Introducing Cat Coven, a small, independent brand from Brooklyn, NY! Kjersti Faret, the 25-year-old creatrix behind the brand, creates all of the designs and prints nearly everything herself. Being a one-woman-shop means she also does shipping, answers emails and takes on every other business task.
Her love for handmade and tactile art fuels Kjersti’s passion for creating products that are somewhat practical, which people can also use in their everyday lives. T-shirts, patches and pins are the majority of Cat Coven’s products, all with imagery inspired by Kjersti’s interests in witchcraft, fantasy, art history, cats and, of course, feminism. New items are constantly being introduced, like tote bags, mugs, talismans, and altar/tarot cloths for witchy folx.
Cat Coven offers designs on Bella & Canvas’s crew neck and slouchy t-shirts, which is a WRAP-certified brand (meaning that there are lawful, humane and ethical conditions for workers and that the product is eco-friendly).
The newest collection, released a few weeks ago, is called “Myths & Magick.” Designs feature a portrait of a Sphinx, a dragon breaking free, a circle of demons and intertwined dragons inspired by Nordic woodcuts.
“Myths & Magick” plays with the idea of fantastical beasts as holding up a mirror to our own humanity. Each creature in the collection is powerful, sometimes neither in a good or bad way, just like we as humans, contain multitudes. As someone with anxiety, Kjersti likes to create images of strong and steadfast creatures and hopes others can channel comfort and strength from these drawings.
The idea of imagery as a portal for strength really took shape with Cat Coven’s 2017 collection, “Enchanted Armor.” Kjersti created her own breastplate shirts inspired by actual pieces from the Metropoitan Museum of Art’s armor collection. Each piece began by feeling a connection with a certain armor’s structure or composition and then Kjersti created the theme and details from there. Each breastplate handles different subjects in which one may need to draw strength to face, such as “Rebirth” (pictured below), which holds symbols of mortality, a terrifying reality every living being must face.
The other half of the “Enchanted Armor” collection was about more abstract ideas of armor, seen in the “Vulnerability” design. Vulnerability is seen as weakness. Here, Kjersti explores the inherent strength of the seemingly fragile spider web. Humans easily destroy a web with a brush of their hand, but insects are trapped in their sticky threads. The spider itself is considered a fearsome predator, but it creates delicate and deadly webs. This specific design took its main inspiration from antique lace. The same dainty florals and swirls that decorate armor appear in lace patterns. What makes us weak can also make us strong. There is power in staying guarded, but there is also power in removing armor.
Kjersti is interested in witchcraft as a method of connecting deeper with one's self and world surrounding us. She has created a small selection of handmade one-of-a-kind altar/tarot cloths. Each one is reversible and lace has been hand sewn to the borders. One side is just solid fabric, the other side contains an image to meditate on.
She also created Talisman pocket necklaces. After designing multiple prototypes, Kjersti made a few variations. Each one is a unique pouch to hang around your neck on a sterling silver chain. Inside you can keep tiny treasures such as herbs for spell work, your familiar's whiskers, crystals or anything else you desire. For the one pictured below, a black cat sits on the front to guard your keepsakes. Beaded details have been added by hand. The front flap stays closed with a braided loop over a shimmery, silver button. Other talismans have different guardians on the front such as a raven, demon or sphinx.
Cat Coven also offers cotton and vegan leather patches, pins and other accessories for you to DIY your wardrobe.
You can find all of these things and more at catcovenshop.com.
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