Good with Your Hands? Try These 11 Hobbies
If you are looking for something to do to fill that spare time you have on your hands, have you thought of taking up a hobby? This seems to be a common occurrence in recent years, some of which has been brought about by the pandemic because we tend to stay in more and away from crowds. Now you need something to keep yourself busy, but what is it you’d really like to do? Perhaps you might enjoy a hobby that will offer more than something to do to fill the time. There are so many things you can create and do that will give you years of enjoyment once they’re complete. Here are 10 hobbies you might try if you are good with your hands.
Woodworking is a fun hobby because there are so many ways to approach it. Some people build little ornaments while others build little models. Some people build custom boxes that will be carved or burned with intricate designs. Perhaps you would like to build furniture that you can sand, stain and seal. Woodworking does require specialty tools though, so keep that in mind when deciding what you’d like to do. Also, remember that there will often be sawdust that needs to be vacuumed, but if you have room in the garage or an outbuilding to set up a shop, you’re good to go.
Custom Rod Wrapping
Do you enjoy fishing? Perhaps you’d like to try your hand at custom wrapped rods. These can be done in a number of different designs, among which is the popular chevron wrap. Items you will need include a rod blank, reel seat, cork handles and of course a set of guides. You will use specialty threads for the design and fix them with epoxy. It is suggested that you use some kind of holder that will secure the blank while you do the wrapping. This is a hobby that will take a good deal of patience and a keen eye to get those threads placed closely. It might also be noted that custom wrapped fishing rods when done well can sell for a fairly high price tag!
Gun Making and Customizations
This is something you should do a little research on before making or customizing your own firearm. There are different laws state by state, so you will need to know what is legal in your neck of the woods. Once you’ve determined that, you can start looking for the equipment and parts you will need. For example, 80 lowers can be used to customize your own firearms because they’re blank with no serial number or identification on them. You will need to fabricate places for the trigger, safety and hammer, but with the right equipment, you can craft your own customized gun to your specifications.
Besides a pottery wheel and clay, you will need a kiln to bake the pottery in. If you are good with your hands, you can craft so many different things besides cups and flowerpots. Some people use their pottery wheel to ‘sculpt’ clay images to be baked and others make amazing Christmas ornaments with their clay and kiln. Those who develop skill with clay make amazing pipes they go on to decorate with feathers and leather straps. However, if you live in an area that stays hot most of the year, you will not want to run your kiln in the home since they bake at such high temperatures.
Speaking of flowerpots, have you tried your hand at macrame? If you are a seasoned fisherman then you probably already know many of the knots you will be using, so why not try your hand at making a hanging holder for those clay pots you’ve designed? Macrame can also be used for making anything from jewelry to wall hangings and it’s something that will keep your fingers busy for hours on end. If you want a stress-relieving hobby, macrame it is.
Perhaps you are artistic by nature. Many people like to sit and sketch people, animals, buildings and even landscapes. Why not take out the oils and canvas and set those sketches to color? Painting isn’t for everyone but if you have a good eye, you just might create some art that you’d be proud to hang or even give for gifts at Christmas. Some artists who take up painting as a hobby have been known to sell their best pieces at local galleries. What started as a hobby quickly became an income!
Beading is a fun hobby. While you might think that beading involves making necklaces, bracelets and earrings, there are so many other things you can do when you become adept at beading. Some people bead leather vests while others bead purses and bags. Beaded pillows make a lovely touch for your couch, so if you get the nylon cording and the beads, it only takes a little imagination before you are beading everything in sight.
There are several ways to approach jewelry making. Some artists melt down gold and silver to hand craft various pieces like pendants and earrings. Others work with beads to make custom jewelry and others make rings and other fine pieces with precious and semi-precious gems. Pearls, natural and cultured, are used in handcrafted jewelry as well. Whether you are dabbling in jewelry making because you have a passion for jewelry or are looking for a craft to sell at the next county fair or expo, jewelry always sells well and it’s something you just might enjoy doing to pass those idle hours. If nothing else, those necklaces and bracelets make lovely gifts that will surely be appreciated because you made them as a labor of love.
Garden Crafts and Hardscaping
Do you like to work outside in your garden? Whether you have a decorative garden filled with flowers and shrubs or a vegetable garden you plant each year, there are amazing crafts you can design to add a bit of character. Some artisans make hand painted rock people and others build fountains for the peaceful and meditative effect of running water. Maybe you’d like to build a birdbath or add hand painted garden gnomes. What about a hardscaped rock walkway or a portion of the garden done in decorative pebbles? In fact, gardening itself is a hobby and something you can do if you are good with your hands. Even if you are planting fruit, veggies, and herbs to eat, it’s still considered a hobby unless you run a commercial farm.
Cricut machines have become quite popular in recent years because of all the neat things you can do with them. In essence, a Cricut is a machine that is connected to your computer where you create designs to be cut by the machine. It works sort of like a printer in that you send a command to the machine that will then cut various fabrics to be used for your projects. These machines can cut anything from paper to vinyl and even fabrics to be ironed on to articles of clothing. Cricut also offers heat presses and mug presses so that you can create personalized mugs, mouse pads, purses, caps, and anything that can take sublimation ink or heat press transfers. It helps to be computer savvy, but even newbies can create interesting projects in Cricut’s Design Space software. The kinds of projects you can create are literally endless.
Needlework is actually comprised of several different crafts. While sewing, knitting, and crocheting are the most common crafts associated with needlework, there is also cross-stitch, tatting and embroidery as well. In fact, they even have embroidery machines on the market that you also use a computer to communicate designs to the machine in much the same was as a Cricut works. This is a fun hobby if you like to add custom designs to clothing, accessories and even little pictures you can frame and hang on walls. Decorative throw pillows are often embroidered and if you get really talented, you can do a bit of beading within your embroidery as well.
Whether you are recently retired or simply have time you’d like to fill with something fun to do, there is a hobby that is perfect for you. Just because you’ve never done any of the above hobbies and crafts, doesn’t mean you won’t be great at it, and it doesn’t mean you aren’t good with your hands. These hobbies are probably best for people who are good with their hands, but you’ll never know until you try. The best thing to do is start with something that interests you and remember not to invest a lot of money until you know if it’s something you’ll truly enjoy. With that said, remember that you will need some specialty tools, parts, machines, and materials, so keep that in mind when choosing the hobby you’d like to try.