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The Big-Ass Book of Crafts

3.73 of 5 stars 3.73  ·  rating details  ·  1,132 ratings  ·  124 reviews
The Big-Ass Book of Crafts is packed with ideas for sprucing up your living space; concocting fabulous, all-natural body products; designing your own unique stationery; and creating countless other crafts that will convince your friends and loved ones that you're the secret love child of Martha Stewart (only much, much cooler).

Forget crocheted doilies and itchy knit sweate
Paperback, 384 pages
Published February 19th 2008 by Gallery Books
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Best Informative Non-fiction
3rd out of 36 books — 29 voters
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Best Crafty Books
1st out of 6 books — 3 voters

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Community Reviews

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I was excited to receive this book as I've seen so many wonderful reviews, but, just a few pages in, my excitement quickly soured. They may as well have called this the Big-Ass Book of Crap. Although there were a handful of projects I could conceivably see constructing and placing in my home (possibly warranting a 1.5 star rating), the vast majority of projects in this book are more suited to dorm-room living (and I'm not even 100% sure I'd use them there)! Admittedly, if you need ideas for fun ...more
Wow, I was quite shocked at how ugly & tacky the vast majority of these crafts were. Especially considering it was written in 2008 (and not 1985) and the Introduction said: "I hope that what you find in this book inspires you to make crafts that are beautiful, functional, fun, and - most important - home worthy."

I was tempted to give it two stars simply because there are a couple of techniques that I will probably try, and in that respect it was a little bit useful. But there is no way I wil
Basically, the author of this book has never heard the phrase "less is more." I found it ironic that he recounted a conversation with a friend who asserted that crafts should be "home-worthy," or that is, something you would actually put/keep in your house. Many, many, many of the crafts in this book were not only pointless, but also ugly. There's only so many things you can glue onto other things before it gets a little absurd. It was also clear that that Mark Montano had specific fetishes, as ...more
Leslie Dawn Homer
this is a fabulous book with great ideas and easy to follow instructions. Tons of pictures of the finished products too.

the stuff in here is mostly colorful, whimsical, and kinda out there but I love looking thru it and have done a few of the items and plan on doing more.

it's also very inspiring to just look thru and get ideas for other things you are working on.

Mark Montano (of TLC’s 10 Years Younger and While You Were Out) just came out with a new book - The Big Ass Book of Crafts and boy is the title fitting because it really is a BIG ass book of crafts! I should have know what to expect since Mark is also the author of another fun book in my library, Dollar Store Decor: 100 Projects for Lush Living That Won't Break the Bank. As far as home decor goes, both books are a little too funky for my personal tastes, but they are still a load of fun and ther ...more
Alissa Bach
Well...this book is exactly what the title says it is. I checked it out to find some cool project ideas I could use for the Teen Make & Take (DYI crafts) my library has every month.

Here's the verdict:
While this book is filled with some really cool and creative ideas, I'm not sure how many of them would be practical to do in a library (or school) setting. However, this is one of the coolest craft books I've encountered recently, and I'd still recommend it for the fan of Arts & Crafts pr
Juliet Heart
Feb 15, 2010 Juliet Heart rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: DIY Alternacrafters
The Big-Ass Book Of Crafts is a down-and-dirty, ultra-thrifty, practical book of craft projects that's rimming with enthusiasm. It is filled with great ideas you can alter to reflect your own personal style, affordable techniques that won't break the bank, and practical projects that make this book worth a look. This really is a BIG ASS book and has tons of hip and kitschy projects for the DIY alternacrafter.
I'm not sure what some of the reviewers here were expecting as the title and cover do a great job of telling you this isn't your average crafts book.

There is something here for every budget and skill level and most of the projects can be updated or personalised with alternative materials and themes. So what if you think you're above making things out of lolly sticks and straws? Just give those projects a miss or take inspiration from them to make something on a larger scale.

I found it refreshing
Some projects look pretty damn cool.
More like the Big Ass Book of Crap. There are better crafts with more useful instructions and illustrations on DIY craft websites like Instructables. I thought this was pretty unimpressive and would not recommend it even as a library check-out.
Not one project in here that I would think of making for myself or a gift.

Awesome premise, cheap looking products.
Blech. Life size paper mache Day of the Dead Devil. 'Nuf said.
Tons and tons of crafts I'd love to make in this book!
The Big-Ass Book of Crafts by Mark Montano is as awesome and edgy as it’s name! Full of fun, inexpensive, avant-garde arts and crafts, most are incredibly functional and easy-to-make.

My favorite projects are the ones that incorporate old, unusable books for repurposing, such as framed silhouettes (p 9), a laminated chandelier (p. 72), decoupage plates (p.134), placemats (p. 215) and stitched note cards and envelopes (p. 306).

Mr. Montano even shows, with step-by-step instructions, how to make you
If I wasn’t looking for a place already, I’d definitely have to since there are so many ideas in my head from this book.

