Mindful Craft Ideas for Relaxation

Engaging in relaxing crafts can be an excellent way to unwind, relieve stress, and express creativity. Try these Mindful Craft Ideas for Relaxation and Creativity allowing you to express yourself artistically. I have always loved crafting from a young age and it is my favourite way to relax.

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These crafts can help stimulate your imagination, and encourage you to think outside the box. Finding a new craft hobby could be just the thing to set you on the right track and relax. Crafting can even be a great thing for kids to do too to relieve anxiety and let them express themselves.

Mindful crafts for relaxation Crafts on a pin image

Why is crafting good for the mind?

These craft ideas for relaxation are great for anxiety and relieving stress, leaving you with a sense of accomplishment. Focusing on a craft project can divert attention from everyday emotions and worries and provide a calming effect. It can also promote mindfulness by helping you stay present in the moment. In fact crafting is my favourite way to relax.

Craft can also help with cognitive stimulation, involving various cognitive processes such as problem-solving, planning, and decision-making.

These engaging craft activities can keep your mind active and sharpen your cognitive abilities, thus enabling you to relax.

lots of mini houses on a scrapbook page by Donna scrapbooking page Vallance. Papers are pink Paisley Bloom Street
A paper craft scrapbooking page by Donna Vallance at Likelovedo

16 Mindful Craft Ideas To Try, that can help you relax

There are so many types of hobbies and crafts you can do that are creative and relaxing; you just need to find one that suits you. Even if you are not particularly creative or artistic, there are so many crafts where you can follow an easy process, such as creating an indoor Zen garden or filling in a painting by using numbers. Crafting also does not need to be expensive you can use recycled materials for your craft making.

These are some craft ideas for relaxation that are good for the mind and can help with mental health:

Try a Coloring Page

Coloring pages, adult colouring books, and kids’ books have gained popularity for their therapeutic benefits. Coloring intricate designs or patterns requires sustained attention and concentration. I love colouring with a range of different art supplies such as felt pens or even colouring pencils.

Choose designs such as mandalas or detailed adult colouring pages to colour. You can colour them with colored pencils, markers, or even watercolors. You can even find Colouring pages in different themes such as Christmas colouring pages or easter coloring pages.

Free MR Postman lyrics coloring page with hearts
Colouring page design by Donna Vallance: likelovedo

Learn To Knit

Knitting is a fabulous needlework craft that can be calming and meditative. Learning to knit can be a fabulous craft once you have mastered it.

Knitting evolves using wool woven around two needles to create patterns that knit together. Start with a simple scarf, and you can learn to master more patterns that are more complex. This is a great craft to master as you can make some really useful projects such as clothing and blankets.

And if knitting is a bit hard to start with you could always try your hand at making some woollen Pom Pom projects such as this super easy Pom Pom cushion.

A cushion made of brightly coloured wool Pom pom’s
A cushion made of brightly coloured wool Pom pom’s. Photo Credit: Donna Vallance

Try Needle felting

Needle felt art it is an artistic therapeutic craft using wool and felting needles to sculpt shapes and figures. You need un spun wool which you stab with a needle to shape over and over to condense fibres of the wool together creating shapes. Sculpting the loose wool into sculptures such an animals and flowers. I’ve tried it a few times and find it particularly satisfying and relaxing too.

Needle felting a cat Woman’s hand
Photo Credit: Donna Vallance

Crochet

If you can knit, you can also learn to crochet using just one crochet needle and some wool. It resembles knitting but uses a single hook instead of two needles. The crochet hook is used to pull loops of yarn through other loops, creating stitches that form a chain and build upon each other to create various patterns and textures.

Crocheting allows for the creation of various items such as blankets, scarves, hats, sweaters, and amigurumi (small stuffed toys). It offers endless possibilities for creativity, with different stitch combinations, colors, and types of yarns to achieve different effects.

Learning to crochet can be a productive hobby, allowing individuals to express their creativity while making beautiful and functional handmade items. It is relatively easy to start, too, with many online tutorials.

