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January 01, 2019

The cure for cabin fever

Crafting works to while away the winter blues

Brandi Holmes

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The winter months are in full swing and there is only so much frolicking in the snow you can do before vital body parts start to get affected.
It could be time to move your activities indoors, and look for hobbies that are more suited to the indoor lifestyle, like knitting or painting or crafting!

Indoor activities can be fun too; you can work on a stamp or comic book collection, build model cars or airplanes or even crocheting and needlepoint seem to be making a comeback. There are almost endless possibilities of crafting hobbies that you can get yourself into.

Crafting is a tried and true hobby that not always requires a lot of skill, or a lot of room, but it sure helps if you have both. Just clean off your kitchen table and get to work, even if your effort does not transform into a masterpiece, you probably still had fun doing it.

With the internet at our fingertips there is no shortage of ideas or inspiration for anything you are looking to create — there are even step by step guides if you look hard enough. Also walking into craft stores can be a fun adventure in and of itself since there are so many supplies for any sort of project, you are bound to find something your home needs, or doesn’t need for that matter. Big box stores like Michaels and Walmart are sure to have what you are looking for. Neighbourhood dollar stores are also a great option to find supplies for cheap. Calgary based craft and supplies stores are also plentiful, especially if you want to support local business owners — Inglewood art supplies, The Scrap yard, The Knitting room and PM hobbycraft are all great places to get great advice and how to start on your crafting journey.

If you have the skills or the determination, crafting is easy with or without a hobby room, you just have to find the time to sit down and concentrate on the task at hand.

If you fancy yourself more of a D-I-Why-er, you can purchase tons of artisan crafts at a number of places. There are a ton of books out there that can also get you started in the crafting hobby, so check out the arts and crafts section of your favourite bookstore to find one that strikes your fancy.

Then there's the websites, and you  can easily get overwhelmed by what you'll find there.

The first that comes to mind though is Etsy, a website that focuses on handmade items, vintage finds and even certain art supplies from all over the world. Different artisans can create their own online “shop” and visitors can browse through a number of categories to find exactly what they are looking for. There is even a “craft supplies & tools” category. Purchasing from Etsy may
even be more economical than trying to create your vision yourself; customers are also able to connect directly with the artist to customize a piece or to ask any questions.

Other options that are closer to home are the local farmer’s markets around town. A lot of markets offer seasonal storefronts for artists to showcase their work surrounded by other local products. Farmer’s markets are a great place to shop for and find one-of-a-kind trinkets while also supporting the community.

Local boutique shops also carry home made or artisan products, one of New Home Living’s favourite stores is Created in Okotoks. These stores allow local artists to create their work and show it off amongst other local talent. There are a handful of boutique shops all over Calgary and surrounding areas, and there are even “shop local” events that happen throughout the year.

Being stuck inside during the chilly wintertime does not always have to be a bad thing, there are heaps of activities to keep you busy that don’t include Netflix.

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