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On The Table Read, “the best creativity magazine in the UK“, experts at Readly have found a rise in searches for cross stich, crotchet and embroidery as Brits learn to make do and mend.

Cost Of Living Crisis

smiling asian woman sewing fabric in workshop
Photo by Teona Swift on

Once seen as an essential skill, the prices of clothes falling dramatically meant that sewing clothes has fallen out of fashion. However needlework is experiencing a rise in popularity

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Driven by economic pressures, as well as the widespread criticism of throwaway fashion, thrifty Brits are tackling the cost of living crisis by reviving the art of needlework, with almost a ten percent increase over the last year in the readership of ‘hobbies’, according to digital magazine and newspaper subscription app Readly. Terms such as ‘cross stitch’, ‘crochet’, ‘weaving’ and ‘embroidery’ appeared in the app’s top hobbies searches.

The drastic change in the economic climate as seen price soar over the last 12 month, with almost two in five of adults in the UK forced to reduce or stop spending money on clothes[1]. In a bid to be more eco-conscious, many have been upcycling and repairing their existing clothes, with the terms ‘reclaimed’, ‘zero waste’, ‘patchwork’, ‘retro’ and ‘handmade’ also appearing in the top searches on the Readly app.

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“With the cost of living crisis taking hold of the nation, we are seeing an increased appetite for our hobbies to work harder for us and needlework is one of the most searched and read hobbies on our app. From creating a new outfit, to upcycling an existing one or performing a quick repair, it appears that Brits are experiencing a revival of needlework and reading more as they look to be thrifty and sustainable with their fashion choices.

The types of topics we read about in magazines reveal what is on the mind of the nation and Readly data shows clear trends associated with external factors; during the pandemic we saw cooking and interior design categories rise and now we are seeing news and politics and needlework trending.”

Chris Couchman, Head of Content at Readly
Readly on The Table Read


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Readly’s portfolio includes 6,300 digital magazines and newspapers and podcasts, including a hobby & collecting category featuring many needlework magazines, as well as other hobbies and interest areas from gaming to astrology to coding. From news to fitness, food, music, business, arts and culture and kids titles too, there’s something for everyone.

Readly is the European category leader for digital magazines. The company offers a digital subscription service that lets customers have unlimited access to 7,500 magazines and newspapers including the catalogue of ePresse.

Readly has subscribers in more than 50 countries and content available in 17 different languages. In collaboration with 1200 publishers worldwide, Readly is digitising the magazine and newspaper industry. In 2021, revenues amounted to SEK 466 million. Since September 2020, the Readly share is listed on Nasdaq Stockholm Midcap.

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