New! Rilakkuma x Hankyu Railway + Rilakkuma x Lawson Lemon Series playset!

Quick update: more train bears! WOW – Rilakkuma is partnering with Hankyu Railway!

Rilakkuma x Hankyu - full

Rilakkuma x Hankyu (リラックマ×阪急電車) stationmaster plushie: 2052円.

Definitely a “must get” for me! My family took the Hankyu Railway (阪急電車) when we were visiting Kyoto and Osaka 2 years ago (wow, doesn’t time fly?). This amazing collaboration comes out April 2 at the Umeda Rilakkuma Store, and April 9 at other stores (see the official press release for more details).

So awesome, and I’m sure my other transportation bears (Yamanote Line, Shinkansen, and Dr. Yellow) are looking forward to meeting this Hankyu Rilakkuma, too! I love these collaborations!!

Also, check out this Lawson x Rilakkuma Fresh Lemon Series plush playset!

Rilakkuma x Lawson Fresh Lemon Series - full

Where can I get a sleeping bag like that! Playset: 4212円.

Wow, a lemon sleeping bag!! Very, very adorable – of course Rilakkuma and friends could make something as sour as a lemon look sweet! Pre-orders are open now, and this snug plush playset is planned to be officially released on July 2!

Okay back to studying for me!! Let me know what Rilakkuma items you have your eye on!

Rilakkuma & SHINKANSEN Plushie! + Rilakkuma Day @ FAO Schwarz NYC + New! Misdo Rilakkma 2014!

Please give a warm welcome to Shinkansen Rilakkuma!

Rilakkuma & Shinkansen - full

Bullet train bear!

Rilakkuma & Shinkansen - front

Front and center!

Rilakkuma & Shinkansen - top

S1 denotes the 8-car N700-7000 series train set!

Rilakkuma & Shinkansen - side

Cool detail that the side window/door design is slightly different from the Dr. Yellow series!

Rilakkuma & Shinkansen - back

And of course, reminding you which series this bullet train bear is from on the back!

Rilakkuma & Shinkansen - tag art

Tag art features Rilakkuma conspicuously not as a train haha, just riding one.

Rilakkuma & Shinkansen - with Dr. Yellow

The two bullet train bears meet! Will there be more to join them in the future?

Super adorable! This bear-turned-train/train-turned-bear was released August 2014 to commemorate the Tōkaidō Shinkansen’s 50th birthday!

The Shinkansen (新幹線) is a network of high-speed railways in Japan, and the Tōkaidō Shinkansen is the world’s busiest high-speed rail line – it has transported more passengers than any other line in the world!

Richelle mentioned that this Shinkansen Rilakkuma kinda looks like an airplane haha – especially since trains aren’t terribly commonplace where I’m from, I’d agree too haha.

You know, I never thought of myself as someone who was really fanatical about transportation, but I’ve collected all of the train line-related Rilakkumas so far (Yamanote, Dr. Yellow, and now Shinkansen) so who knows anymore haha.

NYC Rilakkuma fans! Rilakkuma Day is coming to FAO Schwarz NYC on October 11 from 1-4PM!

Rilakkuma Day 2014 - cover

Mark your calendars!

This event will feature a special Rilakkuma photo booth, Rilakkuma prize packs for those who post their Rilakkuma day photos on social media, Rilakkuma-themed lolita girls, as well as the latest Rilakkuma goods!

Even if you can’t make the event, Rilakkuma displays will be up at the NYC FAO Schwarz for the rest of October!

Since I’m all the way down south here in Florida, I unfortunately will not be able to attend T^T but! I’ll be interviewing the lead organizer of this event afterwards, so stay tuned!

If you do end up attending, shoot me an email at rilakkumalifestyle@gmail.com – I would love to hear how you thought the event went!

In other news, check out the newest iteration of Mister Donut x Rilakkuma for 2014!

Misdo Rilakkuma 2014 - cover 1

Yum!

Misdo Rilakkuma 2014 - cover 2

Three flannel blanket designs!

This year’s collaboration includes 3 blanket designs (70 cm x 120 cm) featuring Rilakkuma and pals with the many different donut types offered at Mister Donut!

From what I understand, for every purchase over 300円 at a participating Mister Donut, you get a card, and then you can redeem 8 cards for one of these special edition Misdo Rilakkuma blankets – wow!

If I can, I’m gonna try to snag one on the auctions! It’s about to start getting chilly (well, relatively), so I could use a nice warm blanket! I’m thinking the pink or blue design right now – which do you like best?

Rilakkuma’s collaborations with Mister Donut have always held a special place in my heart – my Misdo Rilakkuma plushie was one of the first in my collection!

