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Giveaway: Knitting Her Two Hobbies Together

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Look familar? Now you too can have your own knitted geocacher doll.

You could say that American geocacher Mimi Barrison really likes to toy around with her hobbies.

Since August, the Florida resident has been creating knitted geocaching toys and accessories to sell on popular crafting webstore Etsy. Among those items are GPSr cozys, pillows depicting the Virtual Cache ghost and Smiley icon, as well as custom geocacher dolls.

Mimi Barrison

Mimi Barrison

Barrison, who has been caching with husband Marc as M&M Melted since 2003, says it was her “combined passions for geocaching and knitting” that inspired her geo-range. “During this time, we have seen many geocaching items, from geocoins and pathtags, to apparel, geo-swag and other practical items for those who share our love of this game.

“However, while I was sitting there knitting a GPSr Cozy one day for myself, I realised I haven’t seen many actual geo-toys and I thought it would be cool to create some in honour of this amazing game.”

That GPSr Cozy wound up being the first product for sale at her SocksKnitPalace store, followed by two geocacher dolls named Mooshie and Mortimer.

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Accuracy: Each doll has its own kitbag and GPSr unit.

When asked if the dolls are based on her and her husband, Barrison explains that the knitted pair represent “traditional geocachers who love to hike, bike, kayak and explore new and wonderful places while enjoying an awesome hi-tech treasure hunt”.

What a doll: Barrison's Mooshie creation.

What a doll: Barrison’s Mooshie creation.

“This is the very basis of M&M Melted’s geocaching philosophy; it’s what got us into the game back in 2003 and what keeps us still loving it almost 10 years later.  So yes, there are similarities between Mortimer and Mooshie and Marc and Mimi.

“Dolls and toys in general are my favourite knitting projects – living in Florida and not having too much personal use for scarves, hats and mittens may have something to do with that – so I had an absolute blast creating them.”

That’s a huge bonus when creating each product takes considerable time. “Pattern writing as a whole takes a while because it’s a great deal of trial and error. Adjustments need to be made while the work is in progress.  The length of time it takes depends on the complexity of the finished item.

Warm and ... A knitted GPSr Cozy.

Warm and … A knitted GPSr Cozy.

“The first pattern took me the longest, although I was very fortunate to have my ‘doll pattern advisor’, as I like to call her. My 18-year-old daughter, Elayna, who also loves knitting and has written a number of her own doll patterns – particularly Avatar, Avengers and other popular characters – for her own Etsy shop, helped me develop the Mooshie pattern and from there I have created a number of dolls using the same or similar patterns.”

So far, Barrison has made four or five examples of each product. “Of course, the dolls take longer – usually between one to two weeks – while the items such as the GPSr Cozys are quicker projects.”

Public reaction to her designs has been positive, inspiring her to several additions to her Etsy stock last month. Of particular note are the new custom geocacher dolls, which Barrison originally began knitting as “a Christmas present for some good geo-friends”. “These dolls are a bit smaller than Mortimer and Mooshie and I’ve used them as examples for my latest Etsy listing – Handmade to Order Personalised Geocaching Dolls.”

Buyers will be able to choose their doll’s hair colour and length, as well as personalised geocaching attributes such as an embroidered team name.

In future, Barrison plans to add plush ammo cans and some geo-swag to her store inventory. She also hopes to make a pillow that looks like the EarthCache icon as well as a two-sided pillow, one side of which shows the “Found it” smiley face while the other side has the DNF frowny face.

“It’s kind of a geocachers’ mood pillow, depending on what type of caching success you’ve had that day.”

GIVEAWAY

FaceAre you hooked on Mimi Barrison’s toys too? Thankfully, It’s Not About The Numbers has one of her knitted treats to give away to a lucky reader.

GhostThe prize will be the winner’s choice of a Virtual Ghostie OR a Happy Geocacher Smiley Pillow (both worth US$15).

Our competition closes at 12 noon (NZ time) this Sunday, January 13th. To get your name in the draw, simply tell us below which of Barrison’s creations you like best.

 

 

3 comments

1 ping

  1. Morgan Talbot

    As a long-time geocacher who’s been inspired to combine geocaching with my favorite hobby–writing–I admire and salute Mimi Barrison’s melding of her two great loves. I love craftiness, and though mine takes shape via plot twists, I have nothing but respect for those who can bring physical objects into being through sheer force of creative will. I suddenly realize that my life is not complete without geocaching dolls who look like my novel’s main characters!

  2. kjwx

    UPDATE: Congratulations, Sharon Thompson – You’re the lucky winner of this INATN giveaway. We’ll be in touch shortly to organise delivery of your prize.

  3. Mimi (M&M Melted)

    Congratulations Sharon! I hope you like your knitted prize! 🙂

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