Try a New Hobby: Books to Get You Started

A hobby can be so much more than a way to pass the time. As a longtime knitter, I find inspiration, friendships and even a sense of peace in my craft. Is there a hobby you're interested in exploring in the new year? These books will help you get started.

Knitting and Crochet

What better time than January to get started with these cozy crafts? Let the chilly air inspire you to start—and finish—your first hat or scarf. Interested in picking up the needles? Check out 60 Quick Knits for Beginners, part of the 60 Quick Knits series, for accessible but interesting projects. If a crochet hook is more your style, try Complete Crochet Course, which Booklist called a "do-it-all reference" for beginning and experienced crocheters.

See all our knitting books and crochet books.

Paper Crafts

Paper cutting, paper flowers, paper embroidery: There are more beautiful, intricate paper craft trends than I can count. But classic origami will always have my heart. I love that you can do it anywhere with minimal supplies and then have a sweet extra to add to a gift. Or you can mix it up by tucking a small surprise into one of Tomoko Fuse's Origami Boxes. Publishers Weekly calls this step-by-step book "an excellent introduction to an ancient art form."

See all our paper crafts books.

Sewing and Quilting

Dreaming of a handmade wardrobe or a quilt worthy of becoming a family heirloom? Get started toward your goal with one of these books. Aimed at stitchers of all levels, The Sewing Book is an image-heavy reference (including a glossary) for exploring techniques and tools. How to Quilt, subtitled "Techniques and Projects for Complete Beginners," has nine simple projects, each designed to help you practice a different technique.

See all our sewing books and quilting books.

Drawing and Painting

Did you love drawing or painting as a kid? Wonder what it would be like to try again? The Complete Artist's Manual covers choosing a subject, composition and exploring color—all with examples from other artists. If Chicago's majestic skyline and unique neighborhoods inspire you, pick up Sketch City, which brings together cityscape drawings, tips and techniques from 25 artists working in cities around the world.

See all our drawing books and painting books.


Do you ever look at handmade furniture and think, "How do they do that?" Yes? Me too. If that's a skill you're interested in building (pun intended), Woodworking teaches basic skills for beginners using color photos and easy projects. 

See all our woodworking books.

Other Hobbies

Interested in another hobby? We have books on a whole range of topics, including:

What craft are you planning to try? Let us know in the comments. Happy crafting!

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