End of June update!

Hello everyone, and sorry for the long delay since my last post! I’ve been working hard on my neurology clerkship, and got to see all kinds of cool things like angiograms, EEGs, and lumbar punctures. Lots of hard work, but I just took my neurology final yesterday, and next week, I will be starting with my psychiatry clerkship – wow, my third year of medical school is already flying by!

Since we’re gearing up for summer, Rilakkuma fans have a lot to look forward to, as generally Rilakkuma releases come in big waves this season! Here are a few releases I’m looking forward to!

Panda Series - cover

They’re cuddly pandas!

Panda Series - standard

Standard edition: 1,800円 each.

Panda Series - caravan

Caravan edition: 1,500円

Panda Series - store exclusive

Store exclusive edition: 2,100円 each

Panda Series (パンダでごろん) – July 2015

This is the big summer series this year! San-X usually saves the animal themes for the major fall release, but I really love this design! Pandas are so adorable, aren’t they? And I really love the idea of bears dressing up as other bears haha.

In addition to plushies, there’s lots of other cute products in the series, like this super adorable tissue box cover – wow!

I’m definitely getting a plushie from this series, but not sure which one yet! I’m leaning toward the caravan design right now, because I love the panda dango!

Tower Records 2015 - cover

Looks like Rilakkuma’s take on the Rolling Stones!

Tower Records 2015 - standard

Look at these rockstars! I always love a Rilakkuma in a jumpsuit hehehe. Only attainable by lottery after buying another product.

Tower Records 2015 - cafe collaboration

Glad to see that the Riakkuma x Tower Records Cafe is continuing this year too!

Rilakkuma x Tower Records 2015 – July 10

I look forward to this collaboration every year – I love seeing Rilakkuma and friends as rockstars! They look super cool this year with their sunglasses hehehe. I hope they release a playset like last year, too! Seems a little more complicated to get the standard sized collectible plushies this year though, since you have to buy something, then hope you get the plush though a lottery (thanks for the info, sundusts!).

I’m also really happy to see the continuation of the Rilakkuma partnership with Tower Records Cafe, too! There were some pretty amazing photos from last year’s event (check out angelacarpediem’s!), and I hope I get the opportunity to go in the future! I wonder what Rilakkuma-themed meal they’ll be serving this year! Rock on!

Kamiotai Opening - standard

Hooray, celebrating another Rilakkuma Store! 1,900円 each.

Kamiotai Opening - playset

Adorable playset released on the same day at all Rilakkuma Stores! 3,580円.

Kamiotai (上小田井) Rilakkuma Store Plus Sumikko Gurashi Shop Opening – July 3

Wow, another Rilakkuma Store is cropping up in Japan! Cool that it’s another Rilakkuma Store plus Sumikko Gurashi Shop like the one they recently opened in Fujimi. This time it’s in Kamiotai, in Nagoya!

In this series, Rilakkuma and Korilakkuma hold a golden (Kiiroitori) orca whale, a symbol of Nagoya. A very cute and meaningful design, and I love that these bears are sitting down (that Kiiroitori whale must be heavy)!

On the same day of the Kamiotai opening, Rilakkuma Stores across Japan will also be selling a special Rilakkuma playset! Can anyone shed any light on what they’re snacking on? Kinda looks like something dipped in honey.

Hahaha all of these new store openings are gonna make it hard for me to see all of them! When I went to Japan in 2013, I got to visit 4 out of 8, but now there are 11, and probably more to come! So cool to see more and more Rilakkuma Stores crop up!!

Harajuku 3rd Anniversary - cover

Popcorn Rilakkuma ready for the movies! 1,580円 each.

Harajuku 3rd Anniversary – July 4

In addition to a new Rilakkuma Store opening, the Harajuku Rilakkuma is celebrating it’s 3rd anniversary with a popcorn theme during Independence Day here in the US! Rilakkuma seems like the only one who avoided being actually inside a popcorn bucket himself haha. I like that they’ve been going with food themes for recent anniversary plushes :D

Any Rilakkuma designs catching your eye? I’ve been eying the Mister Donut beach towel promotion recently, and might pick up the blue design since there are a ton of affordable ones on auction right now!

The Tale of Four Rilakkuma Stores!

Hello! I’m more than halfway through my Japan trip and I finally have time to sit and blog for a bit about what’s happened so far!

Thank you everyone for your well wishes – we arrived safe and sound at Tokyo!

The plane was really nice – I had so much space that my Rilakkuma even had a platform to himself hahaha

Rilakkuma on Airplane - window view

Descent into Tokyo!

Anyway, for the first two nights, we were in Tokyo, just minutes away from Tokyo Station!

We were kind of in a hurry to get to dinner rather late at night, so we didn’t get to shop but! we did get to check out the Tokyo Station Rilakkuma Store! Ariel already made a post on this store recently, but it’s really quite incredible to see a Rilakkuma Store in person!

Tokyo Station Rilakkuma Store - front

Will shop here for real soon!

We’re going back to the Tokyo Station area for a day before we leave Japan, so I will be sure to shop there for real next time!

The next day, we went to the Tokyo Skytree Rilakkuma Store!

Tokyo Skytree Rilakkuma Store - front

I got one of those Skytree plushies with all three of the Rilakkuma crew!

Tokyo Skytree Rilakkuma Store - cashier

Paying the Rilakkuma Store workers’ salaries in one fell swoop.

This was the first time we got to spend a great deal of time at the Rilakkuma Store. They had a bunch of Skytree specials (though the Tokyo Station one also sold a few Skytree plushies), and I feel like I circled the store over 20 times analyzing everything before paying and leaving.

I’ll post close-ups of what I bought at a later post (they’re all stowed away in luggage right now booo), but here’s the list of the Skytree haul:

The small 22cm watermelon anniversary plushies were sold out, but there was no shortage of the XL version – I wonder why?

Strangely enough, there were even Halloween 2012 Kiiroitoris still in stock?? Hmmm…

Whew! Then the next day, we ran over to the Harajuku Rilakkuma Store!

Harajuku Rilakkuma Store - front

It’s the Rilakkuma half of the floor! I love how the entrances to each Rilakkuma store is slightly different.

Harajuku Rilakkuma Store - side Korilakkuma

Look who’s hiding on the side!!

Here at Kiddyland, half of the fourth floor is devoted to Rilakkuma! Even the bathroom is painted with a Rilakkuma theme haha

The plushie haul from Harajuku:

They’re gearing up for their anniversary on the 29th – so sad I’ll miss it!!

Finally, on our way out of Osaka, we stopped by the Umeda Rilakkuma Store!

Umeda Rilakkuma Store - front

Hello, Rilakkuma!

Even more plushies to be bought here!

I didn’t even know what the Holiday collab was, or what Holiday even is but I snagged one anyway since I was already there. Turns out it’s some clothing brand haha, so cute!!

I was really shocked to see that they had some of the Fukuoka 3rd Anniversary plushies there (I wasn’t even in Fukuoka!) – guess they had a few left over? I always assumed the anniversary plushies flew off the shelves like hotcakes.

There was also a healthy stock of Rilakkuma apparel that the other branches I visited didn’t have, so my family stocked up on some Rilakkuma shorts haha.

Whew! That’s 4 out of 8 Rilakkuma Stores! I know during the next trip, I’ll have to stop by the Fukuoka, Sapporo, Sendai, and Kichijoji branches!!

I’ll have to write more when I finally get the time to photograph each of them, but that’s all for now!!

All’s quiet on the Rilakkuma front until the Wonderland release, I’m guessing!