Mindful Craft Ideas for Relaxation

Mindful Craft Ideas for Relaxation

Engaging in relaxing crafts can be an excellent way to unwind, relieve stress, and express creativity. Creativity and craft ideas for relaxation allow you to express yourself artistically, stimulate your imagination, and encourage you to think outside the box.

These craft ideas for relaxation are great for anxiety and relieving stress, leaving you with a sense of accomplishment. Focusing on a craft project can divert attention from everyday emotions and worries and provide a calming effect. It can also promote mindfulness by helping you stay present in the moment.

embroidery on a vintage photo

Yes, that’s me at an Etsy-sponsored craft party many moons ago. We were embroidering on vintage photographs.

Craft can also help with cognitive stimulation, involving various cognitive processes such as problem-solving, planning, and decision-making.

These engaging craft activities can keep your mind active and sharpen your cognitive abilities, thus enabling you to relax.

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13 Mindful Craft Ideas for Relaxation

There are so many types of hobbies and crafts you can do that are creative and relaxing; you just need to find one that suits you. Even if you are not particularly creative or artistic, there are so many crafts where you can follow an easy process, such as creating an indoor Zen garden or filling in a painting by using numbers.

These are some craft ideas for relaxation that are good for the mind and can help with mental health:

Try a Coloring Page

Coloring pages, adult coloring books, and kids’ books have gained popularity for their therapeutic benefits. Coloring intricate designs or patterns requires sustained attention and concentration.

adult coloring book for relaxation

Photo source: Shutterstock via PicMonkey.

Choose designs such as mandalas or detailed adult coloring pages to color. You can color them with colored pencils, markers, or even watercolors.

Learn To Knit

Knitting is a fabulous needlework craft that can be calming and meditative. Learning to knit can be a fabulous craft once you have mastered it. Remember when I needed “knitted ribbon” for a wreath project?

Knitted ribbon for a winter wreath

Photo source: Sadie Seasongoods

Knitting evolves using wool woven around two needles to create patterns that knit together. Start with a simple scarf, and you can learn to master more patterns, such as blankets or clothes.


If you can knit, you can also learn to crochet using just one crochet needle and some wool. It resembles knitting but uses a single hook instead of two needles. The crochet hook is used to pull loops of yarn through other loops, creating stitches that form a chain and build upon each other to create various patterns and textures.

Crocheting allows for the creation of various items such as blankets, scarves, hats, sweaters, and amigurumi (small stuffed toys). It offers endless possibilities for creativity, with different stitch combinations, colors, and types of yarns to achieve different effects.

Learning to crochet can be a productive hobby, allowing individuals to express their creativity while making beautiful and functional handmade items. It is relatively easy to start, too, with many online tutorials- making it one of the best craft ideas for relaxation.


Scrapbooking can be a therapeutic and rewarding craft. You can also create personalized photo albums to treasure and keep forever. Scrapbooking is the art of preserving your photos and memories in an artistic way using paper and embellishments.

Learn how to scrapbook and gather your favorite photos, memorabilia, and decorative papers to create memory scrapbook pages. You can add scrapbooking photos onto large 12 x12 papers or choose smaller books and journals.

craft paper storage in a vintage photo album

Photo source: Sadie Seasongoods.

Scrapbooking is great for making and giving as gifts too. You could create a wedding album for a couple for their special day or even a baby scrapbook album for the parents of a newborn.

There are so many scrapbooking ideas to help you create your dream pages, and it is a fantastic way to relax and unleash your creativity.

Learn To Paint

Painting is a great craft idea for relaxation. You can try many different painting activities, such as watercolor, acrylics, or paint-by-numbers. 

I used to love taking a paint project out on the back porch (like these faux Cloisonne vases). Such a soothing activity for me (and Cottonball)!

Painting a clear glass vase to look like a Cloisonne vase

Photo source: Sadie Seasongoods.

Painting by numbers kits is super easy with a pre-printed canvas with numbered sections corresponding to specific paint colors. It’s a relaxing way to create beautiful art without the need for drawing skills.

Practice Embroidery

Embroidery is a naturally therapeutic craft that has been around for centuries. Embroidery allows you to create intricate designs with needle and thread on fabrics. Using embroidery thread, a pattern, a needle, and some cotton, you can bring it to life on textiles such as cushions or clothes.

upcycling ideas for unique embroidery and cross stitch

Have a Go at Paper Crafting

Paper crafting can be a calming and creative hobby. All you need is some paper, scissors, and often some paper glue.

Upcycling the vintage greeting cards with file folders for blank greeting cards

Photo source: Sadie Seasongoods.

Many types of paper crafts exist, such as quilling, origami, card making, and scrapbooking.

  • Origami involves folding paper to create intricate three-dimensional shapes and objects.
  • Quilling uses thin strips of paper that are rolled, shaped, and glued to form decorative designs.
  • Scrapbooking combines photos, paper cut-outs, and embellishments to create personalized memory albums or journals.
  • Paper cutting, or Kirigami, involves intricate cutting and folding techniques to produce detailed designs and pop-up cards.
  • Decoupage and collages involve using magazine cutting or patterned papers to create unique art pieces.
  • Paper mache utilizes strips or pulp of paper mixed with glue or paste to create sculptural forms.

Additionally, there are paper weaving, decoupage, paper sculpture, paper bead-making, greeting card making, and various other techniques that showcase the versatility and beauty of papercraft. Almost all of these paper crafts require concentration which can take your mind off everyday worries and help you relax.

