Cross stitch isn’t only about crafting something beautiful. For us, it’s about crafting wellness. Here are some of the amazing benefits of cross stitch, and why we love creating kits to put out into the world to help people:

Cross stitch reduces stress and anxiety

Cross stitching can be very therapeutic due to the rhythmic and soothing nature of repetitive stitching. This can feel like an active meditation and a mindfulness practice, bringing our focus to the present moment and reducing the noise and worries occupying our minds. The wonderful result of this can be reduced stress and anxiety, having a positive impact on our mental health and wellbeing. Mindfulness not only calms the mind, but studies by the UK Royal United Hospitals Bath and Home Sewing Association have found that cross stitch helps us physically by reducing cortisol, and lowering our heart rate and blood pressure. A more relaxed mind and body is a powerful combination and one of the main reasons we love cross stitch here at Cosy Stitching Co.

Cross stitch increases happiness

Studies by the UK Royal United Hospitals have shown that cross stitch increases dopamine and serotonin, resulting in a happier mood and combating depression. Not only is the process of seeing a design slowly unfold in front of you uplifting, but the end result and sense of accomplishment when you have completed the project is incredibly satisfying. Whether you proudly display your cross stitch pattern or generously gift it to someone, seeing the final handmade product come together from scratch after a lot of patience brings about a well-deserved reward and can also boost self-esteem and confidence.

Cross stitch allows us time away from screens

In today’s world, it can be challenging to quiet the mind and take ourselves away from technology and social media. Cross stitch creates a space where we can be away from screens, allowing us to relax and unwind with a peaceful and creative project.

Cross stitching boosts creativity

Cross stitch can be completed however we like, encouraging innovative thinking and creativity when working through patterns. Anyone can design a cross stitch pattern, or change the colours of an existing design using up their stash of threads to make it their own. This is a great way to express ourselves through a creative outlet. There are an array of designers allowing stitchers to choose whatever style suits their personality best. You might choose to cross stitch an item of clothing to give it a new lease of life, stitch an accessory such as a bookmark or create a decoration for Christmas – the possibilities for self-expression are endless.

Cross stitch is a community

The cross stitching community is vast and incredibly welcoming. For those that enjoy it as a hobby, there are memberships, clubs, events, workshops and stitch-a-longs all year round. Work in progress and completed designs, tips and tricks and more are shared in online forums and on Instagram, allowing us to engage with like-minded stitchers with a common passion. For those running cross stitch businesses many business owners promote community over competition and encourage and support one another. This all reduces loneliness and isolation and increases a sense of belonging.

Cross stitch keeps the mind active

Following patterns and concentrating on each stitch gives our brain a challenge, helping to  improve cognitive function and fine motor skills. This improves our patience, concentration, ability to remember and process information, and hand-eye coordination for precise tasks. Studies have shown that cross stitching can even help the brain re-establish neural pathways, helping with cognitive rehabilitation for those recovering from a stroke or brain damage, which really is amazing!

Cross stitch can reduce pain

We have read that some cross stitchers use the activity as a form of pain management for health conditions they suffer from. Cross stitch can be a brilliant way to get through a medical treatment or recover from an injury if needing to stay on bed rest or if mobility is limited. Much like becoming engrossed in a brilliant book, cross stitch allows a gentle option to those who wish to be distracted by a creative and rewarding project.

In summary, cross stitching is a therapeutic self-care tool which can improve mental and physical wellbeing, whilst being a thoroughly enjoyable craft. Take care of yourself and create a beautiful handmade heirloom, and let us know whether you feel any of these (or other) benefits in the process!