SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Many people over the pandemic have started hobbies only to lose track of them over time.

What’s the key to learning a new hobby and holding on to it? These local crafters and craft stores have some advice on how to dig deep into a new hobby.

Clinton Edminster said his biggest tip is to connect with the local community and friends.

“Tying in with your local community and being able to meet people, find like-minded artists, and being able to create with friends is so much more exciting and more fun,” said Edminster, owner of Starlandia Supply, an arts and crafts store that sells new and reclaimed art supplies.

To help others get more involved in community events, Edminster created an online list of all the arts and crafts classes he could find that were happening in the fall of 2021.

“We actually do get a lot of requests from customers saying ‘Do you know where there is an art class going on or where can I learn more about this? Is there a teacher in your community?’” Jennifer Farago, an employee at the store, said.

This idea of connecting with the community is one that the crafters at Unwind Yarn and Gifts know well.

“So much of it is a community thing of being together,” Julia Timmons said, “just sitting around the table with people — it’s amazing.”

Timmons is one of a few crafters who attends weekly meetings at Unwind. She was knitting a thin scarf with Jan Carter, another crafter who attends the meetings, as the two discussed their tips.

“We meet every Friday,” Carter said.

She learned to knit from her grandmother when she was 9. Carter said her secret to keeping up with the craft is attending the group every week. She dropped knitting when she was in college, but going to Unwind for the past 10 years has helped her stay on track with the hobby.

“When we all get together and knit, then we’ll see something somebody else is doing and we’ll have a knit-along,” Carter said.

She had begun to make the scarf she was working on because she had seen Timmons doing it first.

Timmons and Carter also recommended that people starting new hobbies, especially knitting, take a class like the ones offered at Unwind.

Nel Adams, an employee at Unwind, agreed. She said that while some people can learn well using resources online, many benefit from having the ability to see a teacher in person. Adams even recommended finding a small group that you can meet with just to get input from another person.

“We do a lot of learning from each other,” Timmons added, “And that’s what keeps the group going.”

Finally, a tip from Edminster was that crafters should not be afraid of trying out new things with hobbies until they find ones that work well for them. This could be attempting something new within the hobby, like making a new type of quilt block or trying a different type of craft altogether.

“I mean, a big part of making and being creative and crafting is being able to experiment,” Edminster said.

He said the goal should be to have fun. Edminster believes that if you’re not having a good time pursuing a craft, don’t force yourself to continue with it just to say you did it.

From painting to knitting, there will always be something new you can try out instead.

You can view the Starlandia Supply Facebook page for more information on community art events as well as the store here. For more information on Unwind Yarn and Gifts, you can check out their website here.