Open letter: to clothes retailers from a three-year-old cat-lover

Dear High street clothes retailers,

I have been a lifelong loyal customer of yours. Throughout my three-year clothes-wearing career, I’ve always enjoyed having something absorbent on my arms and legs, and indeed midriff, that I can grind mud into, use to mop up spilt yoghurt or eject bodily fluids on to willy nilly. But recently, it has come to my attention that, in addition to being useful dirt magnets, my clothes can actually have pictures on them. Recognisable pictures drawn by actual designers, not just the ones I scrawl on there if I can get hold of the Sharpies.


So I write with a request.

Please can I have a cat. A cat picture on a top.

Or a T-shirt. In fact, I’m not fussy about the item of clothing, but the picture must be of a size to be a recognisable cat, like the ones we get in the garden that will occasionally submit to being lightly stroked and offered a breadstick to eat.

I should of course mention that I have long been impressed by the number of buses, cars and diggers you have provided for me to choose to wear. One might even call it an embarrassment of riches for the vehicle lovers amongst us. I feel the same about your excellent offering of superheroes and, of course, the spiky-toothed dinosaur. I’d like to give a highly-commended award to the person who managed to reach the holy grail of a dinosaur, on wheels, dressed as a superhero for these fine pyjamas.

However, my love of diggers has waned in recent weeks (though as an aside, I’ve never been able to get a T-shirt with my other favourite noisy, wheeled machine: the hoover, on it), and I find my thoughts turn regularly to the cat. A soft, furry cat. I really like cats. Did I mention that they are soft? And furry? And you can stroke them? They really are very nice.

I know I’m supposed to like the pointy-toothed dinosaurs, but I actually find them a little bit terrifying. Sometimes I worry that they may come alive and bite me. Or eat my cat. I have been known to hide a particularly frightening dinosaur T-shirt in another room. Despite assurances that it is just a picture, my motto remains, ‘You can’t be too careful’.

I have been known to hide a particularly frightening dinosaur T-shirt in another room. Despite assurances that it is just a picture, my motto remains, ‘You can’t be too careful’.

Please can I have a cat. It doesn’t need to have a weapon or sunglasses or the word cool on it, though if that’s what it takes I suppose I could live with it. Just a cat, like I can often get a monkey or a crocodile or a whale. Or even a fox.

I know it can be done as I’ve seen a lot of dresses with them on. Also, I note that cats can sometimes be worn in conjunction with frills, ruffles, lace, ruching and capped sleeves. However, I (and my peers) find a well-made top that covers my chest and shoulders worn with leggings, trousers or shorts very convenient and comfortable for the many and varied tasks I need to undertake in a day. I’d happily accessorise the existing items I have with some brilliant cat themed tops from your excellent outlets.

I understand the many pressures on the high street today, I know there are targets to be met and spiralling rents and the looming spectre of internet shopping. But I am a representative of some of your most reliable customers - the ones who are out in the day, going to shops, finding themselves on the high street desperately needing a change of clothes after the two spares have mysteriously been soiled in only half an hour. The ones who grow out of things every two weeks, and can’t always wait for an internet delivery.

Please can I have a lovely soft, furry, cat that I can find in your shop and pester my parent for? Please? I’m pretty good at pestering, and have been working on my technique. I start here with the letter, but without resorting to threats, I’ll just mention that I’m not afraid to stand in your shop whinging and whining, with the possibility of an escalation to a full-blown lie on the floor sobbing and kicking tantrum for it.

I look forward to hearing from you.

With all best wishes
Three year old, London