Lots of cool Rilakkuma things for the month of October! What are you looking forward to the most?

Monet’s La Japonaise Rilakkuma Plushie! + New! Cat Series Store Exclusive Design!

I can’t wait to share this Rilakkuma with you – it’s La Japonaise Rilakkuma!

La Japonaise Rilakkuma - full

Beautiful vivid colors, just like Monet was famous for! And good to finally see a Rilakkuma turning to his right side hahaha

La Japonaise Rilakkuma - Kiiroitori detail

Kiiroitori standing in as the fearsome samurai!

La Japonaise Rilakkuma - fan detail

Rilakkuma holds a beautiful red, white, and blue fan – and even the white crescent matches the original art!

La Japonaise Rilakkuma - dango, leaf detail

A parallel metallic leaf motif, and of course Rilakkuma would be hiding away a dango in his left paw!

La Japonaise Rilakkuma - tag art

Tag art featuring the illustrated Rilakkuma interpretation of the original piece! Looks like Kiiroitori hopped off the kimono for this one haha

La Japonaise Rilakkuma - sketch

Simon also drew this sketch of La Japonaise Rilakkuma today – I love it!

Wikimedia - La Japonaise

What do you think? Does the Rilakkuma interpretation capture the essence of the original work to you? I think the Rilakkuma version is much more adorable hehehe

This Rilakkuma design is based on Claude Monet’s La Japonaise (above). As I wrote about in a previous post, this Rilakkuma plush is especially exceptional to me because it’s such a subversive take on the Western gaze upon Japan that was so dominant during the era of Japonsime. Besides being exceedingly cute, this plushie design has so many layers to it as a Japanese take on a famous Western piece inspired by Japan.

This plushie commemorates Looking East: Western Artists and the Allure of Japan, an exhibit at the Setagaya Art Museum in Tokyo this summer where Monet’s La Japonaise was displayed! The exhibit will also be moving to Nagoya in January, and I’m guessing this Rilakkuma will be following La Japonaise there as well!

Korilakkuma was summarily left out in the plushie design, but you can sneak a few peaks of her in the background fans of the illustrated version of this design.

In other news, check out the Rilakkuma Store Exclusive line for the Cat Series!

Cat Series Store Exclusive - Rilakkuma

Pull the toy mouse from Rilakkuma’s ear and watch them come back together again! 1,680円.

Cat Series Rilakkuma Store Exclusive - Kiiroitori

Kiiroitori is interactive too! 1,680円.

Cat Series Rilakkuma Store Exclusive - Korilakkuma

Korilakkuma sadly doesn’t have an interactive component to her, but she does still have a little kitten to play with! 1,380円.

Wow! I love how interactive these plushies will be!

These plushies will be released October 4th. Wow, can’t believe October is so close – guess I have to start looking for a Halloween costume!

In American news, San-X was recruiting for Rilakkuma lolita girls to staff their NYC events on October 10-11! Darn, official Rilakkuma events always seem to be so far away, but one day, I hope to be able to cover an event like this in person to share with all of you!

Whew! I am so glad to be done with that cardiopulmonary exam – what a doozy! Now that I’m in the endocrine/reproductive module, I feel much more relaxed like Rilakkuma!

JAXA + Space Series Rilakkuma Plushies: Double Feature! + New! Kichijoji 4th Anniversary + JINS PC promo photos + Cat Cafe!

Let’s get things rolling! Wrapping up the summer, check out my final 2 cosmic Rilakkumas!

First up: JAXA Rilakkuma!

JAXA - full

Ready for work in his JAXA jumpsuit!

JAXA - left side detail

Cute Rilakkuma ID patch, with the Japanese flag on his left sleeve!

JAXA - rocketship detail

Rocketship with a bear-shaped window!! His jumpsuit also zips down, but not removable due to this little rocketship, which is sewn to his suit.

JAXA - right side detail

His ride side features the JAXA logo and a Rilakkuma design on the right sleeve!

JAXA - back detail

And of course, a giant JAXA emblem in the back! Love that his uniform also left a little room for his tail haha

JAXA - tag art

Tag art: not so JAXA themed, but a cute space design! Also one of the only rectangular tags in the series!

Doesn’t he look like such a hard worker?

Not only was this dutiful JAXA employee a cool collab between JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) and Rilakkuma, but he was also a special product for the Space Expo 2014: The Great Challenge of NASA · JAXA! He was first released in July 2014 as an extension of the Space Series.

Special thank you to Trinie for the Space Series bag that is the beautiful backdrop for today’s photoshoot!! These shopping bags are so meaningful to me because as a Rilakkuma fan who depends on online ordering, I rarely get the special edition bags for every series! Especially as a fan who loves the illustrations, I am so appreciative – thanks a ton, Trinie!!

