Try your hand at a project or two and reap the benefits of art therapy. Here are eight activities you can try at home.
1. Create a Collage
Stuck on how to convey your artistic vision? Throw anything onto the paper and see where it leads you. Select poster board to allow ample room for letting your mind roam. Print images or cut them out of magazines. Choose pictures that inspire joy, such as relatives or places you've been. Arrange them in a variety of designs, and use high-quality glue to avoid peeling or rippling.
2. Design a Postcard
A postcard provides a therapeutic way for you to express your feelings without saying them. Purchase some cardstock and cut it into the standard postcard size. Draw an illustration on the front or glue something unique, such as a portion of a map. Adorn your card with ribbons, paint or sequins and write your message on the back. Keep it for yourself, or create another to send to a loved one.
3. Mold Clay Jewelry
Beautiful jewelry is one of the finer things in life, and making your own is something to be proud of. Unwind from a long day by gathering supplies for a fun jewelry-making session. Round up beads, chains and charms as well as nitty-gritty tools like wire cutters and pliers.
Create designs on polymer clay by using pigment-based markers — these avoid dissolving into the clay and blurring. Use an oven thermometer for baking your finished product to perfection. Keeping it in too long can scorch it, while a short bake time will leave it spongy.
4. Draw a Mandala
The beauty of creating a mandala lies in the freedom of expression. Use any medium — watercolor, colored pencils or oil paint — and put it on your preferred paper. Gather a few round objects to help you draw circles, or create them yourself using a ruler. Once you've established your circles, fill them with various patterns and colors. The key is to retain symmetry and repetition. These art techniques make up the core design of any mandala, and the repetitive movements can soothe stressed nerves.
5. Crochet a Stuffed Animal
Despite what others say, you're never too old for stuffed animals. And if you don't want to keep your creation for yourself, give it to a relative or friend. Giving gifts can improve your mood and encourage gratitude. Brighten someone else's spirits along with yours.
Make your stuffed animal out of virtually any material — use a pair of denim jeans, lightly worn socks or a t-shirt. Sew old clothing for a straightforward process, or crochet a pattern for a homemade look and feel.
6. Create a Mason Jar Pendant Light
Light up your home with a unique twist by designing pendant lights out of empty mason jars. You'll need a nail, hammer, pliers and shears in addition to the bulb and container. Use the light socket to trace a circle on the lid, and cut this shape out. Line this opening with smaller holes to allow ventilation — your jar will heat up quickly when the light is on. Put the socket through the opening and screw on the lightbulb. Choose an Edison lightbulb for a rustic look, or go with a modern LED.
7. Build a Twine Ball Lamp
Twine lamps embody refinement, but maybe you're reluctant to spend tons of money on them. Thankfully, making your own is cost-effective and stress-free. All you need is a balloon, yarn, paint and glue.
Inflate the balloon to your desired lamp size. Fill a bowl with clear-drying glue and dip the ball of yarn into it. Unravel the yarn and wrap it around the balloon until it's fully covered, then tie the rest of the thread to the balloon knot. Let it dry overnight before popping the balloon. Make it your favorite color using paintbrushes or spray paint.
8. Design Wallpaper Notebooks
Create a handy notebook using wallpaper, scrap paper and a stapler. Your scrap paper can be lined or graph paper, so long as it folds well. Cut your wallpaper to match the size and wrap it around the writing paper. Glue the front and back of the scrap paper to the wallpaper to reinforce it, or staple it for a finished piece.
Relax and Renew
Sit down with a fresh DIY project whenever you feel stress rearing its head. Your tension will melt when you participate in meaningful and fun activities. Grab a couple friends and turn it into a group stress-relief session.
Kacey Bradley is the lifestyle and travel blogger for The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully embrace herself with the knowledge of nature, the power of exploring other locations and cultures, all while portraying her love for the world around her through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing and inspiring posts. Along with writing for her blog, she frequently writes for sites like US Travel News, Thought Catalog, Porch, Tripping.com and more!
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