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Hello Kitty!

One of the most popular cartoon characters of all time, Hello Kitty has been an iconic part of pop culture for over than 30 years. But where did this adorable white kitten come from?

Hello Kitty

Hello Kitty was designed by Japanese artist Yuko Shimizu, who at the time was not trying to create an icon, but was simply doodling! She drew inspiration from Japanese bobtail cats and put her own twist on it, giving the drawing no mouth, and a bright red bow. She first captured the hearts of people all over Japan in 1974, when she appeared on a small coin purse, between a bottle of milk and a goldfish bowl!

Hello Kitty

Sanrio is the name of Japanese company that began distributing Hello Kitty all over the world in 1976. They've also introduced her family, and gave her a background... for instance, did you know that she was born in the suburbs of London, and weighs as much as three apples? :)

Sanrio has also featured Hello Kitty in mass produced collectible items like necklaces, folders, pencils and more. In the 1980s, a Hello Kitty craze swept the United States, and anything with her likeness sold like hotcakes - she was even featured on a couple of different cartoon shows and her image graced appliances, dolls and other items. In Japan, Sanrio has opened two Hello Kitty theme parks called Harmonyland and Sanrio Puroland, both of which delight millions of visitors every year!

Hello Kitty Hello Kitty

Hello Kitty is beloved not only for her cute image in colourful backgrounds, but also for her optimism and happy messages - despite her lack of mouth. Sanrio representatives say this particular characteristic helps people project their feelings on the character, and that because she speaks from the heart, she isn't bound to any language.

These days, Hello Kitty continues to appear on everything from jewellery to laptop sleeves... and of course, many beloved postcards! You can learn more about Hello Kitty’s stunning rise to fame and check her many themed products on the Sanrio website.

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Posted by on 15 Feb, 2013
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29 comments so far

carolinechia, Malaysia
Finally! Hello Kitty on postcrossing spotlight haha.., we LOVED it:) everybody loves it!
Posted by carolinechia on 15 Feb, 2013

rosenbusch, Germany
This little cat is sooo cute....
Posted by rosenbusch on 15 Feb, 2013

hopeley, United States of America
But where do you buy current postcards? Our Sanrio store in Norhern California does not carry postcards, everything but.... I purchased an old postcard book of a few Hello Kitty and her friends. But I still am perplexed where to purchase Hello Kitty postcards?
Posted by hopeley on 15 Feb, 2013

meiadeleite, Portugal
@hopeley there seem to be some sets on amazon UK (, though less on the US store.
Posted by meiadeleite on 15 Feb, 2013

Saouri, Spain
Awww. I love Hello Kitty postcards.
I've just received a few but all those postcards are lovely.
Posted by Saouri on 15 Feb, 2013

Alina92, Germany
Maybe one day you could also write about the Moomins? I think this would be very interesting, too :)
Posted by Alina92 on 15 Feb, 2013

idus, Germany
"This little cat is sooo cute...."-
Exactly! I already loved it as a child. :-)
Posted by idus on 15 Feb, 2013

Ejsirk, Netherlands
I love Charmmy Kitty! She's a really cute spin off from Hello Kitty.
Posted by Ejsirk on 15 Feb, 2013

geminiscp, Portugal
She has my age??? WOW! :D Too pinkish for my taste but sometimes I can't resist it. ;)
Posted by geminiscp on 15 Feb, 2013

bridgelover, Japan
Actually Kitty is evolving. Look at the Kitty carefully :-〇
I love Kitty 's cute boyfriend Daniel.He came back from New York.
Posted by bridgelover on 15 Feb, 2013

sinta, Indonesia
Most of my school & office supplies are Hello Kitty. She's just like a friend. Now I have collected +- 200 HK postcards!
Posted by sinta on 15 Feb, 2013

sacdalton, United States of America
What a wonderful post on postcrossing! I've been collecting and sending Hello Kitty items since 1980. Some of my favorite cards I've received are Hello Kitty postcards.
Posted by sacdalton on 15 Feb, 2013

kaatjevliet, Netherlands
I think Hello Kitty is a copy of Nijntje,
who was created by Dick Bruna in 1955.
Posted by kaatjevliet on 15 Feb, 2013

elagipsy, Netherlands

I like Hello Kitty, but i like Miffy, nijntje, more. She was designed by Dick Bruna years before HK was designed. I've often wondered why Hello Kitty could excist beside Miffy. Will you make a post on Miffy or even better on Dick Bruna too? He is a dutch artist. Hope you will.

Posted by elagipsy on 15 Feb, 2013

YiliLoh, Malaysia
Hello kitty is my favourite! ♥
Posted by YiliLoh on 16 Feb, 2013

marivan, Belgium
Musti is a little Belgian kitten that looks a lot like Nijntje and Kitty but is the oldest of them all.Like Picasso said : good artists copy, great artists steal....
Posted by marivan on 16 Feb, 2013

dandilion, Netherlands
I am not a cat person, but Hello Kitty stole my heart!
Posted by dandilion on 16 Feb, 2013

LittleCableCars, United States of America
I didn't care for Hello Kitty until a Postcrosser sent me one of Hello Kitty relaxing with a mai tai on a desert island beach. :) Now I love the way she is drawn. PM me if you want to know where to get her cards in San Francisco. I found some yesterday.
Posted by LittleCableCars on 17 Feb, 2013

YITICH, Taiwan
I like Hello Kitty: )
Hello Kitty is my favorite one~
Posted by YITICH on 17 Feb, 2013

wadesay, Indonesia
I received a Hello Kitty stamp from Japan, and I like it! :D
Posted by wadesay on 17 Feb, 2013

elagipsy, Netherlands
Thank you Honzuki for the link to The Dick Bruna post!
Posted by elagipsy on 17 Feb, 2013

rawtil4, Germany
I've got a lot of hello kitty postcards and I love to send them to other postcrossers! ^_^
Posted by rawtil4 on 17 Feb, 2013

May1314, China
I like Hello kitty,too.I like it when I was child!!
Posted by May1314 on 18 Feb, 2013

rosenbusch, Germany
Thank you Honzuki for the links to Dick Bruna and the moomins!
Posted by rosenbusch on 19 Feb, 2013

mingshu, Finland
iam a true hello kitty fan for ever ^^
Posted by mingshu on 20 Feb, 2013

JC81, Italy
I love Hello Kitty! I have many things with HK but I can never find postcards here. Thanks to some nice postcrossers now I have a few, they are all adorable:)
Posted by JC81 on 24 Feb, 2013

helleke61, Netherlands
I Love Hello Kitty!!!
Posted by helleke61 on 25 Feb, 2013

finoish, Indonesia
i always love Hello Kitty! :D
Posted by finoish on 19 Mar, 2013

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