Art therapy has been found to be beneficial for a wide range of mental health issues. If your therapist has recommended art therapy yet you don't consider yourself artsy enough to use a blank canvas, consider doing needle art with hand stitch embroidery patterns. Hand stitch embroidery can be done just about anywhere since projects are easy to tuck away into a bag to take with you. Here are a few tips to help you get started.
If you know someone who does embroidery by hand, ask them if they would be willing to teach you. If not, locate your local craft stores and ask if they have any upcoming classes on hand stitch embroidery. If they don't, they likely have contact information for an embroidery teacher in the area. If you would rather learn in the comfort of your home or on your own, there are tutorials and videos online that may provide you with enough instructions for the basic stitches to help you get started.
You'll need supplies for your embroidery. You can use any fabric, but you'll need to use embroidery floss, which is a bit thicker than thread but not as thick as yarn. Embroidery floss comes in just about every color of the rainbow, which will enable you to be creative even when using patterns. The fabric for any projects you do will need to be held taut with an embroidery hoop, which will help keep the floss neat. Embroidery hoops are made of either wood or plastic and come in varying sizes. You'll also need embroidery needles and a small scissors. Last but not least, you'll need patterns and a clothes iron to transfer the patterns to your fabric.
There are a ton of patterns available for hand stitch embroidery. You can find them online and in craft stores. Most patterns are printed with heat transfer ink onto paper. All you need to do is use a clothes iron to transfer the ink to the fabric of your choice. Be sure to read and follow the pattern manufacturer's directions regarding temperature settings for the various types of fabrics before you begin. It's important to make sure the ink has fully transferred to the fabric before you pull the pattern away, so carefully lift one corner of the pattern while holding the rest of the pattern down to check before lifting the entire pattern off of the fabric.
To learn more, contact a company that provides hand stitch embroidery patterns.