Paint Mandala Stones

Mandala Stones and rock painting is a great hobby that is easy to do even if you are not creative. You can paint smooth stones with intricate mandala designs using just a paintbrush, some paint, and a series of dots.

painting mandala stones for relaxation

Photo source: Shutterstock via PicMonkey.

The repetitive patterns and calming colors can be soothing and create beautiful decorative pieces. You can also paint your own artwork, such as inspiring quotes, affirmations, or words, onto the rocks too.

Try Candle Making

Creating your own candles has become a much more popular hobby allowing you to experiment with scents, colors, and shapes. The process of melting wax, adding fragrance, and pouring it into molds can be quite relaxing, plus you achieve a fabulous end product that you can gift to a loved one.

melting soy wax flakes

Photo source: Sadie Seasongoods.

Zen Doodle

Zen Doodle, also known as Zendoodle or Zen Doodling, is a form of meditative art that involves creating intricate and repetitive patterns, shapes, and designs.

It is a free-flowing and spontaneous style of drawing, where the focus is on the process rather than the end result. This means you can relax and not worry about the result, which in turn encourages relaxation and mindfulness. It allows for creative expression without the pressure of achieving perfection, promoting a sense of calm, concentration, and stress relief.

Through Zen Doodle, individuals can tap into their creativity, explore their artistic instincts, and find a peaceful and meditative state of mind. All you need is a pen, marker or a pencil. You can even create digital doodles on a tablet like an iPad.

Create a Zen Garden

A Zen garden, also known as a Japanese rock garden or dry landscape garden, is a minimalist and contemplative garden style that originated in Japan. It is designed to evoke a sense of tranquility, harmony, and inner peace.

craft ideas for relaxation

Photo source: Shutterstock via PicMonkey.

Zen gardens typically feature carefully arranged rocks, gravel, or sand raked into patterns representing water or waves and sparse vegetation such as moss or small shrubs. The design principles of a Zen garden often incorporate asymmetry, simplicity, and natural elements to create a serene and meditative atmosphere. These gardens are intended to be viewed and contemplated, providing a space for reflection, mindfulness, and relaxation.

The process of making a Zen garden can also be very peaceful and relaxing too. You can create your own Zen garden at home in a small space, such as a pot or window box.

Try Junk Journaling

Why not try your hand at junk journaling, a creative form of art journaling that involves using a variety of found or recycled materials to create unique and eclectic journals? It blends several craft ideas for relaxation, including scrapbooking and old-fashioned decoupage.

The term “junk” refers to using random, everyday items you may throw away, like ticket stubs, magazine cutouts, fabric scraps, old book pages, packaging materials, and other ephemera. These items are combined with traditional journaling elements like writing, drawing, painting, and collage to create visually rich and artistic pages. It allows for creative freedom and experimentation, and the process often focuses on self-expression, storytelling, and capturing memories in an artistic and unconventional way.

Junk journals can serve as creative outlets, therapeutic tools, or personal keepsakes while incorporating and repurposing everyday objects.


Macramé is a versatile form of textile art that involves creating patterns and designs using various knotting techniques.

Fishing net for glass fishing floats as beach decor

Photo source: Sadie Seasongoods.

Originating from ancient civilizations, macramé gained popularity in the 1970s as a decorative craft. It typically involves knotting using your hands with cords, such as cotton or jute, to create knots that form patterns. You can create fringes or intricate structures like plant hangers, wall hangings, or jewelry.

The art of macramé allows for endless creativity, combining different types of knots, colors, and textures to produce beautiful and unique handmade pieces. Its resurgence in recent years has made it a trendy and popular craft that enables individuals to express their artistic flair and bring a bohemian charm to their homes or personal style.

This article originally appeared on Wealth of Geeks.



stress relief through crafting

Photo source: Shutterstock via PicMonkey.

Donna Vallance
Website | + posts

Donna Vallance is a Craft, Travel, Hair and lifestyle creator at Likelovedo as well as Cruising For All. Donna draws and designs her own craft files which readers can download for crafts such as scrapbooking, plus empowers and teaches people with curly hair how to get the most of their curls and have hair that looks amazing. She also shares her travels from around the world.


  1. Cathy Razor says

    Would you be willing to hold an online “crafting circle”, via Zoom or other such app? I think it would be great to get a group of like-minded crafters and artists together to all work at the same time on projects, whether it is the same type of project or something to be left to the creative talents of the crafter? I think it would be great fun.

  2. Hi Sadie!
    I just want you to know, I really love your blog, and I especially loved this article connecting creativity with healthy self-care.
    Thank You!

    • That just warms my soul to hear that, Debby- thank you! I’ve started syndicating other bloggers’ posts (with their explicit permission and through Google white-hat policies), and this one really struck me. I’m so glad to hear how people have connected with it, just like I did!

  3. I do needlepoint, word search puzzles, photography, write poetry, adult coloring, and genealogy.

    • I love word (and number) games, too! I’m so glad you are enjoying these blog posts that I’m syndicating- other bloggers write them and give me permission to host them on my website.

  4. Thanks Sadie , I do quite a few of these and they are really relaxing and you have given me some more ideas here x

    • I’m so glad you enjoyed this post, Angela! I’m trying something new with my blog- hosting blog posts written by other authors that still fit my general theme (crafting, thrifting, upcycling, decor, DIY, etc.).

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