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!

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!

Lawson Vegetable Rilakkuma, Korilakkuma, and Kiiroitori Plushies! Cat Series LEAK + Space Rilakkuma Caravan news and more!

Have you been eating healthy lately? Well if you need a little health food inspiration, check out these Vegetable Rilakkuma plushies!

Lawson Vegetable Series - full

So cute in their own produce crates!! Dang, it’s good to see Korilakkuma in a pair of shorts – usually it’s Rilakkuma hahaha.

Lawson Vegetable Series - top view

Wheee look how adorable Rilakkuma’s little carrot shoes are!! :D

Lawson Vegetable Series - Kii detail

Along with holding the vegetable they’re dressed as, they are also accompanied by an additional veggie in the crate that’s another costume in the series: cabbage for Rilakkuma, tomato for Korilakkuma, and carrot for Kiiroitori!

Lawson Vegetable Series - tag art

Tag art that mimics produce price tags! Each tag has the portrait of the character, and the veggie! These tags are held by a standard plastic tag ring in the back corner of the crate.

I really love them! They’re so great in their little produce boxes, and they certainly make me hungry just looking at them mmmmm

This healthy set of bears is part of the Lawson x Rilakkuma Vegetable Series released March 2014 – the complete set includes another 3 plushies: Rilakkuma cabbage, Korilakkuma tomato, and Kiiroitori green pepper – yum!

Also exciting news rolling in about the next leaked series after the Space Series, it’s the Cat Series!

Cat Series - ad standard

Roar!! Rilakkuma looks a lot like the Year of the Tiger series from 2010! And Kiiroitori is a Calico cat – did you know all Calico cats are female?

Cat Series - ad special

And look at these alternative designs – bears as cats you can fit in the palm of your hand, and ones big enough to hug!

Cat Series - ad illustration

And of course, a beautiful illustration to go with the products! I love the little non-costumed kitty they’re with, too!

Cat Series - taiyaki ad

Yum!! Looks like Cat Rilakkuma loves taiyaki!

Meow what a cool concept! Looks like San-X is sticking to animal suits for their fall series as they’ve been doing for the past few years. No official dates yet, but I would estimate October based on the pattern of previous years? San-X usually gives us 3 months to recuperate after the yearly July wave haha. I’ll keep you updated when San-X starts to release official news updates!

Thanks so much to reader Jennifer for the tip!! I’m actually pretty severely allergic to cats, so it’s probably fitting that the main cat I’d be able to interact with in person is a Rilakkuma cat hahaha.

And since it looks like Cat Rilakkuma loves to eat taiyaki (鯛焼き), a Japanese sea bream-shaped pastry dessert with yummy filling, we’d probably make fast friends! From the looks of it, Rilakkuma likes the chocolate-filled ones, just like me hehehe. I’ll probably try to pick up at least one item from this series, and I’m hoping one of the caravan or store exclusive plushies features taiyaki!! :)

Well, the Rilakkuma rains don’t show signs of stopping haha, as even more waves of news follow the Space Rilakkuma announcement from last week! Check out the Space Rilakkuma Caravan design!

Space Rilakkuma Caravan - ad

Whoa, that lining is out of this world! ;)

How special! Rilakkuma’s pose reminds me a lot of the Skytree set from 2012! And super lovely touch that Rilakkuma is holding the same plush bear planet that the costume bearsuits in the caravan will be holding as well!

This cosmic caravan will be going from July 12 to August 31 in various locations all across Japan, and this caravan exclusive plushie will be 1,780円.

Out of the blue, San-X also announced a mobile site exclusive Happy Natural Time playset!

Happy Natural Time Mobile Site Exclusive Playset - ad

Wow, look at all the different pies!

Whaaaat – ! I totally would’ve gotten this set if it were released with the rest of the Happy Natural Time series last year! They do look so cute eating their pies haha.

The whole set is 6,800円 – dang, bad timing for me with all of the other releases going on now, but maybe I’ll try looking for it again when the July buzz dies down a little.

