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Making Stuff and Doing Things: A Collection of DIY Guides to Just About Everything
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Making Stuff and Doing Things: A Collection of DIY Guides to Just About Everything

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3.9  ·  Rating details ·  280 Ratings  ·  34 Reviews
Kyle Bravo has assembled a comprehensive book along with dozens of other instructional articles that tell you how to do just about everything. Topics include getting active, direct action, gardening, how to make wine, homeschooling, fixing a toilet, audio phone patch, how to make envelopes, shoe repair, making rubber stamps, how to juggle, composting, DIY toothpaste, getti ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published July 1st 2005 by Microcosm Publishing (first published January 1st 2005)
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Finooola
Apr 22, 2009 rated it did not like it
Shelves: instructional
The compiler of this book (which is a collection of zine articles) and most of the individual writers are well meaning. However as a book that tells you how to "make stuff and do things" it has failed for me. I don't think I will use a single thing that I read in the book. The authors would no doubt think that I am falling into the capitalist trap when I say this, but why would you ever need to make your own rope? Even if civilisation collapses, rope, string, yarn etc. would surely be easier to ...more
Spike Gomes
May 22, 2013 rated it liked it
A pretty decent compilation of DIY guides compiled from a multitude of zines. It's pretty hit and miss. Some of the things in there are so stripped down and basic, it's more of a jumping off point than an actual guide. Others are just bizarre. Why anyone would go through the process of making their own dildo and strap-on harness is something so far beyond my ken as to be mind-boggling. Others have flaws, errors or omissions in them that cause some major headaches or sickness, and yet others are ...more
Ryan Mishap
Dec 25, 2008 rated it it was ok
An underground DIY book and the title should tell you that. These are useful little tools if you are the type of person ready to throw yourself into something and figure it out on your own. These type of DIY resource intsrtuctions are often just good starting points for the introduction of an idea, the rudiments of making say, a bicycle powered washing machine, and inspiration. The instructions to build something or do a task in this book aren't enough if you are the type of person who needs to ...more
Ami
Feb 02, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I've read the whole book, but I'm currently revisiting Matte Resist's articles on gardening. The book is really inspiring, makes you feel like you can DIY too. Great cut & paste zine aesthetic (as most if not all the articles were culled from zines), and a wide variety of stuff. Make your own sex toys. Grow your own food. Ways to catch flies, bind books, play guitar chords, and lots, lots, LOTS more.
Huckleberry
Dec 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
I really liked how the book was compiled from various zines, and there is a lot of actionable stuff here. Microcosm publishes a lot of excellent writing that might not otherwise see the light of day.
Terri
Dec 16, 2011 rated it it was ok
While this book had a lot of good information in it, I wasn't impressed with the way it was presented. A majority of the content was previously published articles in magazines, newspapers, etc. and then COPIED and pasted into book layout. Which means many of the pages are in such tiny print I needed a magnifying glass to read them. Personally, nothing is worth reading through a magnifying glass for any length of time. I would have thought the content would have been retyped and presented in norm ...more
Morgan
Sep 09, 2008 marked it as partially-read
Recommended to Morgan by: the back of someone's toilet
Kyle Bravo didn't really write this book or even edit it—more like he compiled it. Masking Stuff and Doing Things looks like a scrapbook of pages torn out of various photocopied fanzines. It's a nice scrapbook that encourages and guides the reader through everything from "how to play the guitar" to "how to fix your bike" to "how to compost your own fecal matter." That the book is an unedited collection of how-to's is a strength in its collective voice, but also a weakness in who this information ...more
Liz
Jan 20, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: zine-ish
this book really annoyed me. some of the sections were good and useful which is why it gets two stars. but a lot of them exemplified the anarcho-DIY tendency to not even consider that non-punx might have useful skills to share. I don't think radical DIY politics should be about completely ignoring existing resources. the sewing/embroidery section in particular was really fucking half-arsed, which struck me as highly disrespectful to a skill set that's already devalued by mainstream culture. what ...more
Hannah
Jul 31, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: D.I.Y Enthusiasts
Shelves: how-to, art, nonfiction
This book brings together lots of Misc. information from word of mouth, friends, and even random articles on the internet. It's great for anyone into D.I.Y.

The book itself includes doodles and illustrations by the author and much of it is written by hand or in an old-fashioned typewriter font. It contains information on everything from mulching, creating your own soy milk, and growing sprouts to making your own butt plug. Seriously, the range of information in this book is vast and ecclectic.

