I often hear people say that they "aren't crafty." However, I think anyone can learn to craft.
I have followed Sophie of Wallflower Weavings on Instagram for awhile. I love the rich texture, color choices, and detail in her work. Just looking at the images online feels therapeutic to me. Therefore, I was thrilled when I saw a post mentioning that she finds weaving to be healing. I asked if she would be willing to do an interview, and she generously shared her thoughts on the mental health benefits of weaving.
When I did the research for my book, Crochet Saved My Life, one of the things that I learned about was how crochet could help people in various stages of age-related memory loss. A recent article about art therapy in a Chicago senior community shows that any type of craft can offer similar benefits.
There aren't many (any?) books out there on how weaving improves mental health. Likewise, you won't find a lot of writing about the mental health benefits of crochet, knitting, embroidery, woodworking, scrapbooking, or any other crafts. Nevertheless, people are writing about how crafting heals.
Emily Esfahani Smith has authored a compelling book titled, "The Power of Meaning: Crafting a Life that Matters." This book isn't literally about hands-on crafting. Instead, it is a well-researched guide to finding meaning in life. However, her research can be combined with research into how crafting heals to help us in crafting meaning for our lives.
I recently had the opportunity to compare two different studies into the health benefits of crochet. I was thrilled to see that the two studies, completed entirely independently of one another, turned out similar results. This gives us great insight into the leading benefits...
One of the key ways that crafting heals us is by interrupting the ruminations of the mind. Rumination is a common symptom of depression. Therefore, interrupting rumination can help reduce depression.
Craft therapy and art therapy have many similarities. They utilize a number of the same strategies. People experience many of the same mental health benefits from each of them.