And finally, to come full circle with the food theme I began this post with, San-X also released more merchandise with the Purple Yam and Green Bean pattern!

Green Bean and Purple Yam Pattern - ad

Perfect colors for the summer!

Yum! Recall that the first iteration of this purple yam and green bean pattern was back in May, and featured fans and smartphone cleaners – glad to see they expanded it into pouches and kitchenware! A pretty fitting application for this pattern, I think!

Importantly, haha, it’s great to see that Rilakkuma eats a balanced diet with lots of vegatables! Who knew Rilakkuma could become my food inspiration hahaha

Flower Bouquet Korilakkuma!

Wow, it’s getting warmer here and finally feeling like spring!

On that note, check out this cute Flower Bouquet Korilakkuma!

Flower Bouquet Korilakkuma - full

Perfect for springtime!

Flower Bouquet Korilakkuma - flower detail

What a beautiful bouquet!

Flower Bouquet Korilakkuma - tag art

Tag art! Wow, this was back when Green Camel was all over Rilakkuma goods!

Adorable! And really so fitting for the season! She was really quite perfect for Valentine’s Day this past weekend!

This elegant plushie was released by Fansclub back in 2006 – wow, what a long time ago! What’s so special about this plushies is that the inside of the tag even has a little color chart of what the flower colors represent: since this bouquet is orange, this Korilakkuma represents cheerfulness – hooray! Pretty accurate, I think – receiving this Korilakkuma certainly made me cheerful!

Endless thanks again to Trinie, who so kindly sent this cheerful springtime Korilakkuma – she’s so pretty and a perfect fit! <3

In other news, the Rilakkuma world has been abuzz with great new things too!

Check out the new Lawson x Rilakkuma collaboration: the Vegetable Series!

Vegetable Series - Rilakkuma

Carrot and Cabbage Rilakkuma!

Vegetable Series - Korilakkuma

Tomato and Eggplant Korilakkuma!

Vegetable Series - Kiiroitori

Onion and Green Pepper Kiiroitori!

I love these! When have I disliked a Rilakkuma food theme though, hahaha. The little crates are so cute, and I do like how each of them have other veggies in their crates too (though I think tomatoes are technically fruits? hahahaha).

The whole set of 6 is 9135円 (tax included) online, but I believe Lawson stores will be selling them individually at 1450円 (tax not included), too, starting March 14. I might try to get my hands on 3 of them (1 of each), maybe the carrot, eggplant, & onion, but haven’t been able to decide yet – what do you all think? I really love this set a ton!

Lawson is also releasing a bunch more goods like nap cushions, phone cases, and bags that go along with the newest Stripes Stripes Everyday Series too, but I think the veggies are really the ones I’m personally looking out for!

And hey, Kiiroitori is getting a special set all for itself this spring, too!

Kiiroitori Set - banner

So many Kii’s!

Kiiroitori Set - set

And a bunch more!

Even though I’m a Rilakkuma fan through and through, I love that Kiiroitori is getting some solo time!

The plushie and set are expected to come out sometime in mid-April, and they will also be releasing some housewares as lottery prizes at Lawson at the end of March – how special!

I do love the motif of Kiiroitori wearing the Rilakkuma ears hahaha it reminds me a lot of the Kiiroitori from the I Love Rilakkuma Series from 2011 – and it looks like they’re still continuing the 10th anniversary theme with Kiiroitori’s coins! Speaking of which…

Attentive reader Jennifer noticed a super-cute Sumikko Gurashi x Rilakkuma crossover in one of the latest San-X Fan Club books!

Sumikko Gurashi x Rilakkuma - 10th Anniversary

Shirokuma as Rilakkuma, Neko and Tonkatsu as Korilakkuma, & hahahaha Penguin as Kiiroitori!

Wow, how amazing is that! Two of my favorite series, celebrating together :D Great find, Jennifer!

Last but not least, check out this great footage of the Yamanote Line x Rilakkuma model train!

