A New Thing

It’s not like I don’t already have plenty of hobbies to entertain me while in isolation, yet some instinct or unconscious wisdom told me that there’s no better distraction than learning something new but not too complex. What popped into my mind when I considered what would fit the bill was temari.

They are small, so I wouldn’t be wondering where the heck I’d put them later. They’re not an overly big commitment in time, but enough work to keep me distracted for more than five minutes. They use materials I have at hand already. They’re pretty and could be nice gifts. And they don’t, if done in small sessions, bother my hands or back.

Just watch a few YouTube videos, I told myself. Maybe buy a book. Well, it turns out books on temari are rather expensive, and the videos mostly focus on getting started, not what you do once you have your grid marked. The most valuable resource I found was temarikai.com.

Even so, there’s a fair bit of ‘work it out for yourself’ involved. Stare at the picture a lot. Take a deep breath and start stitching. My first ball is a bit wonky, but came out much better than I expected.

My second was partly done during a Zoom meeting of the Sweary Stitchers Craft Group, which turned out to be a good social crafting project. And there were requests for balls, if I continued making them.

It’s not good tv crafting, unless the program only requires the occasional glance. Audio books and podcasts would do nicely. It’s a good portable craft, too, though with the same risk with losing needles as with embroidery, and it’s not really suitable to stitch while in a moving car or train.

I’m glad I set myself the challenge to try something new, and found this little art form. I think there will be more temari in my future.