Oh hello…kitty

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Hello Kitty is the extent of my girliness. It is the prime example  of  everything cute and girly…I’m not very girly but I’m just a chick that happens to be madly  in love with Hello Kitty. I’ve had a few people jokingly say “you look like Hello Kitty” and my immediate response to that is, “thank you”. Guys, I take that as a compliment.

This character is Sanrio’s frontrunner who brings in $7 billion worth of annual revenue. This $7 billion is coming only from a cat! I like her is  because she is easy to draw and behind all her cuteness, she’s a badass.  A successful pop culture icon, Hello Kitty even made it to my favorite TV series, Breaking Bad. So badass right? I remember my 7th grade homeroom teacher Mrs. Kozak had an uncontrollable desire for Hello Kitty. Her love for the cat was always evident…everyday she brought a kitty pencil case filled with kitty-branded pens, pencils, erasers and mini rulers.

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Scenes from season 5 of Breaking Bad.

Along with being our homeroom teacher, she was also our  Science teacher at the time. Once we had to do a PowerPoint presentation outlining  one of our  chosen elements from the periodic table. Powerpoint presentations were my favorite assignments throughout high school because I got overly  absorbed in  designing each slide with exaggerated graphics, fancy animations and text effects. I aced every one of these assignments because attention to design is what really made my performance visually engaging  (and made up for my poor speaking skills).

In my Science presentation I made a bold move  to add Hello Kitty GIFs to every slide so that I could REALLY get Mrs. Kozak’s attention. She wasn’t an easy teacher to please so I knew there had to be something that stood out and didn’t seem as repetitive as the other presentations. I wasn’t there to impress the students watching my presentation, at the end of the day I was marked by the teacher, therefore she’s my target audience – she was the only person in the room I had to impress. I could tell people were giving me weird looks after my presentation, but it’s okay as long as Mrs Kozak liked it hah!

Mrs. Kozak made me like Hello Kitty more than I did before. The GIFs I used were cute and hilarious, they were thoughtfully and strategically placed to lead the eye from one information to the next. It made me warm and fuzzy on the inside, hence the good marks I scored in the end (thanks Kozak).

I like to consider  Hello Kitty as  my pet cat (I’m allergic to real cats so I’m better off sticking to this one instead). The simplicity of Hello Kitty’s image makes it a very versatile brand, capable of being applied on anything ranging from affordable items to high-end products. In my house, you’ll find some of random Hello Kitty goodies here and there, which is what I want to share with you today. Ladies and gents, welcome to my Hello Kitty appreciation post.

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An extendable kitty laptop  light

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Bedside lamp
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Pyjama set

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Door vinyl

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Pencil cases and Nintendo DS case

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Miniature kitty set and a bobble head

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Instant noodles, with edible kitty heads.

Jean Paul Gaultier for Target

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There hasn’t been much promotion going on around Melbourne but I do want to point out the awesome 20th annual event of Virgin Australia’s Melbourne Fashion Festival. The event took place  from  March 7th to the 13th and it was one hell of a week filled with elite  runways, seminars and workshops for aspiring fashion designers and fashion enthusiasts around Melbourne, particularly myself. Thanks to Creative Victoria, I was extremely fortunate this year to book a  seat  at my first runway show, and it couldn’t get any better knowing  it was Jean Paul Gaultier’s show for Target.

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Whenever someone asks you to define “Haute Couture” you should tell them to google Jean Paul Gaultier. His designs are a  vehicle for driving haute couture to the highest limits, without Gaultier there are no couture shows that are comparable to his. If you love architecture and fashion then he’s your guy – most of his prominent works blur the lines between these two fields of practice. His crazy outlook on the world, over-exaggerated costume ideas and success had previously landed him a role as a creative director in Hermes for over 7 years. After Hermes, Gaultier’s  name kept surpassing the list of best designers in the world,  an exhibition was even held in Montreal to celebrate his prodigious  career. You may have also noticed his exhibition at the NGV last year, The Fashion World of Gaultier. I’m disappointed I didn’t get a chance to go but my friend who went did learn that his first runway shows featured men wearing skirts. Hah how cute!

It came to my surprise earlier this year  to hear Gaultier doing  a collaboration with Target Australia to create an affordable range of clothing as part of the ‘designers for Target’ movement. Seeing a designer who’s so used to doing  cutting-edge designs and now creating a simpler range is a pretty challenging move.  Last time there was Roberto Cavalli which seemed to be a success. After seeing the runway I thought Gaultier  executed the Target range quite well, I spotted a bit of Gaultier with the trademark corset and cone bra designs sewn onto  some of the garments. I didn’t get to take many photos but  when I did, they were mostly blurry and unusable for this post. I should’ve brought my DSLR! Here’s a quick look of JPG’s notable playful aesthetics:

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Madonna with Gaultier’s cone corset

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JPG Haute Couture 2014

fall 2009

Fall 2009

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Fall 2008

spring 2014

Changing the world one chapter at a time

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Photo credits: Thankyou.co

Tackling poverty is a reoccurring, problematic  issue. We know what it is and we’ve seen it before. In fact, uni made me care about it more. So Mon why do you care about the poor? The thing with most people is that once they see  people living in  unjust  conditions, they start to feel sorry for them. All of a sudden they care about fighting poverty because of their emotions towards the poor. Guys, making decisions should never be based on your emotions.

Poverty means “wasted lives” – remember, there’s also a vast  majority who’ve missed opportunities to grow and learn but never take it and end up being poor. These people are prone to bullying, crime, illnesses, and starting radical groups…all of which  create a path to severely  impacting the economy. I believe no one deserves to   experience poverty. The source of the problem is actually us, we still treat and view them as if they’re poor by donating goods or  forcing them to work at such a low rate. They don’t want to be reminded as poor people. They don’t need donations. They need guidance and self-motivation.

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Like myself, there are many people who want to combat poverty and think that it is achievable. Emily, a friend of mine from uni introduced me to the great work of  Thankyou.  Thankyou is a great example of a group  who believe poverty should not exist. You may have seen their water bottles, food and body care products. They’re  a social enterprise who is fully devoted to ending poverty.

Turning the attention towards us and forcing ourselves to realize  that we  are the causes of poverty is the first step to alleviating  the problem. What adjustments in our lives we can make to help fight global issues like poverty? The Thankyou project is the perfect solution to help  us with this decision making process. Their new  book is designed to inspire and to see and do things differently. It talks about the need to implement more and more fresh ideas instead of the traditional “donating” method.

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Moreover, it outlines Thankyou’s past, present and future and investing in this book means investing in their grand vision for the future. Their book, Chapter One, is the start of this epic journey to fight global poverty. Anyone can buy a book at any price they wish. By the end of March, the aim is to get $1.2million in crowd funding and 100% of the  proceeds go towards what I like to call it as their “chapter two” phase,  which will focus on two things: developing a range of  Thankyou baby care products to fund maternal and infant health programs (Thankyou Baby) and expanding the Thankyou  project to New Zealand (Thankyou New Zealand). Every chapter is a checkpoint towards the big goal and co founder Daniel Flynn is going  to write a story every step of the way.

“I know it sounds a little crazy to be growing an organisation from funds generated by the sale of a book, because traditionally books don’t make a whole lot of money. But at Thankyou we don’t usually do things traditionally.”

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A right-brainer by day and occasional blogger by night, you've landed on a place where I live and breathe all things art, design, culture and fashion. You'll find me documenting my life in the creative field, endless travels with friends and family and a bit of food.

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