Wow, it looks so realistic, and it’s 1/150 of the actual size – incredible!

This cute model train set is made by Kato Models, and celebrates the Yamanote Line x Rilakkuma collab from back in the summer of 2013! The 11 car set is a cool 30,450円  and the 3 car set is 12,600円 (tax included), but it’s certainly worth it for a model train enthusiast with an eye for stunning detail and Rilakkuma :D

Anyway, I’m so glad to be done with exams for now! It’s so nice to be back and active in the Rilakkuma world, especially since the weather is getting sunnier and sunnier :) I thought the exam went well, but grades haven’t come out yet, so we’ll just have to see! Now onto the next module of immunology and microbiology :O

Would love to hear what you think about the many new developments in the Rilakkuma world recently! I hope everyone’s local weather is warming up, too!

ETA (2/19): The Fukuoka 4th Anniversary Plushies have been announced!

Fukuoka PARCO 4th Anniversary - announcement

I didn’t even know they went to school…

Looks like they’re graduation themed, and they’ll be available at Rilakkuma Stores everywhere on March 15 for 1,300円 each. What a cute surprise! I really love the cherry blossom petal motif on their tails as well as the border on the ad hahaha

Lawson Aloha Rilakkuma Playset!

Wah, I can’t believe I ordered this back in March and I’m just now photographing it haha – though in my defense, it only arrived after I came back from Asia.

Anyway, here it is, at long last: the Lawson x Aloha Rilakkuma Playset!

Rilakkuma x Lawson - Aloha Rilakkuma - full

Everyone’s going shopping!

Rilakkuma x Lawson - Aloha Rilakkuma - Rilakkuma, cart, and lei

Rilakkuma and his undetachable cart! His flower lei is removable though.

Rilakkuma x Lawson - Aloha Rilakkuma - Korilakkuma

This Korilakkuma is so wild to me haha because she’s proportionally much smaller than the Rilakkuma, like she could be Rilakkuma’s plushie… and she herself is holding an Aloha Rilakkuma plushie? Hahahaha I guess it’s cool that Korilakkuma goes shopping for Rilakkuma plushies just like we do.

Rilakkuma x Lawson - Aloha Rilakkuma - Kiiroitori

Eeee this Kiiroitori is so cute and small! And he bears a striking resemblance to the Kiiroitori from the Happiness series (2007) – I guess Kiiroitori has always been in charge of holding the money!

Rilakkuma x Lawson - Aloha Rilakkuma - items

My favorite details: Hawaii coffee, Rilakkuma cookies, and a Kiiroitori honeypot with a Lawson bag to take them home in!

Lawson/HMV started taking pre-orders for this set way back in February of this year – wow that was a long time ago! They sold out before the pre-order deadline of April 15, and were finally sent out in mid-June!

I actually haven’t finished covering all the cool Rilakkuma things my dad bought in Japan, so here’s another entry that jives with today’s Aloha Rilakkuma theme!

Kabaya Aloha Rilakkuma - front

I assembled this one myself!

Kabaya Aloha Rilakkuma - top

Well assembly is pretty easy – just 2 stickers for the background and the ground, and then fitting the 2 yellow boards and the figurines in the right spot!

My family really likes the guitar-playing Rilakkuma because there’s an old photo of my dad playing the guitar in exactly the same pose and expression hahaha so it’s kind of like seeing my dad in bear form.

This figurine set was made by Kabaya under domestic license – Kabaya seems to be mostly a sweets company, which makes sense (I guess) because this set also inexplicably came with an unmarked bag of candy inside (what).

This set is pretty cool because there’s a little link at the bottom so that you can connect it to other figures like it! Cool idea! I wonder if my dad will collect any more…

Anyway, just as a heads up, I’m starting medical school on August 5 – I really have no idea how much free time I’ll have (if any, yikes), but I’ll try to still keep posting when I can because surprisingly, Rilakkuma mania actually keeps me grounded and focused hahaha. I mean, Mary makes it work as a doctor AND a mom AND collecting way more than just Rilakkumas so we’ll see how well I can do haha

Finalizing my trip to Japan!

