I am often faced with this same dilemma, No, I'm not a hoarder :). I foster kittens for a local animal rescue group and they always need names before they are placed up for adoption. Sometimes I choose a name based on appearance (Cole for a black cat, Pom Pom for my big fluffy calico) and sometimes it is personality (Monkey for a climber). Given time, I usually start calling them something ridiculous. My kitty, whose given name is Bowie (because of his eyeliner) is now affectionately referred to as Beyozer. The kitten in this photo was named Mr. Weasley because he's a ginger.
Our neighbour has an orange tabby cat that they named Jaffa. It suits the cats colour without being too obvious. One of my friends has a sense of humour when it comes to picking names. They called their cats Rat and Mouse.
Although a good way to name a cat is based on colour or personality, if you are having real trouble deciding, I find choosing at random effective. Close your eyes, don't think, and just let a word or name roll off your tongue. If you like it, keep it. Also try going through the alphabet. What letter does your cat seem to fit best?
You said you called your last cat Putty Cat. Why not use the name cat in a foreign language?
The best cat name is always something that means something to you. It could be something as simple as "I like the name George because it's cute" or it could be complex as in "I'm going to name him George because i like Warner Brother Cartoons and remember that cartoon guy that said 'I will love him and squeeze him and called him George' ". The reason doesn't matter, the name doesn't even matter, what matters is how it makes you feel towards your pet, because really, the cat will never understand what the name means, but the cat will understand the love behind the name when it's called.
I don't think it really matters to the cat what you name it...I was once told that cats have three names. The name you give them, the nickname you come up with, and the name they give themselves, but be aware that they will ignore them all equally.
Naming a pet should be easy; after all, they're not going to be teased about it at school :)
For example, my son, when he was much younger, called his cat 'Umbrella.' He loved it and loved the name, so it stuck. While we agonise over naming a child, we should enjoy the opportunity to have a bit of fun naming our pets.
A name should be to do with what ever captures your heart in the animal, whether it be appearance, temperament or what they were doing when you first saw them. Both of our birds were named after their colours we have Veigar who is blue, white and black and named after a black and blue character in a computer game and a green, yellow and black bird that is named Emmie as she is sort of an emerald green colour.
Iím now in 60ís, but when I was little our parents gave us a ginger coloured cat & he was named Orlando, after the book, Orlando the Marmalade cat. Our daughter bought us a book, while she was in Whales for 2 or 3 days, a long time ago,
titled, Orlandís 25th Wedding Anniversary, as a gift to us, for our 25th Wedding Anniversary. Itís still on our bookshelf.
I just got my first kitten a month back. I named her Emmie, a take on my friend Emma's name. Cats tend to respond better to the 'ee' sound at the end of words (kitty, baby, etc.) so I added the 'ee' sound and got Emmie. It also fits her personality, she is a sweet, super-friendly, playful, adorable kitty, so I feel Emmie fits her!