Easy Arts and Crafts to Get You Through the Maine Winter

I love my outdoors time as much as the next Colby student, but the sub-freezing temperatures and growing COVID numbers have been pushing me further and further under my cozy covers. With more of my time being spent in bed, I’ve been trying my hand at a variety of seemingly entertaining and minimally labor-intensive activities. My endeavors have taught me some neat tricks, provided me with various woolly accessories, and left my roommates showered in DIY presents and projects. Here is my advice on the easiest and craftiest at-home projects to tackle when the winter weather keeps you indoors. 

  1. 1. Knitting

    Maybe some of you guys also went to a weird high school where knitting in the hallways became a trend for two weeks and then suddenly vanished, leaving you with a couple scarfs and some seemingly unnecessary knitting skills. Whether or not you have as much past experience as I do, knitting is the ideal calming, simple pastime  for you to pick up this winter. You’ll never have to buy presents again, you can do it while you watch your favorite show on Hulu, and you’ll automatically become the coolest kid in your dorm. As my roommate says, “girls with grandma hobbies are hot.” 

  2. 2. Making a Puzzle

    This process is way easier than it sounds - I promise. Recently, I decided it would be fun to have a puzzle version of my roommates and I that we could put together and hang on the common room wall, so I’m in the process of making it happen. The first step was to trace and paint our image on a cardboard based cutout. Next traced jigsaw shaped pieces across the painting, grabbed a serrated bread knife and cut it up. I’ll admit, it looks homemade, but I’d say that’s the best part (besides the process of making it).

  3. 3. Crocheting

    Over the holidays I decided to teach myself how to crochet via YouTube and Reddit. My first project was going to be stockings for each of my family members. I’ll admit, it was a slightly ambitious idea given my lack of experience in crocheting, and, after about three hours of trying to do a circular stitch, I gave up and switched to crocheting a square. If you take it slow and give yourself a fighting chance with a realistic first project, crocheting is another great way to mindlessly use your hands and produce homemade gifts this winter. 

  4. 4. Making Friendship Bracelets

    I probably spent more time making friendship bracelets in fourth grade than I did in the classroom. I can confidently say the same thing about this Jan Plan. I’ve been experimenting with string, beads, and gimp. So far I’ve found string bracelets to be the easiest, beads the most fun, and gimp the quickest. I definitely recommend watching some YouTube videos to find new patterns and styles to learn. Friendship bracelets are a fun way to decorate wrists, water bottles, and key chains! 

  5. 5. Resin-Based Earrings

    This is my personal favorite because of the beautiful final products that this craft produces. The first step in resin earring making is to purchase liquid resin and a mold or two. They come in different shapes and sizes, allowing for personalization and customization of your designs! First, you pour the liquid resin into the mold. Second, you can add any kind of decorations for a personalized touch. These can include dyes, plants, flowers, glitter, or any other inserts into the resin. You can also attach multiple pieces together for a 3D style. Last step is to add earring backs and rock your homemade jewelry! These serve as great gifts that will shock your friends and family when they find out you made them yourself. 

I hope that each of these activities provide easy and enjoyable ways to stay inside and protect the people around you this winter. With cases rising, temperatures dropping, and boredom coming, I know I can’t wait to cozy up with some tea, cookies, and DIY crafts!