Blue and yellow crocheted square blanket laid out flat. Photo Credit: Donna Vallance, Likelovedo
Photo Credit: Donna Vallance, Likelovedo

Scrapbooking

Scrapbooking can be a therapeutic, mindful and rewarding craft. You can also create personalized photo albums to treasure and keep forever. Scrapbooking is the art of preserving your photos and memories in an artistic way using paper and embellishments.

Learn how to scrapbook and gather some scrapbooking tools, your favourite photos, memorabilia, paper glue and decorative papers to create memory scrapbook pages. You can add scrapbooking photos onto large 12 x12 papers or choose smaller books and journals. Try making your first scrapbooking page and see how you get on.

Scrapbooking is great for making and giving as gifts too. You could create a wedding album for a couple for their special day or even a baby scrapbook album for the parents of a newborn.

There are so many scrapbooking ideas to help you create your dream pages, and it is a fantastic way to relax and unleash your creativity. Add scrapbooking cut files using a Cricut or Silhouette machine for added interest.

Festival vibes free cut file for scrapbooking. Photo Credit: Donna Vallance, Likelovedo
Festival scrapbooking page Photo Credit: Donna Vallance, Likelovedo

Learn To Paint

Painting is a great craft idea for relaxation. You can try many painting activities, such as watercolour pens and paints, acrylics, or paint-by-numbers.

Painting by numbers kits is easy with a pre-printed canvas with numbered sections corresponding to specific paint colors. It’s a relaxing way to create beautiful art without the need for drawing skills. Try watercolour pens they are an easy way to ease yourself into painting.

cut out floral watercolour brush pen flowers, Photo Credit: Donna Vallance, Likelovedo
Water colour brush flowers, Photo Credit: Donna Vallance, Likelovedo

Practice Embroidery

Embroidery is a naturally therapeutic craft that has been around for centuries. Embroidery allows you to create intricate designs with needle and thread on fabrics. Using embroidery thread, a pattern, a needle, and some cotton, you can bring it to life on textiles such as cushions or clothes.

A pinboard with sewing and needles on
Photo Credit: Donna Vallance

Have a Go at Paper Crafting

Paper crafting can be a calming and creative hobby. All you need is some paper, scissors, and often some paper glue. Many types of paper crafts exist, such as quilling, origami, card making, and scrapbooking.

  • Origami involves folding paper to create intricate three-dimensional shapes and objects.
  • Quilling uses thin strips of paper that are rolled, shaped, and glued to form decorative designs.
  • Scrapbooking combines photos, paper-cut files, and embellishments to create personalized memory albums or journals.
  • Paper cutting, or Kirigami, involves intricate cutting and folding techniques to produce detailed designs and pop-up cards.
  • Decoupage and collages involve using magazine cutting or patterned papers to create unique art pieces.
  • Paper mache utilizes strips or pulp of paper mixed with glue or paste to create sculptural forms.
  • Make large paper flowers for home decoration
How to make large paper flowers with free template For a flower wall, Photo Credit: Donna Vallance, Likelovedo
Photo Credit: Donna Vallance, Likelovedo

Additionally, there are paper weaving, decoupage, paper sculpture, paper bead-making, and various other techniques that showcase the versatility and beauty of papercraft. Almost all of these paper crafts require concentration which can take your mind off everyday worries and help you relax.

Make beaded Jewellery

Making beaded jewellery can be a fun and rewarding craft. You can purchase many types of beads such as glass or plastic it lots of different sizes. You can make necklaces, earrings, bracelets and even glasses chains.

A blue and brown beaded handmade necklace. Photo Credit: Donna Vallance
A blue and brown beaded handmade necklace. Photo Credit: Donna Vallance

Paint Mandala Stones

Mandala Stones and rock painting is a great hobby that is easy to do even if you are not creative. You can paint smooth stones with intricate mandala designs using just a paintbrush, some paint, and a series of dots.

The repetitive patterns and calming colors can be soothing and create beautiful decorative pieces. You can also paint your own artwork, such as inspiring quotes, affirmations, or words, onto the rocks too.

