Idiom:  Catch someone's eye

Picture of a woman at an outdoor cafe who is holding up her hand to try to get the waiter's attention. Caption: the woman tried to catch the waiter's eye.

Look at the picture above.  Does this situation seem familiar?  I bet this has has happened to all of us. You want to place your order, get the bill, or there’s something wrong with your meal and you cannot get your waiter’s attention… you cannot catch your waiter’s eye.


Idiom:  catch someone's eye

  • to get someone’s attention
  • to be attractive to someone

Note:  The past tense of catch is caught (not  catched)

Example sentences

—  I went shopping for a new coat, but nothing caught my eye.

—  All of the job applicant’s CV’s looked the same, but John’s work experience as a clown caught the director’s eye and he was selected for the interview.

—  Ethan tried to catch the beautiful woman’s eye but she looked straight ahead and pretended she didn’t see him.

—  When I was walking today something shiny caught my eye. Someone had dropped their wedding ring on the ground.

—  Usually I don't wear scarves but a beautiful silk one caught my eye on the sales table.

—  I was practically asleep on the bus but luckily a person waving in the street caught my eye and I didn't miss my stop.

—  A strange $55 charge on my credit card bill caught my eye and I found out my boyfriend had used it without my permission.

—  When we went shopping in the bazaar I could hardly focus because so many cool things caught my eye.


  • stand out (past tense:  stood out)
  • leap / jump out at someone
  • leap off the page
  • stick out like a sore thumb
  • stand out from the crowd

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