Crafting at Home: 3 Easy Ways to Get Started

Even if you’re not the artsy type, it’s both fun and healthy to make and create.

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Posted in , Mar 23, 2020

Crafting at home

“The world is but a canvas for our imaginations,” said Henry David Thoreau. At a time when many of us are spending more time than usual at home, this idea is inspiring me to dip into my imagination in new ways. Picking up a great book. Taking a walk and daydreaming about the future. 

And of course: making crafts.

I happen to be a relatively seasoned crafter, and I have a 9-year-old at home who helps me keep my crafting muscles strong. Some of you might be at home with plenty of time on your hands, but feeling too intimidated to dip your toes into the crafty waters.

Fear not—not only are there easy ways to get started making things, but research shows that doing creative work for just 45 minutes can measurably lower stress hormones. 

If you’re not sure where to begin, try these launch points to get going.

1. Watch Someone Else Do It

YouTube and similar video sites are veritable treasure troves of crafting demonstrations. It’s one thing to read a how-to or even to read directions illustrated with photographs. But there’s something about watching someone going through the motions in real time that can really inspire. I did this to learn to make origami paper cranes a year or so ago, and it was the only way I could “get it.” 

An online search for whatever craft you’re interested in (knitting, mosaic, embroidery, sewing, drawing, etc.) will reveal a library of videos showing ideas and techniques. Be sure to preface your search with “easy” (as in “easy origami paper cranes”) to be sure you’re getting instructions you can follow as a beginner.

2. Use the Right Materials

The good news is, almost anything can be made into a craft. Search for ideas for how to decorate old Mason jars, and you’ll know I’m not kidding about that! But if you’re interested in crocheting and don’t have any yarn handy….well, it might be best to focus on a different craft just now. 

Just like you’d be sure you have all the ingredients before starting a recipe, gathering your crafting materials before getting started will set you up for success. You might be more prepared than you think—a stash of buttons, fabric and natural materials like pinecones or pebbles are just some examples of ready-to-craft materials you might already have on hand.

3. Start Simple—and Stick with It

You’ve probably heard the phrase, don’t try to run before you can walk. This is very true with crafting. Making something complex is satisfying and enjoyable—but only if you have already mastered the basics of the technique you’re interested in. Once you’ve gotten started, remember another helpful phrase: practice makes progress. 

Starting something new means stepping into a learning curve. Be patient with yourself and have fun at each stage.

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