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Hello Kitty - From a Cat Coin Purse to Feline Fame

It was 1962 when Hello Kitty creator, Shintaro Tsuji was making money by designing and selling rubber sandals with flower designs painted on them. After a while it was discovered that he could sell more sandals by painting cute characters on them. Taking advantage of this new-found knowledge, he hired cartoonists to create cute characters for merchandise designed for gift-giving occasions such as birthdays, weddings and other special days.

It wasn’t until 1974 that cartoonist, Yuko Shimizu came up with a cute, anthropomorphic cat-like character designed around the Japanese Bobtail cat. Hello Kitty made her first appearance on a coin-purse. Sitting betwixt a goldfish and a milk bottle with no clue about how famous she would one day be.

From the days of having a place on a coin-purse, Hello Kitty can now be seen (and recognised) on a whole plethora of different merchandise from posters and keyrings to dolls and prams (and all else in between).

First appearing in the United States in 1976 she fast became a hugely popular household name. Known and loved by children of all ages and adults alike, Hello Kitty was a massive success and is now recognised by most people from all across the globe. Some say this is down to the clever marketing and others that it’s because of the simplistic and cute design of the world’s most famous feline. I, personally believe that the major success is down to a variety of different factors; success doesn’t come by accident nor without hard work and dedication.

Shintario decided to make Hello Kitty British as at the time of creation many foreign companies were extremely popular in Japan, with the United Kingdom being at the top of the list of trendy countries.

Shimizu gave Hello Kitty her name when she was reading Lewis Carrol’s famous book, Alice in Wonderland. In the book there’s a scene where Alice is playing with a cat that she has named ‘Kitty’ and thus the second part of the name was formed. The ‘Hello’ element came when Sanrio decided that he wanted to include his company’s motto, “Social Communication” in the characters name. At first, our beloved fur ball was to be named “Hi Kitty”, but it was later -thankfully- decided that her name should be “Hello Kitty” after settling on the word ‘hello’ for the greeting part.

No Mouth

A spokesman for Hello Kitty once said that Hello Kitty possesses no mouth because they wanted people to project their feelings into her and be happy or sad with the character. Another explanation was that she had no need for a mouth as Hello Kitty spoke from the heart. As cheesy as the last explanation is, it’s still my personal favourite.


It was in Spring of 2005 that leading jewellery company, Simmons’ Jewellery Co., announced a partnership with Hello Kitty’s owner, Sanrio. The line was called “Kimora Lee Simmons for Hello Kitty” and was launched exclusively for the department store company, Neiman Marcus and pieces of hand-made jewellery adorned with diamonds, gemstones, semi-precious stones, 18K gold, Sterling silver, enamel and ceramic were sold at Neiman Marcus’ stores for anywhere between $300 to $5000 (USD). In Fall of 2008 a further line was introduced when wristwatches were produced and sold under the name “Hello Kitty® by Simmons Jewelry Co." The collection was launched by Zales Corporation to further expand the maximum reach of the exclusive, must have time-pieces.


As evident, Hello Kitty is a hugely successful brand and over time our feline friend has become world-famous and now manufacture an abundance of quality merchandise known and much-loved by the general public of countries from all over the world. The collections primarily cater for adolescent girls but have gradually become more and more widely appealing for females of all ages (and even some males).

Take advantage of a fantastic offer with this much-loved company by using Namshi coupon codes from AraCoupon for discounted Hello Kitty products. The coupon code can be found easily and used by simply entering the code at checkout.

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1 comment

  • Danica
    7mo ago

    My friend is obsessed with Hello Kitty and her entire kitchen (microwave, toaster, curtains) are Hello Kitty versions but do you think it's too young-looking for a woman over 30?

    My friend is obsessed with Hello Kitty and her entire kitchen (microwave, toaster, curtains) are Hello Kitty versions but do you think it's too young-looking for a woman over 30?

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