This article originally appeared on VICE Indonesia.
We could all use a dose of cuteness amidst all the worrying news out in the world today. Thankfully, 33-year-old Indonesian Fani Nuryanto, a self-taught tailor who only designs clothing for fashionable felines, has got that covered.
Nuryanto showcases his designs on his Instagram account, which also serves as an online shop. Although he initially started the account as a hobby, it turned out the demand for cat couture was higher than he thought. One of his videos shows two cats dressed up in school uniforms being given lunch money before they head off to ‘school.’
He was first inspired to create his own designs after seeing videos of cats wearing superhero costumes.
“I thought it would be cute if I made something really Indonesian, hence the red and white primary school uniform,” Nuryanto told VICE, referring to his first and most popular design.
Nuryanto didn’t become a cat person until about four years ago, when a stray cat took refuge in his motorcycle helmet shop in Bandung, Indonesia’s second-largest city. He decided to name the feline Kokom and give her and many others a good home.
“These kittens keep me and my wife entertained,” said Nuryanto. “Kokom is my favourite because she doesn’t resist when I dress her up.”
Nuryanto never had any formal training as a tailor. Using YouTube videos as a guide, he learned to hand-stitch various types of clothing for cats. Due to increasing demand for his designs, he has now moved on to a sewing machine.
Nuryanto goes the extra mile when designing a look for a feline, also creating hats, shoes, necklaces, and fanny packs. Because cats are so small, these require extra care and attention to create. A complex custom order can take Nuryanto up to three days to complete.
“I’ve gotten requests for traditional costumes from different parts of Indonesia. And costumes representing the profession of the cats’ owners, like police officers and nurses,” Nuryanto told VICE. He has designed outfits for cats all over Indonesia and as far away as Iraq and Germany.
However, Nuryanto warned that his designs are not meant to be worn for extended periods of time.
“I don’t think the cats should be wearing these outfits for too long. Just long enough to snap a few photos,” he said, adding that he’s also working on creating clothing that are more comfortable.