Traditional style with an anime twist.

One of the biggest characters Studio Ghibli has ever created, both in terms of popularity and size, is Totoro from the 1988 film My Neighbour Totoro.

The character is instantly recognisable by its large, rounded appearance, making it perfect for all sorts of cute and cuddly goods, and the latest range from the studio is a great example of that, with Totoro bringing its charm to a range of Japanese-style bags.

▼ The first product in the collection is the My Neighbour Totoro Shingen Bag.

“Shingen bags” are large cloth bags with rounded corners, string closures and stiff bottoms, and they’ve been popular in Japan since the beginning of the 20th century. Its shape is a good fit for Totoro, whose eyes, ears and belly add an anime twist to the shingen bag, complete with fabric that’s said to have “a Japanese-style feel”.

These types of bags are commonly worn with yukata (summer kimono), and the pattern on the inner fabric is designed to pair well with other traditional yukata accessories.

▼ Adding to the sweetness of the design is a fabric leaf and bell, which hangs off the drawstring as a nod to Totoro’s forest home.

Next up, we have a couple of My Neighbour Totoro Gamaguchi bags, with one featuring the largest Totoro from the movie…

▼ …and the other featuring a medium Totoro.

“Gamaguchi” (literally “toad’s mouth”), gets its name from the fact that the purse-like metal clasp creates a large opening in the pouch that resembles the mouth of a toad, a creature that’s believed to attract wealth according to local folklore.

▼ The likeness to a toad’s mouth becomes evident when the pouches are opened.

▼ Both pouches feature a similar lined pattern on the inner fabric…

▼ …and the same adorable leaf charm with bell.

The final two items in the range are the My Neighbour Totoro Mini Pouches, which also feature the main Totoro character…

▼ …and the blue medium Totoro.

Inside, the fabric matches the ones on the other bags, aligning them perfectly with the rest of the collection.

▼ And yes, these ones come with a bell and leaf charm as well.

These bags have been restocked at Studio Ghibli’s Donguri Kyowakoku retail store chain and online (links below), but as always, they’re only available in limited numbers while stocks last. The shingen and gamaguchi bags are priced at 3,300 yen (US$19.80), while the mini pouches retail for 1,980 yen. They’re a great partner for the pink-hued Totoro mini pouch and gamaguchi bags released during sakura season, and if you’re lucky enough to own a Totoro yukata, these will be the perfect accessory to complete your outfit at this year’s summer festivals!

Source: Donguri Kyowakoku
Top image: Donguri Kyowakoku
Insert images: Donguri Kyowakoku (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
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