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Sanrio/Hello Kitty – 50 Years

November 21, 2010

In the newspaper a couple of weeks ago, there was a meet and greet event for Hello Kitty at the local mall.  As much as I was tempted to go, deep down inside I didn’t need to spend a few hours of my life waiting in line to meet and have my picture taken with Hello Kitty.

She is an icon, perhaps comparable to Japan’s version of “Barbie.”  Like Barbie she’s still popular (even more so than 20 yrs ago) and hasn’t aged one bit!  Other characters have come and gone (been retired), but Miss Kitty is still here.   (She’s probably more internationally recognized than then Emperor and Empress of Japan!)

Going to the Sanrio stores in LA was such a treat.  (It was difficult to find Hello Kitty merchandise in San Diego.)   I loved buying the pencils, pens, notebooks, stickers, pencil holders, almost everything!  For every $1 purchase (this was in the OLD days) your stamp cards could be exchanged for a small gift.    Ohh… and don’t forget the little toy that came on the outside of the bag!

So, I grew out of Sanrio and Hello Kitty.  But there is something about her magnetic personality that still can draw a lady in her 20’s in.  Of course when I went to Japan I knew I was heading into Hello Kitty territory.  This is where she was born after all!  I went to several Hello Kitty stores; everything was so cute!   Disappointingly many of the less expensive goods are manufactured in China, not Japan.  The higher end stuff like handbags, watches, purses are still made in Japan though.

Anyway, since this is a food blog on to the pictures.  In honor of Sanrio/Hello Kitty’s 50th anniversary, I dug up some old Japan photos.

Hello Kitty vending machine at a rest stop. Just thought this was ADORABLE!  The drinks in the vending machine were not Hello Kitty related though.


Hello Kitty inari. At Shibuya station they have food!  Lots of different food vendors.  I enjoyed walking around at least once as week to see what they offered.  One day I found these cute little things.


Happy 50th Hello Kitty!


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