Speaking of the Space Series, next up is Space Series Rilakkuma!

Space Series - full

Greetings from outer space!

Space Series - suit detail

His space suit has a similar color scheme and belt as the Space Series Store Exclusive Rilakkuma, but with different designs: this suit features a different Rilakkuma logo as well as a dango with its planetary rings!

Space Series - back

Rilakkuma’s space suit is completely attached to his body so no signs of the back zipper typical of Rilakkuma, but there is somewhat of a replication of his back zipper on his helmet!

Space Series - back detail

Amazingly cute embroidery in the back, with a little planet as the dot in the “i”! I also love the three stars embroidered throughout the suit and helmet, which represent the 3 colors of the Rilakkuma team’s suits (yellow for Rilakkuma, pink for Korilakkuma, and blue for Kiiroitori).

Space Series - helmet switch

His helmet is removable by the back zipper, and can be transferred to any other standard collectible sized bear so they can play astronaut, too! Though the helmet is not the easiest to get on and off due to Rilakkuma’s ears haha

Space Series - tag art

Tag art: similar to the other Space Series plushies, a handsome Rilakkuma lounging on a planet.

Hahaha I think this is the only Rilakkuma I have who is truly covered from head to toe! Well except for his little paws peeking out hehehe.

Like the JAXA collab, the Space Series came out in July 2014.

Since I went a little nuts this summer on Rilakkuma, I decided to restrain myself and only get the brown bear from this set. I think Bear Nation has a pretty thriving space program between this astronaut, JAXA Rilakkuma, planet Rilakkuma, and the 3 space explorers (Rilakkuma, Korilakkuma, Kiiroitori, and Kumartians) haha.

As a JINS PC follow-up: have you seen their super cute promotions and interviews?

Rilakkuma x JINS PC - mascot

Wow… just… devastatingly cute!

Rilakkuma x JINS PC - interview photos

Adorable medically-themed photoshoot featuring Rilakkuma, Korilakkuma, and Bonjour Kiiroitori (where’d he come from??) learning more about JINS PC through an interview with a physician!

Make sure you check out the Rilakkuma page at the JINS website for more cuteness – my favorite is definitely the interview with one of the physicians endorsing the product (lots more adorable photos at the source!).

In plushie news, check out the design for the Kichijoji 4th Anniversary!

Kichijoji 4th Anniversary - cover

Kiiroitori turned into a swan paddle boat! Like the Egg Series, Kiiroitori transforms into another bird species haha. Miniplushies 1,500円 each.

These plushies look really cute and clever hehe, I always love when the designs deviate a little from standard – sitting on things, different facial expressions, etc. The different color theme swan boats (yellow for Rilakkuma, blue for Kiiroitori, and pink for Korilakkuma) is a great touch! I really like how Korilakkuma got her own swan boat crown too haha. These plushies will be available on October 11!

As always, I do love how culturally relevant these anniversary plushies are! Swan paddle boats are a popular attraction at Inokashira Park (井の頭恩賜公園) in Kichijoji.

One day, I hope to visit every Rilakkuma Store, but I especially want to visit Kichijoji because the Ghibli Museum is also in Inokashira Park! Do you like Studio Ghibli films? My favorite is Spirited Away! Though really, I haven’t met a Studio Ghibli film I didn’t like!

For Singaporean Rilakkuma fans: did you hear about the Rilakkuma @ the Cat Cafe event?

Rilakkuma @ Cat Cafe 2014 - cover

Oooh looks like they made a Korilakkuma meal!

Rilakkuma @ Cat Cafe 2014 - Jemolian's Store

Cats love Rilakkuma, too! This photo was taken by Jemolian’s Store, who sold Rilakkuma merchandise at the event!

According to the event page, Bon Japan holds this themed Rilakkuma cafe event every year, and this year, the event was held on August 30 at the Cat Cafe to celebrate the upcoming Cats Series! Hahaha what a clever collaboration!

The Cat Cafe is a cafe that allows you to play with cats while you dine and relax, and part of the proceeds were donated to the Cat Welfare Society!

At this year’s event, a man proposed to his girlfriend of 11 years – in a Rilakkuma suit! Check out a few videos and photos over at Stomp.

I have my first exam of my second year of medical school next Friday on cardiopulmonary diseases so things will be quiet from me until then! Until then, take care!

Space Series Rilakkuma Plushie – Store Exclusive! + New! Halloween 2014, JINS PC, Lawson Cat Series, & Umeda 6th!

Hello, and 好久不見 – long time, no see!

School has really geared up in the past few weeks, so my apologies for the infrequency. But without further ado, check out the Space Rilakkuma Rilakkuma Plushie – Rilakkuma Store Exclusive!

