Name: Jessica (Tsai-Jung) Tsung
Age: 31 years old
Country: Italy (born in Taiwan)
About the series
The Healing Craft Series features creators sharing their thoughts and feelings on crafting and healing through crafting.
“I found myself live so much more in the moment, focusing on nothing but this one stitch, and the next one, and the next one. And when I’m ready to reconnect with the world, I’ll be holding a new garment. It’s like an exercise, to pay attention to one thing in this one second, and just take the best care of it.”
Jessica (Tsai-Jung) Tsung, @jess_rootknots
What kind of craft do you do and how long have you been doing it for?
I’m now super addicted to crochet, just started this year during the lockdown. Before this, I’ve painted on and off since I was a teenager.
What is your favourite place/time of day to craft and why?
I have a corner in the living room full of greenery, that’s my favorite place to crochet at home. In summer, I like to clear out the furniture and just sit on the floor to work , so I can have my stuff all over the place.
What inspires you (in life & in crafting)?
Before my crochet journey, I studied and worked in the field of architectural design, so I guess architecture is one of my souces of inspiration. Also I’m from a small-island country which has the mountains right next to the ocean, so I think natural elements inspire me a lot too…. but maybe more the ocean than the mountains.
How has/is crafting helping you and your mental health?
I had my period of time where I couldn’t find motivation for life whatsoever. It was like being under giant boredom and pressure at the same time. I didn’t want to get up from the bed in the morning and didn’t care to just let the days go by without doing anything serious. I remember myself being very fragile and defensive at that time, every conversation triggered me. I sabotaged myself to fail on things I should do and I realize now it’s because deep down I know that’s not the path I’d like for myself.
It wasn’t until I found my crochet hook that I pulled myself out of that crappy life style. And the more serious I treat my crochet work, the more passion I have for it. In this moment that I’m writing it down, I realize I’ve turned this hobby into a small business so it would have a bigger purpose, not just for the money but also for my passion to go on!
I start to get up early, have a proper meal so I can have a longer day working with my yarn and not worrying about being hungry or something else. I organize my home, my workout and the places to go for trips so I can get better pictures of my work….
For my mental health specifically, crocheting stitch by stitch is like meditation for me. I found myself live so much more in the moment, focusing on nothing but this one stitch, and the next one, and the next one. And when I’m ready to reconnect with the world, I’ll be holding a new garment. It’s like an exercise, to pay attention to one thing in this one second, and just take the best care of it.
What is your advice to other creators (or newly started creators)?
I’m quite a newbie myself so I don’t know if it’s my place to give any advice. But I’m always a person full of hobbies, and my biggest problem was I drop them often as well. Most of the time it wasn’t because of any major frustration but the fading of the passion. However, this time with the crochet journey, things really feel different. I’ve been taking care of my passion consciously like taking care of a plant.
Anyway I think my tips would be to not get ahead of yourself too much, focus on and enjoy each stitch (or whatever you’re doing) that’s within your fingers right now. Keep in mind that once it’s done, it doesn’t belongs to you anymore but belongs to the world.
Anything else you’d like to share?
Not really, but I appreciate this chance to write things down. It helped me clear up my mind a lot as well!