My new storybook/pattern book, Adventures in Mochimochi Land, is due out in just two and a half more weeks! That basically coincides with the beginning of summer, so what’s not to love?
Previously I’ve shared peeks into the first two stories in the book, The Hungry Donut and The Underwater Election, and today I’m excited to introduce the third and final story in the book, The Lighthearted Lovers.
The tale begins in Carnivalville, where the animals run all the rides and bear no responsibility for loss or injury.
Everyone has a grand time at Carnivalville, except for a bunch of balloons who would rather be having adventures than be tied down to spend the day with an elephant carnie.
They get their chance when the elephant sneezes, and the balloons are off to see the world!
One balloon joins a flock of rainbowbirds flying south…
while another balloon flies too close to the sun.
Two balloons race a kite… and tie for first!
And one balloon gives an earthworm the ride of his life.
Finally, one last balloon, named Hugo, falls in love with the aircraft of his dreams.
The romance and drama that follow will have to be saved for the book. But I’d like to share one very special thing about this story—it involved making the biggest version of Mochimochi Land that I’ve ever attempted!
If you’ve encountered the 6-foot display that I’ve shown at Vogue Knitting LIVE, that may have seemed big, but this one had to be way bigger, because we wanted shots of it in the distance with airborne objects in the foreground.
So we basically took over my photographer, Brandi Simons’s living room for a couple of days, spreading out the landscape as wide as it would go and adding any kind of filler fabric around the sides that we could get our hands on. It was a big challenge to try to cover all the seams that resulted with tiny trees and other little elements I could scrounge up. (Probably you can recognize a few things from previous Mochimochi Land projects!)
In the end, it came together with Brandi choosing just the right angle to shoot from and the right depth of focus, plus a little Photoshop magic. You’ll be able to see the end results in the book.
The other challenge with this story was figuring out how to make the balloon strings come alive—limp pieces of yarn hanging down just wouldn’t do. We ended up using a white cloth-coated floral wire we found at the nearby craft store.
(I’ve found it at more than one store, so I think it’s pretty widely available.)
This stuff is easy to cut with wire cutters or even scissors, and you can twist it into any shape you want. And because it’s cloth covered, it really looks like string! I felt like I had hit the jackpot when I found it. But we still needed to use stronger wires to actually prop up the balloons.
I think the floral wire would be perfect for any kind of gift giving or display with the balloons, and of course the pattern for them is included in the book!
That’s it for the story previews from the book, but I have some more behind-the-scenes images to share, plus maybe an extra pattern or two from the book. I’ll also announce a couple of book-related events that are coming up!
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!