Fancy learning a new skill? In our hectic times, crafting is becoming more popular as a way of easing stress.
Neuroscientists are beginning to investigate how crafting that requires a lot of focus, such as quilting, can stimulate the brain in the same way as doing crossword puzzles or suduko and help slow down the aging process. It can also help relieve anxiety. More repetitive activities such as plain knitting or sewing can aid a mental state akin to meditation.
Many of us no longer produce a tangible product in the course of our jobs, so creating something with your own hands is enormously satisfying. To get you started, we’ve scoured Etsy for some more unusual craft ideas in kit form, so it’s easy to try something new.
1. Candle making kit, One Stop Pamper Shop
Containing 500g blended container wax, wicks, dye, candle tins and a choice of two fragance oils, this kit contains all you need to make five scented candles. £17.50, available from One Stop Pamper Shop on Etsy.
2. Felt succulent garden, The Handmade Florist
Even those with the least green of fingers can make these succulent plants. This kit contains materials and full step-by-step instructions to make seven succulents of five different varieties) and three leaves which sit in a 13cm terracotta dish (supplied). No sewing required! £14, available from The Handmade Florist on Etsy.
3. Sheep needle felting kit, Hawthorne Handmade
Learn how to needle felt this woolly Swaledale Sheep using British felting wool. Follow the step by step photo instructions and use the included felting needles to stab the wool to life. It will take a beginner approximately 6 hours to complete this sheep, and when he’s done you could use him as a pin cushion, jewellery holder or just an ornament. Prices start at £17.45, available from Hawthorne Handmade on Etsy.
4. Paper hot air balloon mobile, Fantasy Forest Designs
Make your own hot air balloon mobile, perfect to hand in a conservatory or child’s bedroom. Kit contains four hot air balloons hanging from a fluffy white cloud with a loop for easy hanging. £10, available from Fantasy Forest Designs on Etsy.
5. Matchstick model caravan, Look2cArt
This one’s certainly a bit different, and will need a steady hand! If you fancy a longer-term project, this is for you. The kit contains model matchsticks, glue, card templates, full instructions and all accessories, and the finished model is approximately 13cm by 19cm by 24cm. £15.95, available from Look2cArt on Etsy.
6. Made your own 30cm drum lampshade kit, Foxy Crafts UK
Just add your own fabric, wall paper or other covering and follow the simple picture instructions in the box to make your own lampshade, suitable for use with a pendant or table lamp. Kit contains two lampshade rings, self adhesive panel, tape, finishing tool and instructions. £12, available from Foxy Crafts UK on Etsy.
7. DIY wood sign kit, Wild Green Rose
Do-it-yourself wood sign kit, containing pine board, sandpaper, foam brush, stain, vinyl decal and hanging hardware. You can choose from a ‘preset’ design or specify your own, as well as choosing the size and colour of board. Prices start at £16.16 from Wild Green Rose on Etsy.
8. Mosaic wall art craft kit, MyriJoy
A mosaic kit aimed at adults and perfect for crafters of any level. Kit includes Italian marble mosaic tiles, Murano glass mosaic tiles, board with printed grid and frame, hook, image of the finished mosaic, instructions. £51.95, available from MyriJoy on Etsy.
9. Silk scarf kit, Emerald Cloud Art
This silk scarf kit will allow you to create your own unique accessory. It comes with four assorted 10ml colours of easy to use, vibrant flowable silk paint, a plain white scarf and all the accessories you need. £23.43, available from Emerald Cloud Art on Etsy.
10. Round weaving loom kit, Wool Couture Company
Learn to weave with this round loom, suitable for making table mats, decorations and small cushions. The loom is laser cut and hand finished in Yorkshire with strong 6mm FSC certified wood. Kit prices start at £30 from Wool Couture Company on Etsy.