By Cassidy Krygger
It wouldn’t come as a surprise to you when I tell you that 2020 has been one of the craziest years in recent memory.
But on the brighter side, this year has given us more than a Global Pandemic. It has gifted us the time to explore our more creative side in isolation. From baking sourdough bread to crocheting baby blankets and even making fabric face masks, people seem to be crafting now more than we have ever seen in the 21st century. Our hidden talents that have been buried under the weight of the modern world have been discovered in our solitude. And the benefits of it are plenty.
Crafting and finding ways to be creative is one of the most beneficial and easiest ways to relax.
From counting stitches, mixing colours and following patterns, our minds can quickly stop racing and start concentrating. The repetitive process of crafts such as knitting and crochet has been likened to relaxation techniques such as meditation. According to knitting therapist Betsan Corkhill when over 3,000 knitters were surveyed online, more than half responded that they feel ‘very happy’ after knitting and many of those that did it more often report a higher cognitive functioning. And crafting isn’t just good for your mental health, it can also benefit your bank balance as well.
Millions of people have lost their jobs throughout the world during the COVID-19 crisis, and many creatives are finding ways to put their hidden talents to good use.
Traditional physical markets may be closed for the foreseeable future but online shops such as Facebook Marketplace, eBay and Etsy have become the perfect place to sell. And online business is booming. According to Etsy CEO Josh Silverman, Etsy sales grew by 100% in April 2020 and sellers from around the world sold over 12 million handmade face masks with sales from the masks alone totalling over USD $133 million.
Etsy is a female-dominated world with 86% of sellers on Etsy are women. Silverman told marketplace.org that on Etsy “One woman with a sewing machine from her home can create a global empire.”
So with millions of people around the world feeling the mental and monetary benefits of becoming professional crafters, will this trend continue once the pandemic ends?
Or will the lure of modern busy-ness overtake us yet again? Only time will tell, but I for one hope it continues. Power to the woman who can take her imagination and turn it into an empire.