NYC Gnomes

I got to return to NYC over the weekend! It’s been a bit less than a year since John and I moved from there to Chicago, and we couldn’t have picked a better early fall weekend for a visit.

On Monday I found myself with four spare gnomes and a few spare hours in the city, so I decided to revisit four places that are meaningful to me and set a gnome free at each spot. I may no longer live there, but there’s no reason why a few of my gnomes can’t be New Yorkers!

Gnome #1 started his NYC adventure in Columbus Circle, which was my main hub when we lived in midtown Manhattan.


Gnome #2 got was set free on the High Line, which to me represents everything cool and beautiful and ambitious about NYC.


(It also happened to be the second day that the newest portion of this park in the sky was open to the public—it’s really something to experience!)

Gnome #3 was content to be left hanging out at Prospect Park in Brooklyn, which I visited almost every day during the four years that I lived next to it.


And finally, Gnome #4 found a new home on Elizabeth Street in Manhattan, where I got my first job out of college.


I liked the idea of leaving these guys around the city for anyone to stumble upon and take home. I didn’t attach any kind of tags to the gnomes—I wanted the people who found them to just enjoy the discovery and the mystery. (I did share each of these photos on Instagram and Twitter in real time as I left each gnome behind.) This gnome release was partly inspired by the Tiny Bunnies Movement, which I’m happy to see is still active on Ravelry!

When I mapped it out, I see that the gnomes and I covered some pretty good ground in eight hours!


A part of me will probably always miss living in NYC, but it’s neat to think that the city and I will continue to have a connection via my little bearded ambassadors of Mochimochi Land.

Have YOU ever purposefully left a mochi behind somewhere for someone to find?

4 thoughts on “NYC Gnomes

  1. About a year ago, I stumbled upon a “Christmas ornament exchange” Palo Verde tree while hiking in the desert. The premise was that you could take an ornament you like from the tree and leave ornaments you no longer want for someone else to take and enjoy. Did I mention that this was along a hiking trail in the middle of the desert? :D I couldn’t wait to get home to knit up some mochis to leave on the tree! I wound up making about 4 mini mochis: Santa, Christmas Tree, Cactus w/beaded Christmas lights, Snowman, plus my own Gingerbread Man to include in the tree’s offering. About a week later I went back and all of them were gone! It still puts a smile on my face when I think that someone was enjoying them on their Christmas tree – and hopefully they’ll be enjoying them for many years to come!

  2. I have! I knitted bunnies, zombies and gnomes and just stuck them here and there around Disney World. I will always wonder who found them and what did they do with them :)

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