If you love to sew, but want a change, you’ll like these alternatives to sewing. They’ll refresh your creativity and restore your sense of fun. They also offer you the chance to learn some new skills and even make new friends.
The following five hobbies give you something to do when you need a break from sewing. To help you decide which might be right for you, we also explain why we chose these hobbies.
Why We Choose These Hobbies
Sewing appeals to hobbyists for a number of reasons. Some like the idea of making or altering their own clothes so they’ll fit better. Others want to preserve traditions like quilting so they learn to sew. Still others enjoy the creative expression of it. Finally, some like it because it’s a way to build skills, like eye-hand coordination or problem-solving skills.
We chose hobbies for this list based on one or more of the above elements. For example, some hobbies appeal to those who like to preserve memories and traditions, like quilting does. Other hobbies develop eye-hand coordination.
Finally, sometimes we chose items for this list because they are completely different from sewing. These activities give you a change of pace and an opportunity to try something new.
1. Scrapbooking, Art Journaling and Bullet Journaling
People love book arts like scrapbooking, art journaling, and bullet journaling. These memory books preserve your history. In many respects, they preserve your memories in a more creative way than photography does.
That said, photography can play a big role in these hobbies. The difference lies in what you do with the photos. Scrapbookers often add patterned papers, stickers, odds and ends (like buttons), and more. These added elements decorate the photos in their scrapbooks.
Art journalers paint and draw scenes in their art journals. Mixed media elements, like snippets of poems, stencils, markers, and spray paint decorate the pages of an art journal. Think of an art journal as a diary that you both draw and write in.
Bullet journaling shares many similarities to scrapbooking and art journaling. It often differs, however, in that it’s intended as a scheduling tool. People write down their daily schedules, their goals, and more in a bullet journal.
That said, many bullet journals look like art. It’s your imagination that gives this book its creative oomph.
These book arts hobbies align with the quilter’s desire to preserve personal and family history.
2. Puppetry and Doll Crafts
The skills required for puppetry and doll making overlap with sewing in a couple of ways. First, if you make soft-bodied puppets and dolls, you’ll have to sew the bodies together. Second, even if you don’t hand-sew the bodies together, you may want to make clothing for your creations.
However, many puppet and doll makers work with completely different materials to build their dolls. These materials include polymer clays, paper mache, and wood carving.
Additionally, marionnettes require the puppet maker to construct a wood and string pulley system. This system allows the doll to move. These dolls and puppets usually require some sort of metal armature also to fortify the doll’s limbs.
These crafts appeal to people who like to sew for several reasons. There is some sewing involved in some puppet and doll crafts, so it’s a chance to broaden your sewing skills. Additionally, the more advanced doll and puppet designs require a great deal of eye-hand coordination, creativity, and problem-solving.
3. Baking and Dessert Making
Who can forget the smell of pumpkin pie baking on a crisp fall afternoon? Or maybe the taste of freshly churned homemade ice cream on a hot summer day? If you’re a total foodie, then dessert-making hobbies might appeal to you.
If you like to sew because you like the sensorial aspects of sewing, baking is a perfect alternative. Both sewing and baking have a strong sensorial element to them. Consider kneading dough for cookies or the feel of material between your fingers.
Sewing and baking also appeal to your visual sense. Just think of how appealing a luscious strawberry pie looks in a pie case, and you’ll understand.
What baking and dessert making have that sewing doesn’t is the taste factor. Baking and dessert making also provide you with a social element.
That is, you usually share your creations with others. With the exception of quilt making, sewing remains a fairly solitary pursuit.
When you bake something, you bond with the people you cook for. As far as alternatives for sewing go, this is a pretty yummy one!
4. Explore the Visual Arts With Painting and Drawing
You only need to look at the cave paintings in Lascaux, France to know that the desire to make marks resides deep within the human soul. People have painted and drawn for literally thousands of years.
These days, an abundance of art supplies removes the need to paint and draw on cave walls. In the simplest form, all you need is a sketchbook to start drawing. More advanced artists gravitate toward painting on canvas or wood.
Traditional drawing and painting materials run the gamut. To draw, you’ll need pencils, either graphite or charcoal, plus erasers and some blending tools. Markers, oil pastels, conte crayons, and colored pencils add color to the drawing process.
If you’d rather paint, oil paint, along with some sort of medium, like linseed oil or galkyd, gets you started. For many artists, oil paint has one big drawback. It takes a while to dry.
To solve this issue, you can start a new painting or drawing while you wait for your masterpiece to dry. You also have the option to paint in a fast-drying medium like acrylic.
Painting, drawing, and sewing all require high levels of concentration and good eye-hand coordination. If you want to replicate that aspect of sewing, painting and drawing might be your thing.
Papier-mâché counts among the simplest hobbies to learn. Yet, what you can create from papier-mâché can be quite stunning. In its most traditional form, you’d combine flour and water to make the paste. Newspaper provides you with the building materials.
Like puppetry, more elaborate papier-mâché creations require some sort of support. These supports allow you to make sculptures from your papier-mâché.
With puppetry, armatures provide the supports. With papier-mâché, supports can come from balloons, toilet paper rolls, and molds to name but a few. From these basic building blocks arise masks, animal sculptures, and more.
As far as alternative hobbies to sewing go, this one can be quite messy. However, what it lacks in neatness, it makes up for it in fun!