Try Some "Craft Therapy"

The crafty way to relax, relieve stress

By Kristi Nelson
|  Wednesday, Sep 30, 2009  |  Updated 9:04 AM PDT
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Try Some "Craft Therapy"

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Knit your way to relaxation.

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Try Some "Craft Therapy"

Some North Texas women believe they're discovered the secret to stress relief and relaxation: "craft therapy."
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Some North Texas women believe they're discovered the secret to stress relief and relaxation: "craft therapy."

In Plano, a group of women of all ages called What Knots! meets every few weeks to work on a variety of knitting and crochet projects. The group is currently making items such as blankets, hats, wraps and even wine cozies.

"It's really probably more for stress release and something to do with your hands," said member Anne Burnett. 

She, and others, say it's the secret to relaxation. And all it takes -- for them, anyway -- is lots of yarn and needles.

"I think it's very relaxing, kind of like therapy for a lot of people," said Kristie Miller, the founder of What Knots.

The group organizes its meetings through Meetup.com.

"After working all day, you've got other pressures, other stress, and it's an escape," Miller said.

In Dallas, Archana Ganaraj has discovered her own crafty way of overcoming stress. A surgeon by day, Ganaraj likes to sew in her downtime.

"I've always had bad insomnia, and when I got pregnant, I completely quit sleeping," she said. "So I decided I needed to do something productive with that time and something that would help relax me so I could go back to sleep."

Ganaraj took sewing classes at Make in Dallas. She didn't expect to get hooked.

"It is fun," she said. "It's a good creative outlet to have."

Ganaraj said she thinks busy women should consider taking up a craft as a way to relax.

"I'm a breast cancer surgeon, so I work a lot of hours with people at the low point of their lives, and that tends to be pretty physically and emotionally draining at the end of the day," she said.

Stress can also make you sick, she said.

"Sewing may not be the right one for everybody, but I think everyone has some interests that really helps them forget about the day-to-day concerns and worries and lets them do something creative," Ganaraj said.

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