DIY (do-it-yourself) projects can become addictive. Many things you can DIY are really quite simple to make, and they can save you a lot of money. If you make your own laundry detergents or foods, you can be sure of the ingredients that go into the different products instead of wondering what sort of nasties are in there.
I am by no means the queen of DIY. I started doing DIY things when I lived with my roommate last year. She makes her own laundry detergent, soap, beer, clothing… She made a table out of a cypress stump. This woman has skills.
Are you a DIY-er? If yes, what products/recipes do you recommend? Any words of wisdom for newbies?
For me, it’s been baby steps. A recipe here, a project there.
In this post I want to share some of my DIY triumphs. I’ve given credit to the places where I found certain recipes or projects as appropriate. Google is a wonderful thing…
If you’re not a DIY-er, why not? Is there something that holds you back from DIY?
Some things that I’ve begun to make for myself:
Laundry detergent from Happy Money Saver – I’ve modified their recipe a bit: 1-3lb box washing soda, 1-4lb box of borax, 2 bars of Fels Naptha, and 2 bars of Ivory. I grate the soap in my food processor. It works great on my clothes, and it lasts a long time.
Dishwasher detergent from Happy Money Saver – This is a new one for me. After one load, it seems to do as well as store bought detergent, though it leaves a bit of a film. I’ll have to see if I can get rid of that. I chose to make the nuggets, and they are really easy. Getting them out of the ice cube tray was a bit tough.
Sugar scrub from DIY Natural – DIY can be about pampering too! This DIY-er was a great gift last Christmas. I continue to make it for myself, though without the tea. I found that the tea can stain your tub.
Three ingredient PB cookies from AllRecipes.com – I was hankering for a snack one night, but I didn’t really want to go to the store and I didn’t have many ingredients in the pantry. A little Googling led me to this delicious recipe. If you want to spice up these cookies, add some granola, raisins, or chocolate (or all three!).
Hummus! – I’m so glad I bought a food processor last Christmas (best $25 I ever spent). I love hummus, and it’s so easy to make: garbanzo beans (a.k.a. chickpeas), a couple of cloves of garlic, a little olive oil, and then any other ingredients you might like. I’ve made jalapeno cilantro, garlic, beet (I buy canned beets.). The options are pretty endless, and it takes minutes to make. Great to take to parties. Actually, great to just have around the house…
A skirt! – Having to take home economics in middle school and high school has paid off. I recently made a cute wrap skirt! I’ve completed other small sewing projects through the years, though I’ve mostly avoided clothing… I didn’t really use a pattern. Just make sure the waist is about 1.5x the size of your waist. Make 4 or 5 trapezoid fabric panels and sew them all together. (The top will be 1.5x the circumference of your waist, the bottom will be bigger, and it’s up to you how flow-y you want it.). Make a belt and sew it on the top (the hardest part for me). I love the polka dots with the floral pattern. I don’t always make clothes, and it’s a sporadic hobby, but I’m still pretty proud of this.
So there are a few products that I’ve integrated into my DIY life. All of these projects have helped me save money, based on what it would cost to buy similar products in a store. Saving money certainly contributes to a living daringly life style. Plus, I know people will want me with them if the zombie apocalypse ever occurs!
The other good side of these products is that they are easy to make. Once you have the ingredients, they literally take minutes to make. Well, the skirt was a challenge and took more time, but the others take almost no time at all.
Will you become a DIY-er?