Things Learned on the Set

Week one of my book photo shoot has been quite a whirlwind of knitting and photography and some strange decision making! Some of the things I’ve learned in the past 7 days:

• Sometimes the best thing to do is iron the wall.

bookshoot14_1

• Pipe cleaners have really come a long way since I was a kid, and I seriously have a whole new respect for them.

• In a pinch, a ball of yarn can be a pretty great reflector holder.

bookshoot14_2

• My dad is a hero. (But I already knew that.)

bookshoot14_3

• My photographer is a hero. (I knew that too!)

• Wrapping a plastic ferris wheel in yarn is harder than it sounds.

bookshoot14_4

• Even the cutest toys have to get ugly sometimes. For the sake of art.

bookshoot14_5

• It’s probably best not to start out a photo shoot with the most difficult shot in the entire book.

There’s plenty more work to do and I’m sure lots more to learn along the way. Follow me on Twitter or Facebook for behind-the-scenes updates as we enter week two of the photo shoot!

Three Bags Full

Would you believe that everything I’ve been working on over the past four months fits into three zip-lock bags?

3bagsfull

That’s a slight exaggeration, but not far from the truth.

It’s photo shoot time for my next book, so all the hours of knitting and designing and re-knitting and re-designing are getting packed up for a trip to Oklahoma, where the fun part starts and Brandi Simons and I get to play with toys! Follow me on Twitter or Facebook for some peeks behind the scenes over the next couple of weeks.

This photography trip also means that we’ll have a shipping delay on physical goods—all orders placed between now and May 13th will be shipped on May 14th. (Orders on PDF patterns will be unaffected.)

Zdenija’s Empire-Building Bunnies

While there’s still a little half-priced Easter candy left on store shelves, I wanted to share again this awesome photo series from Zdenija, who entered our bunny-themed photo series contest in 2012. Zdenija titled her entry “Building an Empire,” and we were tickled by the clever way that her bunnies’ empire takes shape!

bc12_winner2a

bc12_winner2b

bc12_winner2c

bc12_winner2d

bc12_winner2e

bc12_winner2f

I love how this series demonstrates that you don’t need fancy props or a stunning location to come up with a really clever story. Something to keep in mind as you think about what to do for this year’s just-announced photo series contest! (This time, tiny bunnies as well as all manner of other mochis are invited to play!

Tiny People 2 Patterns Now on Ravelry

This has taken way too long for me to accomplish, but the Tiny People 2 pattern collection is now available via Ravelry!

tinypeople2_rav

If you already purchased the patterns and would like to have them in your Ravelry library, just send me a message and include your last name and the email address you used when you made your purchase. That also goes for any patterns that you’ve purchased from my website, by the way!

Why don’t I just offer the patterns on Ravelry as soon as they come out? Whether I sell a pattern via my website or via Ravelry doesn’t make much difference as far as sales go. However, I like to think that Mochimochi Land offers more than just patterns, and so I want to encourage people to visit our own site where they can get inspiration from other people’s projects, see what weird cute stuff I’m obsessing about on the blog, and find out about events and other goings on, like the photo series contest I just announced. (I hope to see some tiny sumo wrestlers and ballerinas in the entries!)

Ravelry has been huge to my life as a knitter and to my business, so I certainly want to spread the love to them too. They get a monthly fee for the pattern sales in my Ravelry shop, and all of my patterns are listed there. (I usually list patterns on Ravelry a month after debuting them here, although I was late with this newest collection). Ravelry is also the only website that I regularly advertise on.

Just a little insight for anyone who might be wondering what’s up with my pattern availability. I leave you with a tiny sumo wrestler battling a giant piece of ebi sushi.

sumomatch500.gif

Announcing the 2014 Mochimochi Photo Series Contest

Update: Congratulations to our winners!

The time has come, mochi knitters, for this year’s springtime photo contest!

psc14_announce

We all know that cute knitted creatures are great for gifts, decorations, and the occasional tea cozy, but what do your mochis get up to when no one is looking? We want to see your knitted friends in action through a series of photos!

Choose any Mochimochi Land creatures to feature in your story. Then, take a series of photos showing your mochis getting up to something: fighting crime, exploring the universe, putting on a concert—let your imagination go wild!

The top three photo series will win stunning hand-dyed Mini Skeinbows from Happy Go Lucky, an awesome indie dyer local to our new Chicago home. And everyone will win positive creative karma!

The deadline for entries is May 27th.

happygolucky1

CONTEST DETAILS

Eligibility

Knitters from all countries are welcome to enter! To be eligible, your photo series must contain at least one knitted toy made from a Mochimochi Land pattern. That can be any pattern from the Mochimochi Shop, from Anna’s books, or one of the free patterns available here. The pattern may be modified, but not beyond recognition from the original design.

How to enter

Simply add your photo series to the Mochimochi Friends Flickr group, include numbers in their titles to indicate the order they should be viewed in, and tag them with seriescontest14. If you don’t have a Flickr account, it is free and easy to register (though we recommend signing up as soon as possible, because it takes a little time for your account to be approved for sharing photos in a group).

This is a series contest, so your entry should consist of 3 to 6 photos showing a story taking place. You may enter up to three series. Photos entered in this contest will not be eligible for the 2014 Mochimochi Photo Contest this fall.

Judging

Winners will be picked by us at Mochimochi Land, but the Flickr pool is open to be seen by everyone. We will be focusing on creativity in this contest, and not just looking for pretty images.

Deadline

The last day to enter the contest is May 27, 2014. We’ll announce the winners shortly thereafter!

Prizes!

The top three winners each receive a selection of colorful selection of fingering-weight wool/nylon yarn provided by Happy Go Lucky: third place gets a 6-skein Mini Skeinbow (Brights), second place gets two Mini Skeinbows (Brights and Lights), and first place gets three Mini Skeinbows (Brights, Lights, and Muted).

happygolucky2

Thank you to Julie of Happy Go Lucky!

Happy Bunny Easter

nestingbunnies

Happy Easter weekend, everyone!

If you’re looking for some last-minute quick knits, check out our FREE springtimey patterns for Grass, Tiny Chickens, Snails & Slugs, and Tiny Baby Bunnies.

Amy Hicks’s Oakley the Bear

Amy Hicks, winner of our 2012 photo contest, just released her first pattern! Meet Oakley the Bear.

amyhicks_oakley

It makes me happy to see knitters try their hand at design. Everyone has their own unique approach and style. (The felt details on this guy are so sweet!)

You can buy Amy’s pattern on Ravelry or at her Etsy Shop.

Congrats, Amy!

Happy Bunny Passover

This is a re-blog, but fhmitchellaud’s Steinbunny family celebrating Passover is cute enough for another go-around!

tinybunnies_fhmitchellaud

This was one of the many fun entries that we got in our Tiny Bunny photo contest from 2012. (And the tiny baby bunny pattern is free!) And speaking of which, stay tuned for a big photo contest announcement coming soon…

Happy Passover to those who are celebrating this week!