You might want to know more about Japanese kawaii culture, and that’s why we’ve created something fun for you: it’s the A to Z to Cutiesquad. We’re taking you through a few typical kawaii phenomena that are linked to us. Ain’t that clever? Here we go.
C is for Crunchyroll
This website started as a non-profit website that showed anime and manga, and creators and fans could upload their own episodes. Now, it’s the most prominent platform worldwide to watch anime and manga, for free or with a subscription and is a sponsor of many anime-based YouTube channels. As you can imagine, we spend way too many hours on Crunchyroll and are a huge fan.
U is for Uniforms
Probably the most known fashion-style by Japanese girls is their love for wearing uniforms and look like they’re in boarding school. Think: Big collars, Betty Boop inspired kitten heels, stockings and a big bow in their hair. But even in this style, there are sub-styles like the Bad Gals who wear micro skirts, loose socks and have a rock star attitude. Nonetheless, the kawaii uniform is so much part of the Japanese culture, that even the Japanese army has made attempts to make their uniform cuter.
T is for Takashi Murakami
Probably the most famous contemporary Japanese artist. He not only creates fine art but also commercial work for media, anime and fashion. Known for his smiling painted flowers, his 13-year collaboration with Louis Vuitton, and working together with Kanye West. He is well known for his Superflat theory, in which he blurs the line between “high” and “low” culture.
I is for I, or me!
I’m Gladys P. Nut, founder and creator of CutieSquad. My love for drawing and all things Japanese are combined in my company of all things cute. CutieSquad is based on my gang of crazy, loveable characters whom I’ve brought to life and who have all kinds of wild adventures, funny sayings and kissable cheeks.
E is for Emoji
Emojis are known all over the world and used by people of all ages. They even made a film about emojis! There are some emojis that don’t exactly mean what non-Japanese people think they mean (🙏🏼 🙌🏼). Just like popular culture has also given new meaning to perfectly innocent fruit- and vegetable emojis (hi there, 🍑🍆). Emojis have enriched language, and are here to stay. You will never get an email or text message from CutieSquad without an emoji 😽. The first set of emojis was launched in 1997, and do you know which famous one was part of that OG set? You might have guessed it: this one 💩.
S is for Shibuya
Which neighbours the famous Harajuku district, home to everything kawaii. Harajuku is the place to be, especially Takeshita-dori street which is filled with shops bursting with kawaii-items. Here you’ll also find the famous purikura, where you can step into a photo booth and get your picture taken in total kawaii-style✌️.
Q is for qute 😉
Because yes, that is what you first think about when you hear kawaii. And we know, you don’t spell cute with the letter Q, but we couldn’t think of anything else. Kawaii is of course, not just about being cute, it’s about being loveable.
U is for universal.
Kawaii is not just a culture but also a lifestyle; it’s the universal language of cuteness and loveable; it’s an eternal and all-encompassing love that brightens everything up and makes you embrace your inner child and see the light in the dark.
A is for Anime
Which is derived from animation. All illustrations and animations from Japan are considered anime, regardless of the style. Outside of Japan, many do find only a specific style typical of anime. Anime films are recognisable by using camera effects, like zooming, motion and certain angles. Famous anime studios are Studio Ghibli (My neighbour Totoro, Spirited Away), Toei Animation (Dragonball, The Transformers) and Gainax (Neon Genesis Evangelion, Royal Space Force).
D is for Dressing up
Not just dressing up in uniform (see U) but also dressing things up by embellishing daily products and making sure that they tick the kawaii box. At CutieSquad HQ you’ll never find a blue pen, they’re all pink, our post-it notes are pink, even our toilet paper is..you guessed it: pink! We even like to draw cute little friends on the bathroom mirror.
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