Scarlett Cat

Kate Lightfoot aka Scarlett Cat creates quirky, flirty big-eyed girls inspired by current fashion, vintage tea parties, flowers, birds, 1960s sex kittens and a healthy imagination!

They're bright and playful, they're cards and prints and ACEOs, sometimes they're buttons and hair clips. I think I may be in love with them. Kate is pretty great too, as I learned from our recent interview.

And apparently she makes me want to rhyme.

Tell me about how you originally got into your craft.
I've been drawing since I could pick up a pencil. While my family watched TV, I'd be sitting at the kitchen table, head-down, sketching and colouring. I'd lose hours - it was just so relaxing.

It wasn't until I was 16 that I bought my first greeting card (and was shocked at the price!). Until then I'd made my own cards for every occasion.

I remember going overseas when I was 11 and taking my watercolour Derwents with me - I'd use them as 'make-up' when my mother wasn't looking. We're talking crimson lipstick and peacock blue eyeshadow all over an 11 year old's lids - it ain't pretty!

What is your favorite thing to do in the whole wide world?
I can't possibly pick just one, so here are three.

Drawing in a cafe while lingering over a coffee.
Sleeping on soft grass in the sunshine.
Discovering a new artist that I love.

What is your biggest challenge when it comes to running your shop?
Dividing my time between creating art and running a business. I'll be busily promoting my shop and fulfilling orders, then realise it's been months since I've picked up my pencils or a paintbrush. If only I could jam an extra 10 hours into each day!

What item in your shop would you most like to receive as a gift if someone were shopping for you?
While I love all my girls, they're created for sale, and I'm perfectly happy to send them off to all corners of the world. But after happily sending 'tea-bird' to a gallery, I ended up having to call them and ask them to put her aside for me!

I was continually drawn to her and just had to have her for myself. Strangely, I think it's the vintage doily under the teapot that I really love!

When you were a kid, what did you think you were going to be when you grew up?
I always wanted to be a cartoonist or a greeting card designer, but before the internet, these were really not practical occupations. So I ended up in advertising which was a good compromise - it was a relatively secure income yet was still creative.

Etsy provided a relatively risk-free way of seeing if my work would sell. So now I work as a writer during the day in the ad agency and as an artist and business owner at night from home.

What other shops out there do you love?
How long do you have?! I just adore shopping on Etsy, so my favourites list goes on for about 80 pages

But I really, really love:

Soft, delicate, feminine art from My Charlie Girl
Incredible silver jewelery from Missy Industry
Weird and interesting art from Hisss
Funky, creative pillows from Brokesy
Sweet art from Dilka Bear
Amazing 3D artworks from Roadside
Gorgeous vintage style jewelery from Schmutzerland
Whimsical artworks from Marmee Craft
Incredible illustration jewellery from Tilly Bloom
Awesome, abstract art from Michelle Moode

What does your future hold?
My goal for my art has always been to make a decent income from it and build a good reputation in the art world. I'm slowly but surely working my way up the ladder and I'd like to think I'll continue doing this over the next 10, 20, 30, 40 years!

I was recently approached by a gallery in LA to start exhibiting some work over there, so I'm hoping to eventually have a solo show and build up my name overseas.

Visit Scarlett at Scarlett Cat or pop by her blog She also sells shoes (SHOES!) on Zazzle. Sigh.