Knitterj’s Mother’s Day Bento

This is too cute: Jan (knitterj on Ravelry) whipped up this scrumptious Mother’s Day bento to give to her sushi-loving mom this Sunday!


So much better than flowers, right moms? The plastic grass tucked in around the sides really makes it for me.

You can find the patterns in the Tiny Sushi Bar Set (also available on Ravelry).

An early Happy Mother’s Day to all you moms out there! I’m headed to Oklahoma this weekend so I can spend the day with mine.

Adventures in Mochimochi Land Preview: The Underwater Election

It’s just about one month until the release of my new combo storybook and pattern book, Adventures in Mochimochi Land!

Last month I shared a preview of the first story in the book, The Hungry Donut. And today I’m sharing a peek into the second story in the book, The Underwater Election. Alternative title: Tiny Mochis Under the Sea!


The protagonists of this story, Bubbles the dolphin and Gary the crab, are political rivals, vying for control over a precious new resource they helped discover.


(I used Tosh Merino Light yarn for the first time to make these guys. I was looking for a yarn that would be bright and richly hued and evoke life underwater—I think it really did the trick!)

I’ll leave the nature of the precious resource as a surprise for the book, but rest assured that all kinds of silly political stunts ensue. Gary, for example, serves as guest judge in local a beauty pageant…


And Bubbles insists on doing the honors at a ribbon cutting ceremony for a new sandcastle development.


Something unexpected happens with the election results, of course, but not before a heated debate complete with mudslinging!


Each of the stories in this book came with its own unique challenges, from the writing to the photography. With this story, a big challenge was figuring out how to represent Mochimochi Land underwater, something I hadn’t really done before. I wasn’t sure how we would do it until the last minute when it was time for the photo shoot! But the local craft store came through with sparkly fabric for the background,


(Ironed directly on the wall for maximum wrinkle-free sparkly-ness…)

Some lucky finds like seaweed-shaped pipe cleaners,


And yarn that looked amazingly like coral!


Speaking of which, in the haste of doing the photo shoot last year, I failed to make note of which novelty yarns we used to make the coral and other cool seaweed-looking stuff that appear in the images. If anyone knows what they’re looking at, please share in the comments!

I almost forgot the last big challenge of all of these underwater photos: erasing all of those pesky sticks holding everyone afloat!


All I can say is thank goodness for Photoshop and for a photographer who really knows how to use it.

Adventures in Mochimochi Land is coming out June 9th! It’s now available for preorder from Amazon, from Barnes & Noble, and from Powells, among other places. Signed copies are also available for preorder from me in the Mochimochi Shop. Or if you have a local bookstore or yarn store that you support, please ask them if they’ll carry it!

Shipping off the Diplomats

This has been a busy week of organizing and packing and otherwise getting ready to ship hundreds of gnomes off to Korea for next month’s show at Everyday Mooonday. Here’s what our dining room looks like right now.


I think at least one of those boxes is just holding packing peanuts for other boxes, but I don’t even know anymore. Shipping is stressful!

Of course, among those hundreds of gnomes are hundreds of gnome diplomats that all of you sent in. In preparation for sending them off on their mission of spreading cuteness and happiness to the other side of the globe, we’ve finally tallied them all: Including the lovely gnomes submitted by Chicagoland knitters at YarnCon, we recruited a total of 332 gnomes to travel to Seoul—I am blown away by this number!


To celebrate, I’m selecting two random gnome knitters to get a Personal Happiness Labbit that I picked up at Rotofugi.


There’s no need for suspense, so the winners are… Monica E. and Rosemary S.! I’ll send you each an email for your mailing address.

Full details about the show are coming soon, but first I get to take a weekend off from knitting gnomes, which will be a refreshing break before John and I start getting ready to go to Seoul ourselves!

Soupy Says Goodbye to the Giant Gnomes

Project Giant Gnome
Three Feet Tall
Kinda Done but Not Really
Giant Gnome has a Big New Friend

Just as I’m about to ship the giant gnomes off to Seoul, Soupy finally cozies up to the big guys.


