Scrapbooking, knitting or dabbing a paintbrush in some watercolor paints to recreate the view from your kitchen window can be a restful and creative pastime. That quilted baby blanket you made for your new grandbaby, or the cozy afghan you knitted for your cousin in Minnesota helped to lower your blood pressure and gave your hand-eye coordination a workout, too. They also made thoughtful, creative gifts that might survive to the next millennium celebration and beyond. That's not a bad return for a few hours spent doing something you enjoy.
Is it any wonder that the rich and famous pursue creative outlets, too? We're not talking about the superstar ball player who collects classic cars and stores them in his stadium-sized garage. Plenty of celebrities like to craft homemade gifts for friends and family. Sure, they're in a creative industry, but that doesn't mean they don't have the time and passion to explore other creative outlets, too.
We've got the scoop on who likes to knit-one, purl-two and who prefers a paint brush to a glue gun. On the next pages, let's look at the crafty side of some of your favorite celebrities. You'll be surprised at who doesn't mind getting his(or her) hands dirty for the sake of art.
10: Taylor Swift
She sings; she writes music; she dances and she makes -- snow globes. Yes, Taylor Swift is a crafty miss who makes snow globes out of glass jars. Or at least she does at Christmas time. She fills them with festive little figures, water and glitter -- lots of glitter. There was even a write-up about her snow globe-making skills in People Magazine. There's something touching about a 20-something superstar who can trade in her designer gowns for a pair of utility jeans and the simple pleasure of making something homespun and surprisingly cute for the holiday. We hope she makes many more Taylor-ific snow globes and starts a craze that has us all buying distilled water by the gallon.
9: Rosie O'Donnell
We know Rosie loves kids -- and is kind of a big kid herself. She also loves crafts, especially those that involve children. She has a shop on the Etsy crafting Web site where she sells her unique and individual creations, including decorative boxes and little dolls she embellishes with Sharpie markers. She's also written a book of family craft projects called: "Rosie O'Donnell's Crafty U: 100 Easy Projects the Whole Family Can Enjoy All Year Long."
8: Julia Roberts
The pretty woman herself likes to spend the long hours between acting scenes involved in her favorite pursuit, knitting. Julia tells MyLifetime.com: "It's just great to make things...to have a pile of yarn and make it into something." Julia is widely credited with starting a Hollywood knitting frenzy that's grown to include such notables as David Arquette, Hilary Swank, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Cameron Diaz, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kristin Davis. She loves knitting so much that she'll be starring in the upcoming film "The Friday Night Knitting Club" based on the Kate Jacobs novel series. See, art does imitate life.
7: Tom Selleck
We had to dig a little for this one, but in an interview with Jon Stewart, Tom Selleck admitted that he enjoys woodworking and thinks it's a great stress reducer. Tom isn't alone in his passion for the silky sheen of a well-sanded hardwood. George Clooney is also into woodworking, and before being discovered, Harrison Ford earned his living as a cabinet maker. Ah, there's just something about the smell of oak shavings in the morning!
6: Paris Hilton
Yes, quintessential party girl, fashion icon and millionairess Paris Hilton makes scrapbooks, jewelry and other craft projects. Well, let's throw in a few clarifications: In 2009, Paris Hilton introduced her own line of scrapbooking-, art- and fashion-related craft products. You may believe she spends her time between red carpet appearances creating her own artistic greeting cards and compiling scrapbooks about her fascinating personal appearances and all her infamous friends -- or you could go the ungenerous route and conclude that she's never seen a stamp pad in her life. Earnest crafter looking to share her expertise or aging ingénue cashing in on a little easy money? You decide.
Even if you have doubts about a Hilton embracing scrapbooking, there's no doubt that Leeza Gibbons of "Entertainment Tonight" and "Extra" fame is a dedicated scrapbooker. She got into the hobby as a way to preserve shared memories after her mother contracted Alzheimer's disease. Leeza has a book out on the subject titled "Scrapbooking Traditions."
5: Marie Osmond
In addition to being a working single mother of eight children (and aunt to 80), Marie Osmond loves to sew and quilt. She's written a book about sewing: "Marie Osmond's Heartfelt Giving: Sew and Quilt for Family and Friends." She's also endorsed a signature line of sewing machines, the Janome Marie Osmond MO200 Quilter's Companion. When asked, Marie credits her mother and grandmother with giving her the itch to stitch. You can tell Marie likes homey stuff. Her craft interests are so numerous they're a cottage industry. Among other things, she endorses lines of collectable dolls, quilting fabrics and quilted bags.
4: Katie Holmes
Katie has a secret recipe for keeping daughter Suri happy and occupied on the road: Give her some craft tools like crayons and paper, and let her get creative. Katie takes the advice to heart, too. She believes that homemade accessories help make a house cozy, and a few personal touches can also work wonders with an impersonal hotel room. Husband Tom Cruise gave Katie a sewing machine for her birthday, and she plans on getting Suri involved, too. Even if they never finish a project, they'll look adorable trying.
3: Vanna White
Vanna White, the letter perfect hostess of "Wheel of Fortune," started knitting long before it became trendy. Even in prehistory when yarn crafts were still considered an homage to granny, she managed to make the hobby her own. She's the official spokesperson for Lion Brand Yarns, and she has her own lines within Lion Brand: Vanna's Glamour, Vanna's Choice and Vanna's Choice Baby. She's even gotten her daughter Giovanna involved with knitting. Take this to heart crafty moms everywhere: If you let your passion for a craft show, your kids may grow to like it, too.
2: Nicole Kidman
Actress Nicole Kidman can do it all. She acts, dances, sings, produces -- and sews. She's an accomplished needlewoman who first got into sewing because she was disappointed with the children's clothes styles she found on the market. She wanted her daughter's clothes to look special, so she took matters into her own hands.
The idea that a woman who knows clothes should decide to design and make her own isn't much of a stretch. Academy-award-winning actress Tilda Swinton ("Michael Clayton") has taken a turn at making her own clothes, too. She actually still wears clothes she made for herself back when she was 15 or 16. Now, that's an accomplishment.
1: Johnny Depp
Johnny Depp is an accomplished portrait painter. He says that he's drawn to the emotion in the eyes of his subjects. He's painted the likes of Marlon Brando, Tim Burton and Keith Richards. Depp isn't the first celebrity to pick up the big brush and do something remarkable with it. It seems that painting (and not the house kind), appeals to celebrities in a special way. Here's a brief list of celebs that are known for their painting prowess:
- Muhammad Ali
- Tony Bennett
- Pierce Brosnan
- Jim Carrey
- James Franco
- Anthony Hopkins
- Michael Jackson
- Lucy Liu
- Viggo Mortensen
- Ringo Starr
- Jane Seymour
- Mike Shinoda
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