New Year's Revolution! A return to the natural way of things.

The last few years have certainly been challenging: Covid and our collective health as a society; climate change and our impact on the planet; the cost-of-living crisis and our fear of how we will make ends meet; all are constant reminders of how vulnerable we are. We now spend a lot more time thinking about how we can lessen our impact on the world and how we can ensure that the world’s impact on us is no longer a negative one. We’re looking at ways to return to more natural ways of living.

Herbal life. Image credit: Monika Ensenberger
This is the time of year when our thoughts turn to the next 12 months and how things might be different. Many of us fall into the old habit of setting 'New Year's Resolutions' which, in most cases, are doomed to fail. There are many reasons why our resolutions rarely come to fruition: an inability to make changes in ourselves in order to effect change in our lives; a lack of motivation and difficulty in sustaining the effort required; a subconscious fear of deviating from the 'status quo' and entering uncharted waters; setting ourselves unrealistic goals; to name but a few.
Image credit: Monik Grabkow

There is, however, a quiet revolution happening! Whether consciously or subconsciously, most of us recycle, reuse, upcycle, adapt, or keep things that, a few years ago, we would have been more likely to discard. We remember to take our 'bags for life' to the supermarket. We turf out our wardrobes, rediscover old treasures, and avoid the throwaway fashion trap. We grow herbs in pots, tomatoes in buckets, and potatoes in trugs or, if we're really lucky we feed ourselves and our families from an allotment or corner of the garden. Instead of mindlessly buying more stuff, we mindfully consider if we actually need it! We fix things!! In so many ways, we're recognising more and more the quiet contribution we can make to the planet and to our own wellbeing: our emotional, physical, financial, and social wellbeing.

Image credit: Eduardo Casajus
In addition to a collective consciousness about being less wasteful, the spotlight has been shining on our collective immunity or lack of it. The Covid-19 pandemic demonstrated our potential frailty with a lottery-like reaction to the virus: one person suffering minimally while their neighbour is struck down for weeks. 

The upshot of this bombardment of bad news over the past few years means that we're more inclined to try and think of ways that we can inject a bit of positivity into our lives through protecting our environment, protecting our mental wellbeing, and protecting our physical health. There's never been a more important time to really take stock and look to a new way of living more naturally in the future. Let the revolution begin!
Image credit: Vedrana Filipovic
Spring may seem a long way off, after all we are only just over the hurdle of the shortest day, but it's not too early to begin to think of ways to quietly revolutionise our lives. Those long evenings tucked up inside (admittedly under an extra blanket or two while we avoid turning the heating up), are the ideal time to get your revolutionary tactics in place. But (and it's a big but) don't be tempted to go all out and risk falling at the first motivational hurdle.

Take things easy and think of one or two things that you can easily implement in your life in the coming year (you could jot your ideas down in a wellbeing journal). For instance, when spring kicks into gear, foraging (safely of course) offers many opportunities to boost your nutrition, get some fresh air and exercise, and also save some money (fun fact: nettles are a rich source of antioxidants and vitamin C and cost nothing). You might consider switching to some alternative, eco-friendly cleaning products that can easily be put together at home from every day basics. How about trying out some natural remedies or beauty products made with your own fair hands?
Image credit: Elena Leya
Let's all head into 2023 and start a New Year's Revolution! If you need a little inspiration from some amazing makers who can help you on your way, then look no further. Here are some wonderful ideas to help you get a bit more nature into your life.

An Introduction to Herbal Medicine with Rowan Mconegal in Herefordshire.

Image credit: Rowan Mconegal

This weekend course covers the basics of herbalism and using herbs to make your own top quality cosmetics and herbal preparations. Medical herbalist Rowan works with people who want to learn how to use herbs sustainably in their own lives to enhance health and wellbeing, teaching them how to identify, cultivate, harvest and make remedies, learning and respecting the power of herbs. Check out Rowan's maker's page for lots more inspiration.

Grow your own organic, climate change savvy produce with Green Rocket Courses in West Wales

Image credit: Kim Stoddart

Growing some of your own produce in line with the natural world has to be one of the most empowering experiences going for person, plate and planet. Kim will be running courses outside in her large, climate change savvy training gardens in beautiful West Wales in 2023. This course is ideal for those new to 'grow your own' as well as those with experience looking to learn how to nurture delicious home grown fruit and vegetables with a greater resilience around our changing climate. This is all about working closer with nature for the benefit of all. Check out Green Rocket's maker's page for this and for Kim's inspirational online, on-demand courses.

How to create herbal tea blends

Image credit: Niki at Living Naturally Loving Life
This workshop is equally suitable for those who are dipping their toes into creating herbal tea blends and for the more experienced herb users. It's an ideal workshop for those who wish to start blending enjoyable, quality, health giving brews, rather than relying on poor quality, shop bought herbal tea bags that barely taste of anything! By the end of the course you will be brewing multiple herbal tea blends with confidence. You can browse more courses from Living Naturally Loving Life on the maker's page.

Make a Simple Dress in a Day

Image credit: Dillington House

This course is aimed at students who enjoy sewing and would like to learn more about making their own paper patterns and creating their own designs to suit their figure. During the day the course will cover changing dart positions, incorporating seam lines, gathers and flared skirts. But don't stop there, have a browse of our range of dressmaking and tailoring courses. You're sure to find something to fire up your own sewing revolution!

Rag Rugging - the perfect way to use fabric scraps

Image credit: Lizzie at Ragged Life
Have fun turning old t-shirts and forgotten favourites into recycled works of art with the age-old skill of rag rugging. You will learn all the skills you will need to be able to make unique rag rugs, cushions and art to spice up your home with Lizzie at Ragged Life.

Upcycling with Pallets in Somerset

Image credit: Black Paw Upcycle Project

If you simply want to have a go at upcycling, then look no further. We have plenty of ideas to keep you busy in 2023! How about making an amazing piece of furniture from pallets. Scott at Black Paw Upcycle Project will show you the techniques used in taking apart a pallet and turning it into something new.

We hope you've found something to inspire the quiet revolutionary in you so that you can look forward to living more naturally in 2023 and beyond.
Image credit: Myriams-Fotos

A happy and successful year to all of you from all at CraftCourses. Vive la révolution!

Our website uses cookies to give you the best user experience. By using the site you are consenting to our use of cookies. You can find out more, or manage your cookie settings in our Privacy Policy