Space Series Store Exclusive - full

Go to the future, Rilakkuma!

Space Series Store Exclusive - pancake detail

One of my favorite details: a stack of pancakes with a star-shaped butter pat on top – mmmm!

Space Series Store Exclusive - dango detail

Ooooh Rilakkuma is also holding a delicious dango with it’s own planetary ring system and star!

Space Series Store Exclusive - space suit

I think they did such a great job with his spacesuit – usually glittery fabric tends to have a coarse texture, but this one (and all the other plushies in this set) have maintained their soft and smooth texture!

Space Series Store Exclusive - space suit detail

More fantastic details: a cute scarf, embroidered Rilakkuma space insignia, and bear-shaped belt buckle!

Space Series Store Exclusive - tag art

Tag art: Rilakkuma promoting space and time travel!

Teehee I really love this bear! I love all the tiny details they put into each plushie in this series, and can’t wait to see all the cool details for what San-X has in store for us next!

This planetary plushie was released in July 2014 as a Rilakkuma Store Exclusive design for the summer Space Series. Since I loved so many of the designs from the Space Series, I limited myself to just the brown bear from this line – I think even then, Bear Nation has a pretty thriving space program!

In seasonal news, be on the lookout for the new Halloween 2014 designs!

Halloween 2014 - plushie set

Rilakkuma and friends off to the masquerade ball! 1,800円 each.

Halloween 2014 - playset

A beautiful playset! My favorite detail is the kuma ghost in the window (and the giant candy doesn’t look too bad, either). 10,000円.

Fantastic! I really love the direction they took with this year’s line – a masquerade party sounds spooky and fun (I’ve never been to one!). These Halloween bears will be released this weekend on September 6.

But wow, aren’t we just starting September? Preparing for Halloween now seems a little pre-emptive to me (though Halloween costume shops are beginning to pop up around my town), but maybe this is a sign that I should start working on a cool costume. Last year, Simon and I went as eggs & bacon! What do you hope to dress up as for Halloween this year?

Rilakkuma looks like he’s going down the mild-mannered route like Superman with the new Rilakkuma x JINS PC collaboration!

Rilakkuma x JINS PC - cover

Rilakkuma falling asleep with his cell phone!

Rilakkuma x JINS PC - designs

Four awesome designs to match Rilakkuma, Korilakkuma, and Kiiroitori, with unique designs on the temples! 4,900円 each

Rilakkuma x JINS PC - plushies

Awesome miniplushies with their own mobile devices, and a tag with a kuma wearing glasses, too! 1,300円 each.

This is such a cool collab! These glasses are specially designed to protect your eyes from the light from your PC and mobile devices, and the color themes are meant to match Rilakkuma and pals – and don’t they just look so smart in those glasses?

Also, check out this fantastic video short by San-X to commemorate this collaboration!

Hehehe this video reminds me a lot of Simon!

Of course, this isn’t the first time Rilakkuma has donned eye protection – the Aloha Rilakkuma series from last year also featured a bespectacled Rilakkuma!

And for you Lawson fans out there, check out this Rilakkuma Cat Series Lawson Exclusive!

Lawson x Rilakkuma Cat Series - Lawson exclusive

Doesn’t kitten Korilakkuma look so sweet in her basket? Oooh a little plush taiyaki too! 2,700円

So cute! Looks like Lawson specials are starting to develop a pattern of their exclusives being in pot-like containers – last year, it was a pie for the Happy Natural Time Series, and this year, it’s a basket! It’s a cute motif, I think.

Pre-orders for this set are now open, but they aren’t scheduled to be delivered until January 19, 2015 (wah). Conveniently, Lawson specials like this are generally available online, so Tenso might be a good resource for international Rilakkuma fans looking for a good price!

For Japanese movie fans, in a pleasantly surprising twist, Rilakkuma/Lawson are also teaming up with film Clover (クローバー)!

Clover - Rilakkuma

Lookin’ stylish in green!

The movie comes out November 1, and if you purchase a ticket in advance, you can get your hands on this lovely keychain plushie! Wow, I would love for American movies to have promotions like this hehehe

Browsing around the official Clover website, looks like the story revolves around a hotel employee who falls in love with her boss, and it is based on a manga series of the same name – not super sure how the movie has to do with Rilakkuma but haha Rilakkuma does look rather cute in green :)

Last but certainly not least, check out these great designs for the Umeda Rilakkuma Store 6th Anniversary!

Umeda 6th Anniversary - plushies

WOW AND YUM! They’re takoyaki themed! I think Rilakkuma’s ear detail is my favorite part! 1,500円 each.

