favorite diners changed a little bit; some new upholstery here, a chandelier unhinged, a neon sign gone dim. Chin up because change is inevitable. And it’s not always bad.

These cats are precious the way they are, I completely agree. That is why I was attracted to them in the first place, and that is why the ones I’ve had the longest I haven’t got the heart to paint over.

But painting them teal is why they gained so much attention. It gives the kitties a new lease on life. If I just put them up on the Internet unpainted, you might think you’d pay $25 plus shipping, but in reality, you wouldn’t. No one would. That is exactly why they’re staring up at us from the shelves of the Salvation Army, with those precious porcelain eyes, covered in dust and grime, and layers of stickers from yard sales gone by.

And I think that is the very reason why the Teal Cat Project resonates with cat lovers so well. “Why do we paint the cats?” Well, why do we rescue cats? We see their real life eyes staring back at us from cages and we think, how can anyone not love this cat? And so I understand the question. But I also hope you’ll understand the answer!

And on a practical note: I do check out the value of each ceramic cat. We explicitly ask that you do not send us cats over $5 in value. If I find one that would be more worth more not painted, I will not paint it, I can promise you that! But it really just hasn’t happened yet.

And finally, if there truly is a cat that we happen to post somewhere, that you would like unpainted, feel free to request it for the price of a painted teal cat. I have absolutely no problem with that, and honestly it would save me a lot of time! But otherwise, after I’ve spent hours in a hot garage, cleaning the kitties with love, sanding them, priming, painting and shining, I hope I don’t have to hear “Leave it as is!” If everyone left everything as is right now, nothing would get ever get better. So here’s to making things better!

Comments
4 Responses to “Why Don’t You Leave Them As They Are?”
  1. Diane says:

    I TOTALLY get it but perhaps you should not pose the question whether you should paint specific cats or not.
    You got opinions, which you asked for, & then became quite defensive.
    In the future please just paint the cats. It wouldn’t make any sense to call it the Teal Cat Project any other way.

    • IsaChandra says:

      Hi Diane!
      Yes, in one instance there was a misunderstanding. I was basically asking if people thought specific cats on eBay would make good teal cats, not if I should leave them as is. There’s a distinction there! But I wrote this post because I get a lot of comments about leaving them unpainted, solicited or not, so I thought that it would be convenient to have this answer written up for the future.

  2. Rachael says:

    Thanks for being so awesome! You’re the best!

  3. HereKitty1313 says:

    I get it, support it, and will start spreading the word about Teal Cat!!! :)

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