This photograph of 27 knitted Black Cats is as amazing as it is unique. And sums up love and kindness. A fairytale.

There is no other photograph in the world like this one, I can guarantee.

Once upon a time a couple of weeks ago my sister in law, we’ll name her Moira for this happy little story, had finished all her weeding and sat twiddling her thumps. She was so bored with the world.

“Mirror, mirror on the wall. I’m so bored. I’ve done it all.” Chanted Moira.

But then to her surprise the mirror lit up and reflected back the gleaming, grinning face of Liz the Wicked Witch of the East (East Coast that is, Skegness to be precise).

“Oh, Mother dear! Don’t take on so.” Croaked Liz, the Wicked Witch of the East. I have a task that will fill your hours. I need 30 knitted lucky black cats or kittens for my 30 dear kiddywinkles that I have taught all year as special good luck end of term presents.”

“Ok.” Said Moira with a smirk.  She knew there was no chance of her knitting 30 in the short, allotted time. She’d be lucky to manage 3. So, she just banked on the fact that Liz the Wicked Witch of the East had a bad memory and would forget how many she needed.

“There’s just one more thing.” Cackled Liz the Wicked Witch of the East. “If those said 30 black woolley knitted, kits, cats, are not complete and ready for me to collect on the final stroke of midnight on the 27th July 2021 you will be cursed to have to entertain the Raving Robinson’s for lunch everyday for eternity. Tee, hee, hee.” Cackled Liz the Wicked Witch of the East.

“Oh no!” Screamed Moira, burying her face in her hands. “My worst nightmare in the world, ever. What can I do?”

“Just get on and knit 30 black woolley cats before the clock’s final stroke of midnight on the 27th July 2021.” Cackled Liz the Wicked Witch of the East rubbing her hands together before she disappeared from whence she came.

So, Moira had no choice and set to work 24/7 in her own special little sweatshop. Her gnarled and calloused arthritic fingers grasping the knitting needles in a rhythmic knit one pearl one sort-a rap which brought back memories of the Partyboys as the black wool magically turned into cats on her not so huge knitting needles.

Too terrified to eat more than a stale mouldy crust of bread and drink half a tumbler of rainwater, every 12 hours, Moira worked on tirelessly. From time to time, Liz the Wicked Witch of the East would appear unannounced as if from nowhere, to crack the whip, on the pretence of checking out the welfare of her dear Mommy.

As Moira progressed there was a government announcement that due to the project there was an international shortage of wool. And consumers were being rationed to two balls each. Naked sheep throughout the world stood behind trees ashamed of their nakedness and trying to hide their private parts.

As sweat or was it tears, dropped from the end of Moira’s nose she was rejoicing that she was close to finishing. But then she realised, cats need eyes and noses and collars. And for safety’s sake did she need to have them chipped and muted?

Moira kept checking her watch nervously as the Midnight Hour approached.  She just could not face a life of the Boring Raving Robinson’s for lunch every single day for eternity.

At the 11th hour Liz the Wicked Witch of the East appeared as if from nowhere, for a photoshoot for the Press release about the lucky, woolley, black cats, but unfortunately only 27 were complete.

Liz the Wicked Witch of the East produced wine and goodies to encourage Moira, on the final leg.

And so just as the clock finally struck 12 the woolley, black cat No.30 had his/her 2 eyes, nose and collar put in place.

Moira sighed with relief just as a brand new order came flooding in from China for a container load.

But she was already in her bed, exhaustedly sleeping for the next 40 days and 40 nights with her gnarled, arthritic fingers bathing in a solution of carbolic soap, paraffin and male tom cat pee.

Ok, so only part of that story was true. You decide which bit.

Moira a most devoted Mum and went beyond the call of duty and did take on the task of knitting 30 beautiful woolley black cats for her daughter to give one each to her class as an end of School Year gift. A woolley good luck black cat.

And that is what makes this photograph so unique. Those 27 lucky, woolley, black cats epitomise a mother’s love and dedication to her daughter. Other mothers give as much love and are as dedicated but I bet you cannot find anywhere in the world a photograph of a mother sitting behind 27 lucky, woolley, black cats she has knitted at short notice for her daughter.

I also bet Moira never says she’s looking for something to do again. After all she always has lots of weeding to do.

And let’s not forget the lovely Liz the Wicked Witch of the East. She’s the opposite of all those things “Wicked”, “Witch” and “of the East”. A loving daughter, a devoted mother herself and a dedicated teacher of 25 long years with a bit of paper to prove it. That is why she needed 30 black woolley lucky cats for each member of her class for the end of year. She is so generous if her mum could not do it she would have got them somewhere or something else.

Liz has such a loving and generous nature. I remember in her teen days (many, many, many years ago), she had a student type summer holiday job and out of her earnings bought me the best 60s compilation tape I have ever heard. How could she afford it? I still treasure it although playing it these days is a challenge! But it  just illustrates Liz’s kind, generous and thoughtful nature.

Black cats really are lucky, too, you know. I failed my driving test a number of times. I was taking it again and had to slow down because a black cat ran across my path in front of the car. I passed my test that time.


TOP 30 Most Popular Black Cat Names


  1. Luna
  2. Jack
  3. Stella
  4. Shadow
  5. Smokey
  6. Boo
  7. Olive
  8. Dexter
  9. Rocky
  10. Felix
  11. Ziggy
  12. Jax
  13. Sasha
  14. Sadie
  15. Izzy
  16. Roxy
  17. Midnight
  18. Bagheera
  19. Bandit
  20. Misty
  21. Cookie
  22. Merlin
  23. Jinx
  24. Mowgli
  25. Mocha
  26. Mickey
  27. Cosmo
  28. Ozzy
  29. Batman
  30. Stormy


REMEMBER: The most wasted of all days is one without laughter.

– Nicolas Chamfort


There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle. -Albert Einstein


Happiness is….having knitted 30 woolley black cats.



Love is…a beautiful woolley black cat.


A time to knit a beautiful woolley black cat…a time to be given a beautiful woolley black cat.


28th July

1540 King Henry VIII of England privately married his fifth wife, Catherine Howard.


1943 Furniture retailer IKEA opened its first store in Sweden.

2012 Bradley Wiggins, aged 32, became the first British cyclist to win the Tour de France. He finished with a winning margin of 3 minutes and 21 seconds.



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Reflections of a Top Hit Record

Queen’s iconic “Bohemian Rhapsody” video reached 1 billion views in 2019

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©2021 Phil M Robinson