Excellent! Takoyaki (たこ焼き) is a yummy breaded octopus ball served with sauce and bonito shavings that was first invented in Osaka in 1935!

My family went to Osaka last year and had lots of takoyaki – mmmm! As Umeda is the major business district of Osaka, seems fitting to celebrate the oldest Rilakkuma Store’s 6th anniversary with such a tasty part of its history!

These plushies will be released on September 13 (same day as the Bridal Series). Looks like San-X will be continuing with mini-plushies for its anniversary lines – I have yet to get one of these mini-plushies, but I do have good memories of takoyaki from Osaka, so I might just have to jump for these hehehe.

In other news, I spent my last weekend in Seattle, WA presenting my research at the 29th International Human Papillomavirus Conference! Wow, what an incredible city! I even spied a little Rilakkuma in the artwork at Blue C Sushi!

Blue C Sushi - Rilakkuma

I wish my old phone had a better camera, but here he is! He must be a Fansclub Rilakkuma since he’s getting picked up by a crane!

Hehehe, Rilakkuma follows me around even when I’m out of town! I really love Rilakkuma spotting when I travel!

Rilakkuma Meets Dr. Yellow plushies! + New! Airplane Rilakkuma + Christmas 2014 Net Shop Exclusive!

Hello again! Now that I’m settling back into the swing of things, I’m so happy to share my new Rilakkuma Meets Dr. Yellow plushies!

Rilakkuma Meets Dr. Yellow - full

New additions: Rilakkuma as Dr. Yellow plushie and hugging pillow, and Rilakkuma Store exclusive Dr. Yellow train operator!

Rilakkuma Meets Dr. Yellow - hugging pillow and train plushie

Love these two! The hugging pillow is for my sister, and the smaller plushie was chosen by Simon!

Rilakkuma Meets Dr. Yellow - train side detail

For the train plushie and hugging pillow, lovely decals on the side that make them look like real Dr. Yellows, with the JR logo, too!

Rilakkuma Meets Dr. Yellow - front detail, cars

“T4” stands for the set designation of the Class 923 Dr. Yellow! Hehehe I think these look kind of like faces.

Rilakkuma Meets Dr. Yellow - back

And a shoutout to their series name on their backs!

Rilakkuma Meets Dr. Yellow - store exclusive full

Ready to work! The Rilakkuma Store Exclusive (my pick, hehe): Classic Model 923!

Rilakkuma Meets Dr. Yellow - pouch detail

With a super cute Dr. Yellow car cross-body!

Rilakkuma Meets Dr. Yellow - store exclusive hat detail

A wonderful hat to match his friends’!

Rilakkuma Meets Dr. Yellow - tag art

Tag art! The design is the same for all of them, but their border color is different! The hugging pillow is grey, the Rilakkuma Store Exclusive (with T-shirt) is blue, and the Rilakkuma as Dr. Yellow plushie is white – if you have another item from this set, what color was your tag?

I love the bright yellow, though their color scheme reminds me a lot of a big yellow school bus hehehe.

These fast and furious bears were part of the Rilakkuma Meets Dr. Yellow Series, released in July 2014! As I mentioned in a previous post, the San-X Net Shop crashed when I tried ordering on release day, so my sister was kind enough to order the hugging pillow and train plushie on my behalf when I was in the Dominican Republic! Also, happy to add another Rilakkuma-themed San-X box to my collection too hehehe.

I don’t know, there’s something about these train bears that I’m really drawn to haha; I can’t stop myself from ordering all of them! I never thought of myself as a huge transportation fan, but as it turns out, I think I have the most plushies from the transportation/train series than any other in my collection.

Of course, like these Dr. Yellow bears, the train of Rilakkuma keeps on rolling! Following the transportation theme, check out the new Airplane Series!

Airplane Series - plushies

Looks like they’re flying Rilakkuma Airlines! Plushie for 1,680円, and phone charm plushie for 740円.

Airplane Series - travel items

Of course, travel items for your flight! The design and color scheme reminds me a lot of the Bonjour Series from 2010! Neck pillow for 2,000円, slippers for 1,500円, and eye mask for 1,000円.

Looks like these will be available at the major Japanese airports throughout the year – what a cool collaboration!

My mom usually has a layover on her way to the Philippines, so maybe I’ll ask her to scope these out for me when she makes her next trip!

Looking forward a few months, check out the new Christmas 2014 San-X Net Shop Exclusive – WOW, it’s a Rilakkuma advent calendar!

Christmas 2014 Net Shop Exclusive - both sides

So festive!

Christmas 2014 Net Shop Exclusive - calendar detail

On each day of December, take a new ornament out of its pocket…

Christmas 2014 Net Shop Exclusive - tree full

… and place it anywhere on the tree! And have a fully decorated tree on Christmas Day!

