2014 Nickelodeon Holiday IDs

In early November I had the pleasure of knitting characters and props for Nickelodeon for the second year in a row! (This is the project that took over my life and my desk for a couple of weeks.) The resulting animated IDs are now airing on the network during commercial breaks, so you’ll probably catch one if you tune in this month.

Here’s a reel of all the new IDs.

Anna Hrachovec for Nickelodeon: Holiday 2014 IDs from Anna Hrachovec on Vimeo.

I didn’t participate in the animating process this time, but of course the Nick promotions team did an excellent job without me.

The guys you see in the first two animations are SwaySway and Buhdeuce from the show Breadwinners, which is about ducks who deliver bread in a flying rocket van. They’re your typical tiny mochi size.

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The biggest challenge among all the little characters and props was the arcade that the Breadwinners play. It had to have structure, some design details, and also a way for the screen to change colors as if it’s switching on. And it had to be pretty small, so that tiny SwaySway and tiny Buhdeuce could walk up to it and play it. It was a little bit helpful that I had designed a knitted arcade earlier this year, so I knew what kind of shaping I wanted to get, but Quarters would be skyscraper-sized to these characters.

My first version was really tiny and was close to the shape I wanted, but it lacked the structure that it needed (since it was just filled with stuffing).

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So for my next version, I started by putting together a styrofoam base that was bigger and more or less arcade-shaped.

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It’s a bit big for tiny SwaySway, but close enough to the right scale for the purposes of a cute stop-motion animation.

Then I did some measuring and swatching, then some more measuring and swatching. Once I had measured and swatched enough, I proceeded to knit the covering flat so that I could seam it onto the styrofoam. An interesting moment was trying to shave down the styrofoam just the right amount while the knitted covering was on so that there would be enough room for the screen to lie flat. It was finished in an evening, because it had to be!

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(I couldn’t stomach the thought of more duplicate stitch for a few days after!)

So that’s a little look into the process that went into my portion of this project.

Since working with Nick two years in a row and also picking up a few other commercial projects in the meantime, I’m happy to find that I indeed love working with someone else’s creative vision and also creating my interpretation of existing characters. I hope I get to do more!

Big thank-yous go to Matthew Duntemann at Nick and to my agent Koko for making this project happen.

If you’d like to see more, you can find last year’s animations (which include more Mochimochi Land creatures) here.

And just in case anyone is wondering, unfortunately I can’t make patterns available for any of the Nick characters or props. (Although you’re welcome to use my versions as inspiration for your own personal-use projects!)

Winners of the 2014 Mochimochi Photo + Video Contest

The results are in! We are so excited to announce the winners of the 8th Annual Mochimochi Photo + Video Contest today! If you entered at all, of course, you’re a winner in the game of life, because you went out of your way to use your creativity to make something beautiful (or cute and silly) and share it with the world. As Mochimochi Land grows and changes, it’s the original ideas that you all put into it that are the single biggest source of inspiration to me. Thank you!

Big thanks are also in order for our sponsors, Knit Picks and Milk+Honey, for providing super prizes this year. And thank you to my lovely mother-in-law, Bonney, for opening up her stash for additional prizes!

Now for the winners of the photo category!

In third place is the adorable Snow Turtle! by ForeverWrens.

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ForeverWrens wins a $10 gift certificate to Knit Picks, a gift bag from Milk+Honey, a $10 gift card to Mochimochi Land, plus a bag and Howdie Doody knitting kit from Bonney Teti’s World’s Biggest Yarn Stash in Wilmot, New Hampshire!

In second place is the incredible Beauty and the Beast by Knit Mermaid.

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Knit Mermaid wins a $10 gift certificate to Knit Picks, a gift bag and an additional lotion bar from Milk+Honey, a $10 gift card to Mochimochi Land, plus vintage patterns and kits and more from Bonney!

And our top photo winner is… Fancy Seeing You Here by Molly.

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Molly wins a Candy Rainbow Yarn Sampler from Knit Picks, a gift bag and two additional lotion bars from Milk+Honey, a $20 gift card to Mochimochi Land, and a whole slew of vintage patterns and kits and more from Bonney!

And finally, we have a video winner to announce. Let me tell you, we were so excited about the video entries we received (and I will be posting more of them here soon). But one video stood out as a clear winner for its story, its originality, and its execution. It’s By a Thread by juleenbean.

Amazing, right? juleenbean wins everyone’s adoration plus 10 tiny mochi kits!

Congratulations to these very clever knitters! And that wraps up the 2014 Mochimochi Photo + Video Contest—thank you again to all who participated!

Feeling inspired? It’s not too early to enter next year’s contest! All photos added to the Mochimochi Friends Flickr group will automatically be entered in the 2015 Mochimochi Photo Contest. And we’ll probably also bring back our springtime photo series contest, so keep an eye out for that in a few months.

Thank You for Voting!

