Slow Living Hobbies: How to Cultivate Slow Even with Your Hobbies

So you’re adapting to a slow living lifestyle and you want to pick up slow living hobbies but don’t know where to begin? I’ve got you covered!

I’ve been living a slower lifestyle since becoming chronically ill, although not necessarily by choice in the beginning, I now really enjoy a slower life and part of that includes hobbies.

I’ve found that slow hobbies allow you to exercise patients, slow the body and mind, calm the body and mind, and almost be like a meditation session.

slow living hobbies

Slow Living Hobbies

If you’re new to the idea of slow living and aren’t sure what that means, let’s break it down.

To me slow living is more of a intentional state of mind and less about slowing every part of your life down. I see slow living as being intentional and present in the big and small moments of your life. Consuming less, slowing your activities, your mind, your body, finding the gratitude, living a simpler life is how I live a slow lifestyle.

Let’s look at what Google says about slow living. 

what is slow living

What does slow living look like

  • Slowing your approach to daily life
  • Slowing your work life, not glamourizing multi-tasking and overwhelm
  • Slow hobbies, taking up a hobby that allows you to be fully present in that moment
  • Mindfulness in your moments
  • Gratitude in your small and big moments and wins
  • Slowly consuming a book instead of rushing to consume a set number of books per month or year
  • Making slow and intentional living a priority so much so that you’re willing to say no to things if they don’t align with that goal

slow hobby ideas

Slow Hobbies

One of my favorite ways of incorporating slow living into my life is with hobbies. Specifically hobbies that allow me to be intentional, slow, and meditative. And believe it or not, there are quite a few such hobbies that are fairly accessible and easy to pick up and enjoy.

Let’s look at some slow hobby ideas

  • hand embroidery
  • crochet
  • knitting
  • painting
  • drawing
  • card games
  • reading
  • baking
  • coloring
  • sewing
  • journaling
  • writing
  • jewelry making
  • audio books (pairs well with a hand-on hobby)
  • wood working
  • cross stitch
  • needle punch
  • and likely much more!

My personal favorite slow hobbies are the fiber arts, so embroidery, crochet, thread painting and more.

hand embroidery

Hand Embroidery 

Not to be confused with machine embroidery – hand embroidery is the art of taking needle, thread, and fabric and hand-stitching an artful design for art or decoration on a functional piece, such as clothing. It requires much patience, as it’s a very slow process but the payoff can be so satisfying and beautiful in the end.

What you’ll need before you start any embroidery project.

carbon transfer paper (optional)
water or heat soluble marker (recommended)
embroidery floss (DMC or affordable options on Amazon)
embroidery snips (recommended)

Common stitches used in many embroidery patterns, below.

satin stitch
french knot
back stitch
straight stitch
woven wheel stitch
leaf stitch
long and short stitch

Read more about hand embroidery and beginner embroidery projects here, on my site.


Some favorite hand embroidery resources

botanical embroidery

paint with thread

freshly stitched

Woodland Stitches

thread folk

lovely little embroideries



I find crochet to be easier for beginners to pick up and understand more quickly. At least that was the case with me. Crochet is a great slow hobby and allows you to create toys, clothes, blankets, and such. It works up fairly quick and allows you many options with thickness of yarn, which allows you to either make super small little items – such as little toys – or super thick and lush items – such as blankets. But what I love most about crochet is that, once you learn it well, you can sit back and watch TV or a listen to an audio book while crocheting. It can be very relaxing.

What you’ll need before starting a crochet project

  • yarn
  • crochet hooks
  • stitch markers
  • stitch counter
  • pattern

Common stitches in crochet

  • single crochet
  • double crochet
  • half double crochet
  • treble stitch

If you’d like to learn how to crochet, I recommend YouTube – it’s free and full of tutorials. You can also find patterns on Etsy or on free blogs by searching something along the lines of crochet patterns – or the specific pattern you’d like, such as “crochet blanket patterns”.

A few great crochet pattern options for beginners

Just click the image below to be taken to the paid pattern.

Easy beginner-friendly blanket project. Click the image below.

Easy crochet cozy pattern

Crochet washcloth pattern

You can find more crochet projects on places like YouTube, Etsy, or on blogs. If you’re new to crochet I’d look for easier projects that don’t require color changes (or the project would look good altered to exclude color changes), only have one or two stitches, and has a really solid pattern – with lots of pictures or a video. And if you’re a complete newbie to crochet, I’d recommend watching very basic videos on YouTube on the different stitches: single crochet, double crochet and half double crochet.

Some favorite crochet blogs: Mama in a Stitch, Easy Crochet, and Sewrella

Some crochet books to consider

Modern crochet pattern book

Crochet to calm book

25 simple and cozy crochet blankets

coloring pages


Adult coloring was all the rage a few years ago but even though it has died down a bit, it’s still a great slow hobby to get into. There are so many beautiful coloring books and coloring pages available to color and many different types of coloring themes. You’re bound to find something you like.

What you’ll need before coloring

  • colored pencils
  • crayons
  • markers
  • coloring book
  • coloring pages

Coloring book categories

You can find just about any type of theme you may be interested in. Some coloring themes you may be interested in:

  • flowers
  • animals
  • ocean
  • forest
  • cuss words
  • inspirational words
  • food

YouTube has a lot of fun videos about coloring. Not just how to color (I know that sounds silly but many colorists take their art very seriously) but watching others color their pages, which can be a fun way to feel connected to community while you’re also coloring your page. You can find free coloring blogs on Google as well. Trust me when I say that you’ll fall down the rabbit hole of adult coloring if you go searching.

Coloring books and pages

Print from home pages


Enchanted coloring book

101 Flower coloring book

Worlds of Wonder

Colored pencils I use and like for coloring books

Castle colored pencils

In Closing

I think in the end, slow living hobbies should produce a calming, enjoyable, laid back experience so choosing a hobby that facilitates those feelings should be the end goal. If you pick up crochet and it’s frustrating and too much counting stitches for you then don’t force it, move onto another on this list. If hand embroidery just isn’t your thing, pick up painting and give that a go.

The hobbies should always be a fun experience so choosing and sticking with something fun and relaxing is key. A slow hobby is also a hobby that will typically take more time and patience, so keep that in mind, but no matter – it should always be a fun experience.


slow living hobbies

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XOXO, Nell