Location: Long Island, New York
It's quite paw-sible that these two Burmese cuties on the left (officially known as The Choco-Lettes) are the luckiest two cats on the planet. Why? Because their humans have crafted one of the most incredible feats of feline ar-cat-ecture in the home they share in Long Island.
Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: My name is S.T.A.R. which is an acronym for Susy's Things Altered and Recycled. I'm a mixed media recycling assemblage artist living on Long Island, New York with my partner Lou and our two sweet Burmese cats, "The Choco-Lettes"
Our house has always been decorated in an unconventional colorful funhouse style, with my artwork strewn about, however we recently took a detour into a personal cat adventure of building catwalks for our furry companions who probably think they hit the Disney (Cat)World jackpot. At this point in time there are over one hundred and forty feet of sky highway for these felines to clown around on, five nests to relax in, a hanging bridge to fish for humans and who knows what else the future might bring.
Being that I'm an artist who believes in taking discarded treasures and transforming them into something fun and new, all of the catwalks constructed remain in line with that philosophy. With the use of salvaged wood and other found items the additional needed purchases were very minimal and the project was financially extremely reasonable.
Our house is relatively small, and comparable to apartment-style living with the exception of having the luxury of more privacy, including a wonderful backyard space to enjoy. Since we are limited with space, building these skywalks gives the cats their own level to enjoy without obstructing the flow of the basic living area.
People who visit us are usually a bit shell shocked when they first walk in and need to adjust to all the unexpected color. They either love it or not, but one thing is for sure…Our house is one they don't soon forget.
Describe your home's style in 5 words or less: A Colorful Funhouse
What is your favorite room and why? No room in particular, but if I had to pick one it probably would be the kitchen because of the happy yellow glow it exudes. Even on rainy days the school bus yellow hue is enough to keep you smiling.
How long have you lived here? About 19 years
If you could magically change something about your home, what would it be? Would move our house to the beach on a tropical island.
What's the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? Although I'm constantly finding great things to bring home to transform, like signs and mannequins, which are favorites of mine, this will probably sound very ordinary and uninteresting. The last thing I have to confess in purchasing would be just plain and simple paint. One can never have enough of that with the projects I tackle.
Which fictional character would be most at home in your place? There are actually a bunch of characters that I can think of. Pretty much anyone out of the cartoon or comic book world would probably feel right at home at our place. However I do believe "Felix the Cat" would be the choice. Felix was pretty much our lucky icon who was prevalent in the purchase of this home. Even the key to our house had a Felix the Cat key chain attached when it was handed over to us.
Any advice for creating a home you love? Garage and yard sales are a big hobby and inspiration of mine. There are just so many wonderful unique and affordable things that one comes across. Decorating with found things and throwing in a bit of your personal touch is my recipe. Recycling has always appealed me. After all, aren't the best things in life free? The bottom line is that there is no limit to imagination. Just toss out the rules of the conventional and go for whatever makes you smile. After all, at the end of the day you are the one that lives with it all and your place should always make you happy (including your cats).