I’m a big do-it-yourselfer, and also need to always be occupied (I’m easily bored). I multi-task while watching television at night, for example; I usually have a crochet, knitting, or tatting item in my lap. These hobbies not only provide me with something to keep my hands busy, but also give me something useful when I’m done!
Many people, when they begin crocheting or knitting, use yarn. It works up quickly and you have a finished item relatively fast. The problem with this is that yarn can be very expensive, and people don’t truly appreciate the work that goes into what you make and might ask you to “make me a scarf!” not realizing it might take 20 hours of your time and a solid $50 if they want a high quality yarn. That’s why I never make items by request. Instead, I make something and then give it away. I make so much however, that I slowed myself down by using thread instead–and the best part is thread is a LOT less expensive than yarn.
Thread crochet and knitting usually means lace. While there are many machines that make lace and people may continue to undervalue your work not realizing how much work went into the project, it will keep you occupied longer and be much cheaper–you’ll be spending just a few dollars on string instead of $50-$100 on a yarn item.
This particular hobby also helps keep you sharp–you have to pay attention and remember where you are in a pattern, or will will soon learn what the term “frogging” means: that’s the process of unraveling all of your work to the place where you made a mistake, and then starting all over again!
I have been knitting and crocheting for decades, and in recent years began tatting; I and even tried something called nålebinding once. I started by following yarn patterns and then moved on to creating my own patterns as I got the hang of it. Here are some of the items I’ve made.