Kawaii interview: Kelsey Kimono Time

Hi there Kelsey, we're so happy to have you do this interview with us, thank you! To start, tell us a little about you! (just for those who don't know from youtube already, how old you are, where you're from and what you do when you aren't being a Kawaii superstar!)

Hi! My name's Kelsey Ellison, I'm 22 years old and I'm from Barnsley in the U.K. I cover Jpop and Kpop on youtube (https://www.youtube.com/user/KimonoTime) and I also just released a single called "Pom Pom" which was greatly inspired by those styles. I'm way too obsessed with alpaca plushies and bourbon biscuits.

1. Okay on to the questions! Where would you say your love of Kawaii fashion came from/started (was it anime? manga? j-pop etc..?), and who is your biggest inspiration right now?

I was obsessed with Gwen Stefani when I was younger and I loved the Harajuku girls style. That's where it all really started! My biggest inspiration right now is not just one thing or person, but I just love looking at street style in Japan and Korea. 

2. Can you tell us about your performing journey so far? (where did your performing begin, and how did your online journey begin? was it with your Nyan Cat dance cover 3 years ago, or maybe something before that none of us know about?) and what do you remember about the time you started making youtube videos/doing stuff online? 

I've been performing since I was 5 years old! I started at dance school, and then at around 11 I joined a musical theatre school. At 16, I decided I wanted to perform for a living, so I went to a musical theatre college called S.L.P in Leeds. It was when I was at college, that I found out about jpop dancing online. I loved Jpop and performing, so I thought it would be a perfect little hobby to do! I can remember me filming my first dance video. I'd seen a cover of someone dancing to Hare Hare Yukai and discovered the whole jpop dance culture online. Then my friend told me to watch Beckii Cruel's documentary and I got really inspired to try it out. It was summer in 2010 and I borrowed my friends school like jacket and filmed the dance in my bedroom in only two shots because it was so warm! When I uploaded it, I was so nervous and I didn't know if I was just being stupid. I didn't tell any of my friends or family I had uploaded it, so I was shocked when it got a couple of hundred views in the first few days!

3. What things other than dancing, j-poping and generally being super kawaii do you get up to in your spare time, and what are you up to at the moment?

Since I've finished college/university I'm not studying anymore. I am studying Japanese and Korean though. I spend a lot of time making things for my videos, putting set lists together for performances and creating new ideas so it takes up a lot of my time. But I do love just chilling and watching a new TV series, or shopping for new clothes in my spare time! 

4. You have many talents! You're a dancer and a singer ( with a musical theatre degree already! Go you!) - if you could have your dream job what would it be? What are your dreams for the next few years?

My ultimate dream is to travel and perform at the same time! So I'm going to go all out and try my best to make that happen!

5. Can you tell us a nice memory you have linked to a particular outfit and why that memory is special to you? (if you have a pic thats great)

The outfit I picked is when I worked for a concept magazine called SYPM (shut your pretty mouth) at London Fashion Week. I had so much fun working, and dressing in my own style, and it reminds me of my fun days in London when I used to live there. 

6. Your pretty famous now ~ what is your experience of other people within the Kawaii community? And what is it like to have so many fans?

I don't think I am compared to a lot of youtubers! But the kawaii community is very unique and exciting! Everyone has the same interests so it's easy to make friends. 
I'm just grateful and surprised that a lot of people want to watch me doing what I love! Youtube-ing was and still is my most fun hobby and I always forget I have an audience until I go to events and people know me! 

Kelsey fan art by nikkihatsune

7. Whats the most surprising thing a fan/someone has done for you/sent you?

I'm always surprised when people send me fan art. I can't believe people would want to spend their time and efforts drawing me! 

8. If you had a super-power what would it be and why?

To speak every language in the world, because I could make so many more friends and when I travel I could have so much more fun!

9. Favorite foods? And a food you HATE!

I love katsu curry and dairy milk chocolate! I really hate tuna and mayonnaise! 

10. What's your favorite thing to curl up under a blanket and watch?

Buffy The Vampire Slayer, the TV series.

11. You perform at a lot of events all over the country ~ so far what has been your favorite performing experience and why?

I've loved every single one and all of them I have great memories with. I really loved the audience when I performed at ALcon though! They were so into it and I had lighting and people had glow sticks, it was so much fun!

12. What kind of things inspire you to create your outfits/how do you put things together? Do you have a process? What are your favorite styles?

I usually get inspired by music videos or images I see on tumblr.  When I get up in the morning, I kind of dress to my mood. If I'm feeling girly, I'll wear something pink and I'll curl my hair. If I'm feeling more cool or I'm dancing that day, I like to wear something more boyish and 2NE1 style. I love so many styles, I couldn't pick one, but I do love mixing girly colours and making it a bit more cool!

13. If you were asked to explain what is so great about Kawaii/Japanese fashion and culture to someone from another planet, what would you say? What is it you love about it?

What's so great about it is that there are no limits! And like I said, you can dress to your mood. You can be creative in what you wear, and it's never a chore getting ready! They are all the reasons why I love it so much!

14. If this same alien abducted all of your possessions, but let you keep 3 things what would they be?

My alpacas, my laptop and my bed!

15. Do you have a favorite accessory or piece of clothing out of all of your super cute stuff? If so what is it and why? (link me a pic if you can Black heart (cards))

I love everything I own or else I wouldn't have got it! I tend to have a favourite as soon as I've bought it and then something else a few months later. At the moment it's this kawaii cheerleader set I got from Glitters For Dinner.

16. Do you see yourself always being a youtuber? 

I think one day I will stop eventually, but I'm going to carry on doing it as long as I love it! I may not do jpop/kpop covers forever, but I love vlogging and documenting my life, because it's always nice to look back on. So I may stop when I'm 30, I may stop when I'm 80! It all depends on circumstances in life and whether I enjoy it still. But for now I'm loving it, so I don't think it ill be anytime soon!

17. Finally, what would you say to anyone interested in kawaii fashion/culture who might be nervous? Or perhaps to a budding singer/dancer/youtuber?

Just go for it! It was the best decision I ever made in my life, it gave me new friends and it really helped me become the more confident and true to self person I am today! The first video or photo is always the most nerve wrecking, but if you don't try, you'll never know. If you try and don't like it, at least you know instead of regretting years later. There are tons of lovely people out there that are friendly and supportive, and of course there are negative people online, but that's life! It shouldn't be about views and fans, it should be about having fun! If you're not having fun, there is no point! Even if it's just 5 people following you, that's 5 lovely people who support you!

Thank you so much for wanting to interview me!

You're so welcome Kelsey! Thank you for answering our questions! Below is Kelsey's debut single "Pom Pom" and a link to her blogger! We hope you enjoyed this super Kawaii Interview!

Kelsey's Youtube Channel

More interviews with Kelsey

Thanks for choosing Kawaii-B! Your number one place for Kawaii in the UK!

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