I had a extra axe just laying about, so I gave it to my first peasant here. Since the axe is uncommon, I worked it into this figure's character background, which is also uncommon. He's a peasant who, when he was young ran away from home to become a pirate, smuggling contraband to Osaka (or some such jazz.)
His stint on the waters was short, but among his meager booty were this large axe and a striped shirt he got to be showy. Since leaving work as a pirate, he has hit the roads, but he has little money left over to stay at inns. So he had made himself a poor but functional tatami mat, which he keeps rolled up and slung over his back.
The only conversion I did to the second figure was adding a beard and a straw hat. I gave him gray hair, and since he is older, I have dubbed him Uncle Gon, one of the characters from the book, "Musashi," about the life of Miyamoto Musashi.
I have the two ninja, the samurai and the ronin left yet to do. These paint up faster than I remember, so I may get to them relatively soon.