Christmas 2014 Net Shop Exclusive - ornaments

A sample of the plushie ornaments! I don’t really understand that half Rilakkuma in the pile down there – looks like his bottom half is missing!

So clever! Pick a new Rilakkuma plushie ornament for each day in December leading up to Christmas to decorate the tree! Really cute – I love the little snowbears hehehe.

Alternatively, you can attach the little plushie ornaments onto a keychain, and just use them for festive decoration.

My family has an advent calendar, and it’s so fun to use every Christmas!

It seems a little early to think about Christmas for me, but haha who knows? This festive advent calendar costs 18,000円, and the San-X Net Shop is taking pre-orders for this cute set until September 7.

Whew! In other news, today was my first day back in school starting my second year in medical school! We’re jumping right in learning about cardiopulmonary pathophysiology – I hope this year was as good as the last’s!

As always, more bears to post about, which is only bound to get more severe as I have recently took on a paid tutoring job at school haha. Stay tuned!

New! Rilakkuma & SHINKANSEN collaboration + Tokyo Souvenir Series!

Hi everyone! I’m back from the Dominican Republic finally, and whew it is wild being back in the States again!

But wow, lots of cool things have happened while I was out!

First up, a Rilakkuma & SHINKANSEN collaboration!

Rilakkuma & SHINKANSEN - plushies

Rilakkuma turns into a bullet train! Keychain for 1,300円, and plushie for 1,900円.

Rilakkuma & SHINKANSEN - folders and pens

Folders for 300円, and pens for 600円 – cute!!

I picked up the Dr. Yellow version of this plushie, so I’ll probably try to get my hands on this version since I’ve traveled on this Shinkansen before!

The Shinkansen (新幹線) is a network of high-speed railway lines in Japan, and it’s oldest network is the Tōkaidō Shinkansen (東海道新幹線), which celebrates its 50th birthday this year! Happy birthday Tōkaidō Shinkansen!

A first wave of these items will be sold at Tokyo Station beginning August 19, and then these products will eventually be available in Rilakkuma Stores all over Japan starting August 23.

How cool that they are continuing the success of the transportation theme, which was started by the Yamanote Line collaboration (also with a 50th anniversary theme) from last year!

Speaking of the Yamanote Line, a big congratulations to Rilakkuma for winning an award for excellence at the Transit Advertising Awards 2014!

Following the tourism theme once more, check out the new Tokyo Souvenir Rilakkuma!

Tokyo Souvenir Series - plushies

Cute souvenir plushie for 2,000円, and his keychain counterpart for 1,480円 – wow, these bears are getting pricey!

Tokyo Souvenir Series - stickers and folders

What a lovely pattern! Stickers for 300円, and folders for 350円.

In addition to the Tokyo Station Marunouchi Building, this design also features Tokyo Tower (the second tallest structure in Japan behind Skytree) and the Kaminarimon (雷門, an outer entrance gate leading to the Sensō-ji in Asakusa).

I have the Marunouchi Rilakkuma that is really similar in design, but I might pick this one up too for completion’s sake – hard to say no to these camera-wielding Rilakkumas!

Interestingly, these products will be available at all Rilakkuma Stores from August 2 – August 31, but starting from September, only the Rilakkuma in the Tokyo prefecture (Tokyo Station, Tokyo Skytree, Harajuku, Kichijoji) will be stocking these items – which makes some sense since these are supposed to be Tokyo souvenirs anyway hahaha.

Wow, San-X has been really focusing on the tourism and transportation angle recently! In addition to these new designs, San-X is also expanding on their Dr. Yellow line to include socks, chopsticks, and other merchandise now as well – cool!

Rilakkuma Meets Dr. Yellow - chopsticks

Wow, Dr. Yellow-shaped chopsticks for 650円!

I’ve already made quite a few purchases on this line, but super cute nonetheless!

In other news, all of my Space Series Rilakkumas have arrived! I just got back from the Dominican Republic recently, so please be patient as I try to get my bearings back here in the United States!

Fansclub Striped Knit Rilakkuma & Korilakkuma Plushies! + A JAXA Rilakkuma Update!

It’s kind of the opposite of sweater weather around these parts nowadays, but say hello to Striped Knit Rilakkuma & Korilakkuma!

Fansclub Striped Knit Series - full

What a lovely pair! Though it looks like Rilakkuma got a little bored with our photoshoot hehehe

Fansclub Striped Knit Series - Korilakkuma sweater detail

A beautiful pink and white sweater, for a beautiful pink and white Korilakkuma! Also, this is the first time I’ve noticed even the thread for Kobear’s red button is a pretty pink just like her paws, feet, and ears!

