Elyse Moody & Milly

I adopted Milly in 2012, the year after I moved here from DC, during the Three Kings Day parade in Williamsburg. A friend from Georgia and I dropped by Muddy Paws pet shop for their adoption/David Bowie birthday party event – the posters showed Bowie fishing for cats, which was irresistible.


I agreed to adopt Milly (from North Brooklyn Cats), then found out she’d been returned by a previous adoptee, which made me even more determined to make her mine. (Apparently, she did not get along with the previous owner’s Chihuahua.) The online description of her said that she had been found in a box in the Bronx with five other kittens (her original name was “Six”) and was high energy and slightly frantic. That’s true, but she’s mellowed a lot over time and is much more of a snuggler now. She’s unusually tiny and delicate. I loved that her vet records described her as an “apricot calico.” She also goes by Mildred, Mill, and chicken. She has a passion for deli turkey and her scratching post. She has a chirp/meow unlike any cat’s I’ve ever known – she’s super impatient.


My best story of Milly involves a sofa and a painting of her that I own. Here’s an abridged version: I had an old teak midcentury sofa I bought on consignment, and posted it on Craigslist when I could afford a new one. One guy outdid all my other bids (there weren’t many) and even offered to throw in an original painting to sweeten the deal. I never expected to actually get a painting, but he really did deliver on it. It’s an oil painting of Milly reclining on a chaise, and it’s the best/weirdest thing I own.



Elyse Moody is a senior editor in the home department at Martha Stewart Living. Before that, she was an editor at O, the Oprah Magazine (where Milly modeled a cat tree for Oprah’s Favorite Things in October 2015) and at ELLE. She’s originally from Georgia, and has always been into home design and organizing. Elyse moved every year growing up – her parents built and decorated houses – so that’s something she loves, in addition to cooking and nesting in general.



Photographer based in Brooklyn, NY.

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