Hello Kitty, Why Are You EVERYWHERE? PLUS: The Trick That Makes Forever21 Stuff Look 300% Pricier

Everyone who knows me is aware of my weakness for the mouth-less little creature known as Hello Kitty.

Dec 1, 2011 at 10:00am | Leave a comment

It's no secret that I love Hello Kitty... Pretty much everyone who even sort of, kind of knows me is aware of my weakness for this big-headed, mouth-less feline. It's been a thing since I was 4 years old, and when I was a kid Sanrio stuff was considerably harder to find (family trips to San Francisco culminated in huge shopping sprees at the now extinct Sanrio Store).

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Nowadays, it seems as if Hello Kitty has pimped herself out to just about every big box store and some smaller companies; my Ma says she's the new Mickey Mouse. It was recently a big deal that Hello Kitty and Forever 21 collaborated, and while the results are pretty effing cute (I scooped up 3 pieces), I was wondering, why is this a BD? That little cat is already at Target (duct tape!), Wal-Mart (sleep shorts!), Liberty of London, JC Penney, Tokidoki, Sephora, Heatherette (back in the day), and probably a lot of other places that I'm missing. Anyway, despite my slight bitterness that Hello Kitty is no longer sort of hard to find, I still love her a lot.

And that brings me to my beloved Forever 21 for Hello Kitty cardi. I bought the beige, 3/4-sleeved (10% angora!) sweater that features HK's head on the right hip (for the record, I also got the black mesh long-sleeved top and the umbrella). When I bought it, it looked like this:

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Cute! But the BUTTONS. They were driving me insane; they betray the cheapo-ness of the sweater. A dead giveaway.  So I replaced the buttons with real metal-rimmed, sturdy vintage buttons I found at my parents' house:

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Replacing the buttons on a cardigan or button-down is so easy; you can find good quality vintage buttons at junk stores for peanuts, and your clothes will instantly feel brand new. My sister once replaced the white buttons on a simple white oxford shirt with black buttons; all of a sudden, chic! Fresh!

On top of everything, this is a simple project that takes no time at all, but you'll feel accomplished and good about yourself when you're finished.  Try it. (Another trick to make your Forever21 clothes look a bit more pricey is to promptly cut out those plastic hanging loops they put in EVERY piece of clothing. Yuck!) 

Who can help me find a replacement for Hello Kitty? Is ANYONE cuter than her? I doubt it. Prove me wrong.