Today I’m going to “deflate” them by removing all the stuffing, so that they’re more compact for international shipping. Then once I arrive in Seoul later in May, hopefully they will be waiting for me to stuff them back up and put them in a show at Everyday Mooonday!

By the way, they now have names! Alfred (in the blue shirt) and Omelet (in the green).

Big thanks to Lion Brand for providing the yarn for this epic knitting project. The full show announcement and info are coming soon!

Tiny Dino Zipper Pull

Max of MillaMia found an adorable use for a tiny dinosaur—as a zipper pull for a pencil case!


You can find the tiny dinosaur pattern in my book Teeny-Tiny Mochimochi. And the pencil case pattern is in the MillaMia book Finishing Touch.

Adventures in Mochimochi Land: Official Trailer

I’m excited to share an official trailer for my new book, Adventures in Mochimochi Land!

So that’s a little taste of the fun that’s coming June 9th. You can also read a preview of the first story in the book here.

Adventures in Mochimochi Land is coming out June 9th! It’s now available for preorder from Amazon, from Barnes & Noble, and from Powells, among other places. Signed copies are also available for preorder from me in the Mochimochi Shop. Or if you have a local bookstore or yarn store that you support, please ask them if they’ll carry it!

Thanks to Maureen Boyle for putting the trailer together!

Thank You for the Gnomes!

After a long weekend away at VK Live Pasadena, and a long cab ride back from the airport in a suddenly chilly and overcast Chicago, it was awesome to come home to this on the front porch.


So many happy packages of gnomes! There were even more inside waiting for me.

The deadline has now passed for Project Gnome Diplomacy submissions, and I want to thank each one of you who contributed, whether it was with a single gnome or a whole gnome entourage. There’s no final tally yet—I’m still playing catchup with the packages, and I still need to get the gnomes that were made/dropped off over the weekend at YarnCon—but I’m more than thrilled with how many we’ve received. I love that you all came through for this vaguely defined and pretty silly project!


I’m going to continue sharing the gnomes that I un-package on Instragram—they’re all so unique and cool that I’m going to space the posts out over the next week or so, to maximize the gnome fun. (So if you can’t find your gnome on there right now, don’t worry!)

Some of the gnomes are even meeting strange new Mochimochi Land creatures who will join them in their journey to Seoul, like this fellow from Colorado, who encountered a most unusual gnome…


I’ll be sharing more on this project as we have the final tally and, of course, once the gnomes are on display in Seoul for all to see. (What exactly will happen with them after the show is still yet to be finalized, but I plan for them to remain there as a gift to the people of Seoul.)

If you missed out on participating, I’ve been so happy with how this project has gone that I hope to do something along these lines again in the future. So stay in touch for more creature calls.

Thanks again to all you super gnome makers!

VK LIVE Pasadena Recap

I just returned from a really fun weekend at Vogue Knitting LIVE in sunny Pasadena!

Right here is where I would insert a photo of palm trees, but I have a habit of missing important “locale” photos, and instead this is the only photo I took outside of the marketplace all weekend.


I passed this place every morning on my run, and I liked the local flavor of it amongst all the upscale chain stores. Pasadena has an interesting mix of the old and the new like that.

The last time I was in the area was for VK LIVE in LA four years ago. So this was a welcome opportunity to return, and it was great to see some familiar faces from last time, plus plenty of new people.

Thursday and Friday morning were a blur of stitching and pinning Mochimochi Land together. Seven hours of work on this might seem like a lot, but spreading it out over two days helps a lot, and I don’t get much happier than when I’m listening to some music on my phone and making little dramas take shape.


And to me it’s worth it to add all the fun little details for people to discover.


I set up most of Mochimochi Land in a similar way as I did in NYC earlier this year, but I like to change it up a bit every time, so this time we had colorful sheep, alpaca, and disco gnomes!


See more from the weekend after the jump!

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