Discovering a new craft that you love is very exciting. It is so satisfying to finish a project and, at the same time, find that you have a new set of skills.
I’ve taken quite a few craft classes over the years: stained glass, paper tole, glass etching, woodworking and needle felting. These were all great classes and I enjoyed the projects, but I found that these particular crafts weren’t the right fit for me, and I’m okay with it. Taking a class is often a good way to try out a new craft without investing a lot of time and money in equipment and supplies until you know for sure that it’s something you’ll enjoy creating again and again.
Taking an in-person class is only one way to learn a new craft. There are many resources available to help you: video tutorials on the internet, books and leaflets, family members and friends, or craft associations/guilds within your community.
Becoming self-taught in a particular craft field is especially rewarding. I’m completely self-taught in crochet, sewing, embroidery and cross-stitch, learning from books (long before the internet), and most important of all, practicing, practicing, practicing. Once you’ve gained those skills, you can even design your own patterns and projects! It took many years of practicing my crochet and sewing skills before I felt comfortable enough to design my own soft toy patterns.
Over the last few months I’ve been teaching myself knitting. As a child, I was taught simple beginner stitches by my mother and grandmother, but I didn’t go any further with it. It’s only recently that I’ve decided to try knitting once again. I found that it was easy to relearn the basic skills that I already knew and to build on that long-forgotten knowledge. As with crochet and sewing, I’ve referenced instructional knitting books and then practiced those techniques.
For my first projects, I decided to make some simple toys (of course!). It didn’t cost very much for the supplies. I found some instructional knitting books and patterns at a second hand store, knitting needles at a rummage sale, and I already had some yarn on hand from my crochet projects. Here are the finished knitted toys.
From these patterns, I learned knitting, purling, increases and decreases for shaping, and basic colour changes. With each new project I hope to build on these skills so that one day I can design my own knitting patterns!
With many resources available for different types of crafts, it’s now easier than ever to find something that you enjoy doing. So take a class, pick up a book, or watch a video tutorial; an exciting new craft may be waiting for you!
Until next time,
Welcome! My name is Lisa Bosch, and I'm the soft toy designer of Softiez patterns.