Fansclub Striped Knit Series - Rilakkuma sweater detail

Rilakkuma looks so cozy in his orange sweater… so cozy that he sat down and took a nap.

Fansclub Striped Knit Series - tag art

Tag art features a mysteriously sweater-less Rilakkuma and Korilakkuma.

Sleepy Rilakkuma is one of my favorite alternative faces, and I think the knit sweaters are really well done! In fact, I’d love to have one of these sweaters for myself so I can match – Rilakkuma is so stylish!

These snug bears were released as part of the Fansclub Striped Knit Series in in December 2013 – with that season’s polar vortex here in North America, looks like Rilakkuma and friends had the right idea for the peak of sweater season!

I also appreciate the stripes on these sweaters as a foreshadowing to the Stripes Stripes Everyday Series that was released just 3 months later – very clever! The standing Rilakkuma from this series even has the same color scheme!

Enormous thanks to generous reader Trinie for this snug pair of bears! During next winter, they’ll be the most prepared bears in my collection hahaha.

Also a little update on the JAXA x Rilakkuma collaboration! People were curious when this plushie appeared on the San-X Net Shop July lineup with no announcement, then mysteriously disappeared shortly after.

JAXA x Rilakkuma - back

Wow, how did they get him to stand up like that? Engineering at its finest, I suppose. One small stand for bear… one giant leap for bearkind!

Good news is that his page on the Net Shop is back up, and San-X announced a little more information about him!

As it turns out, not only is this plushie a collaboration between the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency and Rilakkuma, but it’s also a special product for the Space Expo 2014: The Great Challenge of NASA · JAXA being held at Makuhari Messe (幕張メッセ) in Chiba – hey Ariel, is this anywhere near you?

As part of Space Expo 2014, this plushie celebrates the rich history of both American (NASA) and Japanese (JAXA) achievements in space exploration and engineering. I love this background, and now knowing more about the context, I think I’m leaning more toward getting this plushie!

In other news, interested in what a Rilakkuma Caravan event looks like? Check out Moriwaki’s video of this year’s Space Series Caravan in Kobe!

Rilakkuma looks so professional in his space suit!

I’ve always wanted to go to one of these events! It’s funny to see all those people rubbing his head when he’s leaving hehehe.

You know, it was watching Rilakkuma videos like this that actually first got me interested in Rilakkuma! Something about him waddling around like that around his adoring fans is really endearing! What’s your favorite Rilakkuma video?

Blue/Green Which Color Do You Like? Rilakkuma Plushie + New! Space Lawson Rilakkuma Plushie +Photos from the Rilakkuma x Tower Records Café!

Say hello to this Which Color Do You Like? Rilakkuma!

In this series, you can pick and flip between two colors – it’s like 2 outfits in 1!

Which Color Do You Like? Series - green full

Are you green with envy?

Which Color Do You Like? Series - disrobed

Laundry day?

Which Color Do You Like? Series - blue full

Flip the hoodie inside-out, and be blue instead!

Which Color Do You Like? Series - blue back

Looking fly from the back, too!

Which Color Do You Like? Series - lanyard detail

One interesting feature is that this Rilakkuma plushie has a lanyard attached by two lobster clasps to the top of his head (directly on the bear, not the hoodie).

Which Color Do You Like? Series - tag art

Tag art makes Rilakkuma the star!

One of my favorite details is the secondary star theme: a bear shape made of gold stars on the front, as well as stars on the back, tag, and lanyard.

In addition to being quite versatile, the hoodie is really well designed too, allowing lots of space for his ears to get in and out. The only major obstacle in changing colors is minding the paper tag.

This two-tone bear was released in May 2013 as part of the Which Color Do You Like? Series, which featured lots of cool and special edition colors in addition to this blue/green combo.

Though this bear was acquired last year when I was in Japan, I somehow neglected to write about this since he’s technically my brother’s Rilakkuma.

Hungry for more Rilakkumas in Space? You’ll love the Space Rilakkuma Lawson Exclusive!

Lawson Space Rilakkuma - 1

Astronaut Rilakkuma in outer space with Kiiroitori!

Lawson Space Rilakkuma - 2

Cute Kumartians with Korilakkuma under a pink bear planet!

Hey, pretty cool! Looks like Kiiroitori gets featured twice, that’s a good deal for him! The little poofs they’re sitting on are a nice touch.

They are each 1,944, and these suave Rilakkuma and Korilakkuma sets are available from HMV online, or through the Loppi system. You can make your pre-order now, but these plushies won’t actually be released until… November 19? Dang, it’s just like the time Ariel (Rilakkuma Desu) waited all that time for her Lawson Rilakkuma Wonderland playset last year, guess they’re doing the same thing again this year.