Some of the projects were tacky (I won't be attempting the the crosses, domino or rope projects), but there were also definitely some gems (art cards, wall hangings...). Most of all think this book is good for introducing new techniques on how to create one's own unique items to one's taste (stamping, simple binding, spray painting to make things look bronzed...)

Mark Montano
Its big and its assy. xD
A book of crafts that is the size of a Las Vegas phone book.

Fun to read with some fun easy to do projects. It gets 5 stars for being fun, unique and being my only crafting book that freaked my mother out when she saw it in my bookshelf. xD
This book is full of some nifty ideas/crafts and inspiration! I definitely recommend going to yard sales, thrift stores, & scrap stores like the scrap exchange in Durham, NC! It's always fun to get creative and re-purpose & re-use! :)
I like the techniques more than the actual crafts, but worth buying for the techniques alone. I've made a few of the projects and they turned out as described.
I picked this one up after browsing around the craft section looking for re-usable crafting. Despite the fact that there are "more than 150 crafts to fill your home, give to friends, decorate the yard, or send to Mom," I found most of them to ugly and impractical. The author obviously doesn't have small children or pets, as most of his designs would be destroyed by one or both of these. I did find some good designs/products here, such as the Relaxing Bath Crystal Body Scrub, Foot Balm and homema ...more
Apr 05, 2012 Stacy rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: craft
Pros: Book has tons of ideas. Every project could be done in a different print, altered style or with a different form. Projects aren't handyman required and can be finished in an afternoon. Creativity is huge - lamps made out of sieves and straws, trees made out of books, frames made of a variety of items. Not all items are sitting around the house just begging to be used but most are easy to find.

Cons: The harlequin designs and use of cards aren't my style.

As you can see, the pros outnumber t

Meg Powers Meg Powers said: "okay...i really hated this guy's show..10 years younger...but! he has some pretty great, simple crafts and beauty product ideas presented in a fun and easy-to-read format. I can't fault him for capitalizing on potential fame, DIY media-style...i like...more okay...i really hated this guy's show..10 years younger...but! he has some pretty great, simple crafts and beauty product ideas presented in a fun and easy-to-read format. I can't fault him for capitalizing on pot
Mar 28, 2008 Amy rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: crafty people
Shelves: crafty, 2008
This book is awesome. The writer gives you simple instruction for creating some pretty cool thinks. I like that most things only have 1-2 pages of instructions and that most of the materials are fairly common and easy to find. He does not attempt to over-explain things but gives the reader just enough information. Even if you don't like his exact designs, most things would be easy to suite to your specific taste or style. There are a few cheesy things in there (like things made with Popsicle sti ...more
Julie Bramman
Need to make:
Stitched Cards and Envelopes
Living Doll
Mar 07, 2014 Ines added it
some projects are great, some are dated.
Very awesome craft book
Aug 26, 2008 jess rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2008, craft
This book takes a few simple projects, and offers several variations - 5 decorative lamps. 5 decorated plates. 6 kinds of window treatments. Some of the projects are a little different from the usual indie-craft book, but don't expect anything too ground-breaking. There's some innovation in material use, like the duct tape arm chair. Alternately, there's some mind-numbing material use, like the repeated references to Avery T-shirt Transfers. YMMV. The pictures are big and bright, generally, ther ...more
Lots and lots of things to do, from the very creative to the down right weird! I didn't care for his gold spray painted baby doll, but loved many other crafts. Kind of a recycle/reuse/repurpose theme, and I really like to recycle. Has several old school crafts (popsickle sticks? huh?) but some other really cool crafts. I really like the leaf curtain and some of the hanging things. One of those you have to keep the meat and throw away the bones types of books, but enjoyable to read and use overa ...more
Shayla Fish
I was seeking new ideas away from Pinterest and this book has always caught my eye, however I never bothered picking it up.

I rented it from our local library and felt I should really listen when they say to "not judge a book by its cover." Instead of picking up an interesting and quirky craft book I was met with mediocre and yawn inspiring crafts I would never dream of making.

Hideous and tacky in the highest form (and not the kitschy-cute kind either).
Oct 07, 2008 Tess rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: crafts
My sister gave me this book for my birthday, and it is fantastic. I looked through it last night and marked all the crafts I want to do. The style of the crafts generally matches my own, and the writer gets specific about materials, which is helpful. Perhaps there's a little too much tin stuff or day-of-the-dead-type stuff, but each craft has a main idea that is simple and useful, and you can create any number of your own riffs on these basic ideas.
This really is, in fact, a big-ass book of crafts. There is a lot in here I would never even consider making. Some because it just looks dumb, some because it's just not my taste, and some because I don't own power tools beyond a drill (not that many projects call for those, but there are a few). But there are a fair number I would consider, either making as shown in the book or adapting. If nothing else, it's a good book for inspiration.
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