The pandemic has changed a lot of things – how we interact with each other, how we work, how we use technology. It’s even changed how we play and spend our free time. Before COVID-19, it was not uncommon for people to ‘go out’ for entertainment, and we spent copious amounts of money on houses we barely frequented.

This all changed when the world was placed under lockdown. Suddenly, everyone not in essential services had to spend time at home. We had to trade in our nights out on the town for stay-at-home Zoom parties. We traded in going to the movies for binging entire series while never getting out of our PJs. And while all-in-all this forced seclusion has not been great, it has given us the opportunity to spend time on things we love, or to learn something new.

That’s why it’s no surprise that there has been an upsurge in people finding new, or rediscovering old, hobbies – there’s only so much ‘nothing’ you can do at home before you begin feeling like you’ll go insane. From birdwatching and drawing to learning a new language or crocheting a blanket, the hobbies that have been picked up in this time are as diverse as all of us sequestered in our houses.

One trend in particular that has gained traction in this time is 3D printing. Not only are 3D printers comparatively cheap to purchase and run, but they also enable users to create useful things – that might even be useful for other hobbies! With 3D printing, the sky’s the limit in terms of what can be designed and made. It’s also a really rewarding process seeing a 2D concept turn into an actualised 3D object that can be used or given as a gift.

In a time when everyone needs a win, hobbies like 3D printing are a great way to expend our energy and keep our minds engaged. And they really help us look forward to what we might accomplish in the future.