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Rilakkuma™ Writing + Plush Set Review by Debra Brinkman

Aliquantum International Inc.
2009 South Parco Ave.
Ontario, California 91761

A few years ago, my daughter studied Japan for a badge in American Heritage Girls. One of the things the girls studied was toys and popular culture. One of the leaders was a fan of Japanese characters like Hello Kitty, so the kids learned a bit about that.

Around the time they were studying this, some new characters were becoming the new hits in Japan. Rilakkuma was one of those characters. Its name is a combination of the words “relax” and “bear.”

I did not know anything about the San-X characters when we were offered this review, but we did recognize some of them from that study.

This Rilakkuma Writing + Plush Set includes several character items. The main one is a plush bear, around six inches tall. The set also includes a pencil pouch, two pencils, a ballpoint pen and mechanical pencil set, a six-inch ruler, and a pencil sharpener. All these items feature Rilakkuma, and most also include other friends.

The plush is well-constructed and incredibly soft. My daughter used a seam ripper to remove the cookie, and that did work quite well. I love the little zipper on the back, as it is a cute touch.

The pencil pouch is made of yellow and white vinyl, with the characters all over it. The inside is lined in a light pink fabric with Rilakkuma written all over. The outside wipes clean easily. The zipper pull also says Rilakkuma, and it is sturdy and works well to open and close the pouch.

The pencils, pen, and mechanical pencil all work quite well. We are trying to figure out what size lead is used in the mechanical pencil so that we can refill that. The pencil sharpener works well and does not leave pencil shavings everywhere.

My daughter loved all of it at once, aside from not wanting the bear to always have a cookie. However, in the past few weeks, we have hit that awkward stage where she worries about looking childish. She is not as happy with the pencil pouch now and has been looking to buy a new one. She has not had any luck. When she finds a more mature design, it is not a high enough quality. She does not want to struggle with inferior zippers.

The rest of the set is still completely acceptable to her, and I expect that in another few months, she will be over her current hang-up with “cute kid” stuff.

Overall, this is nice quality, and it is cute without being over-the-top cute.

-Product review by Debra Brinkman, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, August 2019