But in any case, they look really great, and could be worth the wait if you’d like this special set in your collection! I’m passing since I already way overspent on Rilakkuma this month, but let me know if you need help ordering.

In other news, while you’re waiting for your Space Rilakkumas to arrive, check out these photos of the Rilakkuma x Tower Records Café in Shibuya!

Rilakkuma Tower Records Cafe 2014 - 1

Enjoying a refreshing drink, Rilakkuma?

Rilakkuma Tower Records Cafe -2

What a cute welcome display!

Rilakkuma Tower Records Cafe - 7

“May I take your order?”

Rilakkuma Tower Records Cafe - 3

Looks like Rilakkuma would like to take a break at the café, too.

Rilakkuma Tower Records Cafe - 4

The Rilakkuma Factory plushie working hard as a paperweight… or is he pretending to be a cup, too?

Rilakkuma Tower Records Cafe - 5

We’ve seen a sneak peek of the rice Rilakkuma before, but ooh check out the desserts!!

Rilakkuma Tower Records Cafe - 6

Rilakkuma Factory x Tower Records Cafe products!

Whoa, so awesome!! As you may recall, this café is part of this summer’s Tower Records x Rilakkuma collaboration, and features a cute nod to the Rilakkuma Factory Series.

Definitely love this concept! I hope to visit Japan one day in the future when one of these is going on! Dang, I would even want to keep the plastic cup from this collab hahaha.

Reminds a little of the Rilakkuma themed café in Korea, Capi Capi Loom Loom! Oooh this blogger’s post shows that Capi Capi Loom Loom has Which Color Do You Like? Rilakkuma too! :3 Hopefully I can visit that café one day as well!

Also, if you’re curious, I’ve updated the Licensed Rilakkuma Plushie Collection page (so far: Fansclub, HNA, Mister Donut)- which made me realize I still have a ton more to photograph! So the page my reflects all the licensed plushies I’ve featured on my blog so far, but know that there is more to come!

Fansclub Strawberry Rilakkuma Plushies! + JAXA collab, Funny Parts Series, and more!

What better way to celebrate strawberry season than with these awesome Fansclub Strawberry Rilakkuma Plushies!

Fansclub Strawberry Series Part 2 - full

A handsome pair of strawbears

Fansclubs Strawberry Series Part 2 - strawberry crown

A beautiful crown of strawberries and strawberry blossoms for this Rilakkuma!

Fansclub Strawberry Series Part 2 - strawberry hood

And a snug strawberry hood for this bear!

Fansclub Strawberry Series Part 2 - tag art

Tag art featuring Korilakkuma picking up a huge heart-shaped strawberry!

Lovely! And what a dynamic duo! I like to think they became best friends over their mutual interest in strawberry headgear hehehe.

These blissful strawbears were released as part of the “Strawberry Series Part2” by Fansclub in March 2010.

Gigantic thank you to reader Trinie for this seasonally perfect pair of bears! What a splendid set, and they’re joining a strong and diverse community of strawberry bears!

Lots of cool Rilakkuma things to look forward to: check out the JAXA Rilakkuma plushie!

JAXA Rilakkuma - ad

Great jumpsuit!

I missed posting about this guy because I got swept up in the Dr. Yellow line, wow, isn’t he fly? Like the Dr. Yellow series, this cute JAXA worker comes out on July 19, and costs 2,484円.

As Ariel mentioned in her post, JAXA stands for “Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency” and they’re responsible for satellite launches, asteroid exploration and much more! With the Space Series coming out this month, this collaboration fits perfectly!

I actually live really close to the Kennedy Space Center – maybe I need to take my astronaut Rilakkumas for a visit hehehe.

In case you’re still craving more Rilakkuma news, San-X will also be releasing a new line of Rilakkuma merchandise for the Rilakkuma Funny Parts Series!

Funny Parts Series - 1

Wahaha I really like these phone cases, might be something I’d like to invest in (1,200円)

Funny Parts Series - 2

Now you can pretend to be Rilakkuma with the excuse that it’s just a pouch or a towel hahaha

Great concept!

Looks like this theme features our favorite parts from our favorite bears – look forward to this release in August 2014!

I think the Rilakkuma mug is really clever, though I guess you have to hold the mug up to your nose for it to really look like you have a Rilakkuma snout haha.

And for those interested, I’ve finished the first part of my collection page!

Bear Nation - June 2014

Always growing!

Just the San-X and Lawson ones are done right now, but I hope to finish the rest of the plushies over the next week or so.

One my webpage, my running collection will be recorded on the top menu bar (“Collection”), and provides information about series and release date, as well as their original posts on my blog and San-X page. Hope y’all enjoy it!