Hand painted Tower bridge in London on a stone held up in front of Tower Bridge. Photo Credit: Donna Vallance, Likelovedo
Hand painted Tower bridge in London on a stone held up in front of Tower Bridge. Photo Credit: Donna Vallance, Likelovedo

Try Candle Making

Creating your own candles has become a much more popular hobby allowing you to experiment with scents, colors, and shapes. The process of melting wax, adding fragrance, and pouring it into molds can be quite relaxing, plus you achieve a fabulous end product that you can gift to a loved one.

You can use all sorts of different receptacle’s to make your candles. You can recycle old tea cups and pots found at home and turn them in to fragrant candles.

A handmade candle in a teacup on a London Market stall
Photo Credit: Donna Vallance

Zen Doodle

Zen Doodle, also known as Zendoodle or Zen Doodling, is a form of meditative art that involves creating intricate and repetitive patterns, shapes, and designs.

It is a free-flowing and spontaneous style of drawing, where the focus is on the process rather than the end result. This means you can relax and not worry about the result, which in turn encourages relaxation and mindfulness. It allows for creative expression without the pressure of achieving perfection, promoting a sense of calm, concentration, and stress relief.

Through Zen Doodle, individuals can tap into their creativity, explore their artistic instincts, and find a peaceful and meditative state of mind. All you need is a pen, marker or a pencil. You can even create digital doodles on a tablet like an iPad.

An Altered art image of Zen doodling and pens. Photo Credit Donna Vallance
An Altered art image of Zen doodling and pens. Photo Credit Donna Vallance

Try Junk Journaling

Why not try your hand at junk journaling, a creative form of art journaling that involves using a variety of found or recycled materials to create unique and eclectic journals? It is also a blend between scrapbooking and old-fashioned decoupage.

The term “junk” refers to using random, everyday items you may throw away, like ticket stubs, magazine cutouts, fabric scraps, old book pages, packaging materials, and other ephemera. These items are combined with traditional journaling elements like writing, drawing, painting, and collage to create visually rich and artistic pages. It allows for creative freedom and experimentation, and the process often focuses on self-expression, storytelling, and capturing memories in an artistic and unconventional way.

Junk journals can serve as creative outlets, therapeutic tools, or personal keepsakes while incorporating and repurposing everyday objects.

A pink junk Journalling page using free printable cut out pictures in a junk journal book,
Photo Credit: Donna Vallance

Macrame

Macrame is a versatile form of textile art that involves creating patterns and designs using various knotting techniques.

Originating from ancient civilizations, macrame gained popularity in the 1970s as a decorative craft. It typically involves knotting using your hands with cords, such as cotton or jute, to create knots that form patterns. You can create fringes or intricate structures like plant hangers, wall hangings, or jewelry.

The art of macrame allows for endless creativity, combining different types of knots, colors, and textures to produce beautiful and unique handmade pieces. Its resurgence in recent years has made it a trendy and popular craft that enables individuals to express their artistic flair and bring a bohemian charm to their homes or personal style.

An orange  macrame butterfly on a wrist
An orange macrame butterfly on a wrist. Photo credit: Donna Vallance

Try a life drawing class.

Sometimes it is nice to be taught tips on how to draw. A life drawing class could be just the thing to you sit relax and unwind. You could try still life, Portrait or even paint nudes. Check out your local craft classes for one near you.

A pencil drawn portrait of an older lady at a life drawing class
Photo Credit: Donna Vallance

Create a Zen Garden

A Zen garden, also known as a Japanese rock garden or dry landscape garden, is a minimalist and contemplative garden style that originated in Japan. It is designed to evoke a sense of tranquility, harmony, and inner peace.

Zen gardens typically feature carefully arranged rocks, gravel, or sand raked into patterns representing water or waves and sparse vegetation such as moss or small shrubs. The design principles of a Zen garden often incorporate asymmetry, simplicity, and natural elements to create a serene and meditative atmosphere.

These gardens are intended to be viewed and contemplated, providing a space for reflection, mindfulness, and relaxation.The process of making a Zen garden can also be very peaceful and relaxing too. You can create your own Zen garden at home in a small space, such as a pot or window box.

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