Sanrio’s Hello Kitty, that adorable cartoon cat that comes to us from Japanese popular culture, has appeared on a host of commercial products from credit cards to the Hello Kitty Jet (an Airbus A330-220). The character, designed by Yuko Shimizu, debuted in 1974 as a decoration on a vinyl coin purse.
To celebrate the 35th anniversary of Hello Kitty in 2009, Sanrio partnered with crystal maker Swarovski and Japanese jeweler I.K. to create the Super Hello Kitty Jewel Doll. This 4-inch “doll” is made of solid platinum studded with thousands of precious gems, including 1,939 pieces of white topaz, 403 pink sapphires, a pair of black spinels for her eyes, a citrine for her nose and a 1.027-carat diamond on her signature bow.
The ultimate Hello Kitty doll was unveiled at Switzerland’s Baselworld watch and jewelry show and is valued at 15 million yen—about US $167,000!
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