So my parents have finalized our hotels and tours and everything for our first real visit to Japan! We’ve been in Japanese airports so many times for connecting flights, but have never actually seen the country – I’m so excited!

Here’s our schedule (all in June):

20: Arriving!
21: Tokyo (Skytree area)
22: Tokyo (Harajuku + Kiddyland) + Osaka
23: Kyoto
24: Kyoto
25: Nara
26: Tokyo again (for a last minute Rilakkuma Store run?)
27: Leaving :[

Wow, that makes 3 opportunities to visit 3 different Rilakkuma stores (Skytree, Kiddyland, Tokyo Station)! Don’t know if I’ll actually get to all of those (since it’s a family vacation with my parents), but it’s nice to know that I’ll be so close to Rilakkuma stores during my trip haha. (ETA: forgot that the Umeda Rilakkuma Store is in Osaka – that makes 4!!)

After that, it’s family time in the Philippines for a few more weeks! Fun for me, but not too much Rilakkuma related news on that front haha.

SAD NEWS THOUGH: this schedule means I will just barely miss the release of Harajuku 1st Anniversary and Comics Series plushies that come out on the 29th! Noooo!

Harajuku 1st Anniversary - full

Mmmm crepes!

Comics Series - full

I want a matching hoodie!

I’m pre-ordering them though, so I’ll get them eventually, but I won’t get to experience the Rilakkuma release day madness in person – which could be a blessing haha, but I’d like to experience it one time just to know what my sellers have to go through for me haha.

BUT GREAT NEWS: my sister earned an Aloha Rilakkuma plate from Lawson!

Rilakkuma x Lawson - Aloha Rilakkuma - plate

Wow, so HQ!

As I mentioned before, my sister was participating in a Rilakkuma x Lawson campaign where you could collect stickers from purchases and redeem them for prizes – the campaign recently ended on the 3rd.

Though she was originally aiming for the bag (20 stickers), with the help of her classmates, she was able to collect 30 for the plate in less than 2 weeks! WOW!

Thanks a bunch to Liemzie and Ariel for helping me and my sister decode this campaign haha!

You can read more details and see more photos of my sister’s win at her blog here! Yay!

Rilakkuma x Lawson Keychain!

Hey, look what my sister picked up in Japan: it’s a Rilakkuma x Lawson keychain!

Rilakkuma x Lawson - shopping basket keychain

Looks like he’s holding an onigiri – yum!

This guy is part of a mini-set that came out back in April – with Rilakkuma and friends hanging out in special Rilakkuma 10th anniversary Lawson shopping baskets! Cute!

Still waiting for the Rilakkuma x Lawson Aloha Rilakkuma plushie, which is supposed to be released in late June – I feel like I pre-ordered it AGES ago!

Also, as I mentioned before, my sister is in Japan right now, and she’s spied some more Rilakkuma at Lawson!

Lawson has an ongoing campaign featuring the Aloha Rilakkuma series where you collect stickers for prizes: Liemzie (Tea Two Sugars Please) and Ariel (Rilakkuma Desu) have posted about this campaign already – and thank goodness for those posts because otherwise we would have no idea what was going on with these stickers haha.

Rilakkuma x Lawson - Cheese Hamburger

“Cheese Hamburger”

Rilakkuma x Lawson - Teriyaki Burger

One of my sister’s favorites: Teriyaki Hamburger

Rilakkuma x Lawson - Cheese Bread

Cheese Bread

Just so you can be reminded of Rilakkuma all the time, even when you eat!

My sister’s running her own blog on her experience, so I’ll try not to steal too much of her thunder, just wanted to share some of her awesome Rilakkuma-centric photos!

I think my sister is aiming for the bag (20 stickers), but we’ll see how much she can collect before the campaign ends in June – what a great customer loyalty campaign haha.