Update: Congratulations to the winners!

Thank you to the 677 people who cast their votes on the Mochimochi Photo Contest finalists! While we’re tabulating the results, let’s have another look at the fantastic finalist photos.

The Dragon Awakes by Emma Heasman-Hunt

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Gnome Nirvana by Suzy Gill-Boucher

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Fraidysaurus by Patelyne

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Chicken Dim Sum by Theresa Tan

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Hello Kitty’s 40th Anniversary by Wooly Brain

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Beauty and the Beast by Knit Mermaid

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How Many Elephants Does It Take to Change a Lightbulb? by ella.millberg

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Santa Snow Ride by photographs memories

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Teeny Dancers by The Happy Cupcake

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Fancy Seeing You Here by Paul Mozell

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Snow Turtle! by ForeverWrens

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Tiny Bird, Kale Next by Hannah Kaminsky

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If Only They Made Them This Big!!! by huey Li

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Mochimochi Nudist Gnome by lucytmarshall

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Snowmen Just Wanted to Have Some Fun by Joan

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Congrats to all of these knitters for making it to the finals! Check back soon for the top three winners and also our exciting video category winner!

Photo Contest ’14: The Big Vote!

Update: Congratulations to the winners!

It’s voting day in Mochimochi Land! After much deliberation, John and I have selected 15 finalists from the hundreds of photos entered in the 8th Annual Mochimochi Photo Contest.

Presenting your top 15 photos!

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Which of these, in your opinion, are the cutest, funniest, most original photos of Mochimochi toys? Cast your ballot below! To help make things fair, we’re asking that everyone please vote only one time, but PLEASE VOTE FOR AT LEAST TWO PHOTOS. You can vote for even moreā€”as many as you like!

The poll will be open through this weekend, and we’ll announce the top three winners, along with the top video winner (selected by us), on Tuesday, December 16th. Be sure to return for the results!

[POLL CLOSED]

Happy Holidays from Nickelodeon + Mochimochi Land!

In 2013 I got to work with Nickelodeon on animated holiday IDs using Mochimochi Land creatures and some mochi-fied Nick characters. I’m happy to say that the animations are back on this month, and there are new ones too! I’ll share more soon, but you can also tune in to Nickelodeon to catch them on air.

Photo Contest ’14: Honorable Mentions

Over the weekend John and I spent a good while looking at all the delightful photos and videos you submitted to the 8th Annual Mochimochi Photo Contest. It’s hard work, but we’re the lucky someones who must do it!

We’re going to do things slightly different than in previous years because of our new video category: today we’re revealing the Honorable Mentions in the photo portion of our contest, and later this week we’ll go straight into voting on the finalists. (No semifinalist round this year). We’ll announce the winning photos and winning video (which John and I will select ourselves) at the same time, then after the winners are announced, we’ll feature the rest of the video entries for everyone to see.

So without further ado, it’s our honor to present the Honorable Mentions! These photos didn’t quite make it into our finalist group, but we were tickled by them nonetheless and we’re exited to feature them here. See the full images close up after the jump!

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More >

Heather’s Tiny Nativity

The Christmas crafts continue today with this sweet tiny nativity made by Heather (Muppetfeet on Ravelry).

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On the project page, Heather says that the characters were all based on the Tiny Nun pattern (from the Tiny People collection). That just goes to show how much of a difference an embroidered beard can make!

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I also really like the effect of the I-cord hands holding beads as magi gifts. And the adorable tiny donkey (which appears to be the knitter’s design).

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From Heather’s page:

Inspired by the lovely folks at First Church Somerville, including my model for the Wise Drag Queen, Miss Serenity Jones.

I knew this was a special project when I spotted it on Ravelry! Also inspiring: the rainbow baby Jesus.

Thank you to Heather for sharing with us!

And to those of you anxiously awaiting photo + video contest results, please check back Monday, when we’ll reveal the Honorable Mentions!

Miriam Felton’s Tiny Mochi Advent Calendar

Earlier this year I started noticing a whole lot of tiny mochis popping up in knitwear designer Miriam Felton’s Instagram feed…

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It turns out that she was knitting them for a tiny mochi advent calendar for her sister’s family!

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How perfect are those little numbered drawers, right? The only hard part might be picking what goes in each drawer. But Miriam had a plan, as she described in her Instagram caption:

My favorite parts: It starts with the Christmas Tree since they put their tree up on Dec. 1 (sister’s birthday), the cat follows the mouse, then Santa follows the reindeer and Santa is on the 24th.

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I bet someone is having a fun December so far with this! Of course, the mochis have loops attached to them for hanging on the tree.

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Thank you to Miriam for sharing this project and for taking such great photos! If you’re not familiar with Miriam’s beautiful design work, be sure to check her blog and patterns at her website. Also, I just saw that Miriam will be at Knit 1 in Chicago for a meet-and-greet on December 8th!