Why Crafting Is Good for Your Mental Health and Wellbeing

Last Updated: January 22, 2024

In today's fast-paced and technology-driven world, finding ways to unwind and destress is more important than ever. One activity that has been gaining popularity for its therapeutic benefits is crafting, particularly paper crafting and card making. It’s a fun and creative hobby that offers numerous mental health benefits that can help improve overall wellbeing. In this blog post, we'll explore the joys of handmade crafting and why it's good for your mental health.

A cardmaker happily stamping with Altenew products at Altenew's Meet and Greet

The Therapeutic Power of Crafting

Crafting, whether it's making handmade cards, scrapbooking, journaling, or knitting has been shown to have a positive impact on mental health. Engaging in creative activities can help reduce stress, anxiety, and depression by providing a sense of accomplishment and boosting self-esteem. The act of creating something with your hands can be incredibly rewarding and can serve as a form of self-expression and relaxation.

An artist painting outdoors and using plants and trees as inspiration

Paper crafting and card making, in particular, offer a unique opportunity to unleash your creativity while also connecting with others. The process of selecting crafting supplies, designs, and techniques can be both meditative and exciting, allowing you to escape from the pressures of everyday life.

Let’s explore a few ways in which crafting can benefit your mental health and bring joy into your life.

  • Stress Relief: Engaging in crafting activities has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety. The rhythmic and repetitive motions involved in many crafts, such as knitting or crocheting (or even stamping and die-cutting!), can have a calming effect on the mind, similar to meditation. Focusing on a creative project can help to quiet the noise of everyday life and provide a much-needed mental break.
  • Sense of Accomplishment: Completing a handmade project provides a sense of accomplishment and pride. Whether it's finishing a handmade card, creating watercolor art, or creating a piece of jewelry, the act of bringing something beautiful into existence can boost self-esteem and foster a positive mindset.
  • Mindfulness and Presence: Crafting encourages mindfulness and being present in the moment. When you're engrossed in a creative endeavor, you're fully focused on the task at hand, which can help alleviate rumination and worries about the past or future. This mindfulness practice can lead to improved mental clarity and a greater appreciation for the present.
  • Sense of Purpose and Fulfillment: Engaging in crafting provides a sense of purpose and fulfillment. Whether you're creating handmade gifts for loved ones, crafting items for charity, or simply pursuing a personal passion, the act of making something with meaning can bring a deep sense of fulfillment and purpose to your life.
  • Emotional Regulation: Crafting can serve as a form of emotional regulation, providing a healthy outlet for processing and managing emotions. The act of creating can help individuals navigate feelings of stress, sadness, or frustration by providing a constructive and positive way to channel those emotions.
  • Boost in Cognitive Function: Many crafting activities require problem-solving, spatial awareness, and fine motor skills, which can help keep the brain engaged and active. Engaging in these activities may contribute to improved cognitive function and may even offer some protection against cognitive decline as we age.
  • Personal Growth and Learning: Crafting offers opportunities for personal growth and learning. Trying out new techniques, experimenting with different materials, and learning from mistakes can all contribute to a sense of growth and development, fostering a mindset of resilience and adaptability.
  • Community and Connection: Crafting often brings people together, whether it's through local crafting groups, online communities, or workshops. The sense of belonging and camaraderie that comes from sharing a passion for handmade creations can combat feelings of isolation and foster meaningful connections with others.

Crafter Amy Hill showing off her handmade card at one of Altenew's virtual crafting workshops.Online Card Making Classes and Virtual Crafting Retreats

If you're looking to jumpstart your paper crafting journey, Altenew offers a range of online card making classes and virtual crafting retreats that cater to crafters of all levels. These workshops provide a supportive and encouraging environment where you can learn new techniques, explore different styles, and connect with fellow crafters from around the world.

The virtual crafting retreats are especially exciting as they allow you to immerse yourself in a full day of creativity without ever leaving your home. With a lineup of talented instructors and a variety of projects to choose from, these retreats offer a unique opportunity to expand your skills and indulge in your passion for crafting.

Sign up for our upcoming March Mindfulness Retreat 2024 and discover mindful crafting!

Altenew President Tasnim Ahmed showcasing the Stampwheel at last year's Creativation.

Joining Facebook Fan Groups and Crafting Communities

In addition to online workshops and retreats, joining Facebook fan groups and crafting communities can be a great way to connect with like-minded individuals who share your love for paper crafting and card making. These groups provide a platform for sharing ideas, seeking advice, and showcasing your latest handmade creations.

A lucky Altenew fan is all smiles as she holds Altenew's special crafting box during the exclusive warehouse tour last year.

The sense of community and camaraderie within these groups can be incredibly uplifting and inspiring. Whether you're a beginner looking for guidance or a seasoned crafter wanting to share your expertise, being part of a crafting community can offer valuable support and encouragement.

Read more on The Power of Community: Finding Inspiration and Support in Crafting Groups.

Two cardmakers showing off their handmade cards during one of Altenew's in-person card making workshops at Creativation.

The Joys of Handmade Crafts

If you have been immersed in the world of paper crafting and card making for several years, you can attest to the positive impact it has on your mental health. There’s nothing more uplifting than sitting down at your craft desk, surrounded by colorful papers, inks, stamps, embellishments, and more.

Creating handmade cards for family and friends has become most crafters’ go-to way of expressing love and gratitude. The process of carefully selecting the theme, layout, and color palette, and personalizing each card can bring immense joy and fulfillment. Knowing that your handmade creations will bring a smile to someone's face is truly rewarding.

Altenew team members Jen Rzasa and Lydia Evans sharing a sweet hug.

The therapeutic benefits of crafting extend beyond the act of creating. The friendships crafters formed within the crafting community have been invaluable. Whether it's bonding over their shared love for all things crafty or supporting each other through life's ups and downs, the connections they’ve made through crafting have enriched their lives in unexpected ways.

Journaling and planner enthusiasts having a wonderful time as they play with Altenew products at last year's Go Wild Planner Conference.

Discover the Joy of Creating Handmade Crafts

The joys of handmade crafting go far beyond the finished product. Engaging in paper crafting and card making can have a profound impact on your mental health and wellbeing. From the therapeutic power of creativity to the sense of community and connection it fosters, crafting offers various benefits that can enhance the overall quality of your life.

Get out your crafting supplies and embark on a journey of creativity and self-care! Your mental health will thank you for it. Remember, it's not just about making beautiful handmade cards; it's about nurturing your soul through the joys of handmade creations.

Get more crafting inspiration, tips, and ideas In the Craft Room. See you there!

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