Th
...more
Matt Algiers
Nov 18, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Awesome. A book with handy, excessive, necessary and foolish DIY tips and guides. It can be a little too punk rock for me at times, though. For example, I would never ever make a human waste compost toilet. But I would make a duct tape wallet, key chain super tool (knife, fork, spoon, swiss army thingy with screwdriver file scissors etc, led light, nail clippers, lockpick, and oh yeah, keys) and a dozen others. This is a great book, and anyone looking into DIY that isn't of the Bob Villa variety ...more
Ean
Dec 03, 2010 rated it really liked it
I thought this was a good introduction to DIY. Best article was on how to patch clothing. It is time consuming but VERY durable. I also really dug the bit on making a bathing suit out of bandannas but I mean it's probably easier to wear your undies. The bottom of the suit was ... I could not make it fit properly. The top was easy and really sturdy though I'm not sure how often I have three bandannas on me at any given moment.
Laurie
Feb 02, 2011 rated it liked it
This is worth a peek at the least. Pretty bizarre book for the Hipster/Grandoldperson in us all. Contents of this DIY guide include: how to set up your avg. sewing machine,fixing a broken toilet, how to make dandelion wine, make your own toothpaste, etc...lots of ideas on how to make life less dependent on others. :)
Inge
Nov 14, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: adult
A compilation of different How-To articles from a variety of zines. I almost want to keep this at the Reference Desk. It's like a reference material for the indie/zine/DIY/punk set. I want to try homemade rootbeer most of all.
Jenny
Aug 05, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: everyone i know, but especially people who think it's not gross to make your own soy juice
Shelves: how-to
this book is a scatterbrained compendium of zine articles, all DIY how-to awesome. i learned how to, yeah, make my own soy juice (matt d. actually liked it!) and engage in other horrifyingly hippie activities.
Mark
Nov 22, 2008 rated it liked it
It won't make you a master of self reliance, however it does offer some great suggestions. The fact that some of the articles seemed like they were written by 2nd graders didn't give credibility to some of the information, but it still makes for a quick, fun read.
Jenna
Nov 09, 2010 rated it it was amazing
awesome diy book. a good go-to for me.
S
Nov 17, 2008 rated it it was amazing
you have no reason to be bored for a while after you read this.
Brooks
Aug 12, 2014 rated it liked it
little crusty for me, although that herbal remedies bit was cool/helped
Marnanel
Jul 09, 2007 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: anyone
A collection of zines which tell you how to do pretty much anything from repairing a washing machine to recycling your own fecal matter. Not always the most legibly typeset book in the world.
Aleks
Apr 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
i love this book- every time i come back to it there is something new that i've (re)discovered that newly interests me.
J
Apr 28, 2009 rated it liked it
There's a ton of useful info in this book. In fact, it was my guide to building my own composter this weekend. Easy to read, decipher and apply. Good stuff!
Firinel
Jul 09, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: anyone, really
Though several of the zines republished in this book border on illegible, it's generally filled with a lot of really great to know, well described things.
cat
Jan 04, 2010 marked it as to-read
it's on it's way! yay!
Rebecca
Jan 30, 2008 rated it it was amazing
AWESOME DIY BOOK. Everything from making your own wine to gardening to building a cart-bike, (which I want to do as soon as I get my hands on a cart.) I love this book.
Emily
Nov 09, 2007 rated it it was amazing
excellent book if you need to do or make pretty much anything for a dirt cheap (if any) price
Coty
May 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: how-to-guides
This is one of the most wonderful how to books I've ever read.
Dave
Mar 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing
a great guide to actually doing something with your mind & your hands. try doing something for/by yourself for once. the world makes a lot more sense afterwards. trust me.
dana
May 16, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-the-past
Yay! This book is a lot of fun. I've read it in the past, but pick it up again and again for inspiration.
Shauna
Jan 23, 2010 rated it really liked it
More of a reference book for doing it yourself. Interesting to read.
Phineas
Feb 24, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: recommended
Always coming back to it. A collection of DIY guides that has too much to mention. Get it!
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Kyle Bravo is a zinester and musician from New Orleans, LA. With his wife, Jenny, Bravo runs Hot Iron Press - a letterpress and silkscreen printshop, distributor of artists books, zines, comics, etcetera, and organizer of various DIY projects. He also contributes to zines, including Zine World: A Reader's Guide to the Underground Press and Factory Direct.

Bravo edited a collection of DIY articles i
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