How I've Been Spending my Free Time (*Hint* New Hobby Alert)
My writing has been missing in action for a few weeks now, but for good reason. I’ve picked up a new hobby, Ukrainian embroidery. Yes, you read that correctly, Ukrainian embroidery. Last year I took an embroidery class at the Textile Arts Center in Brooklyn and a student in that class raved about an embroidery class she was taking at the Ukrainian Museum in Manhattan. Curious, I signed up for the class last Fall. I enrolled again this winter and I am obsessed with it! The class is taught by a lovely Ukrainian woman, Lubow, who has embroidered since the age of 4 (!!!). The beginners in the class work on a sampler (a sampler showcases various stitches). I finished my first sampler a few weeks ago and have started a second one. I practice in the evenings after work and on weekends. This is my first new hobby in a long time.
Do people have hobbies any more? I looked up the definition of hobby- “an activity done regularly in one’s leisure time for pleasure” according to Google. I’ve always been an avid reader and Giants baseball fan so I guess those count as hobbies. But something about embroidery feels more definitively a hobby. It is rewarding to make something with my hands and see the progress of my work. It is also so refreshing to participate in a pursuit that requires zero technology.
I wonder if my generation lacks hobbies. Prior to the embroidery class, the activities I did in my spare time were a means to an end- staying in shape, making money, networking. It is a welcome change to make something simply for the sake of being creative, with no end goal in mind. Thoughts such as “I should make and sell pillows/linens/wall-hangings” have popped into my mind while embroidering. Maybe I will one day, but for now it feels so lovely to create for the joy of it. Also, it is so fulfilling to have an activity that does not require a computer screen. I wonder if Facebook, Instagram, the Internet as a whole have damaged the pursuit of a hobby. I know for myself, prior to picking up this craft, I was spending more of my evenings in front a screen.
So, that is where I have been if you’ve been wondering about my blog absence- off embroidering like a madwoman, as silly as that sounds. I’d love to hear if you have an hobbies that are tech free!
Thanks for reading!
PS- You can check out my two samplers here and here and here.