BookBingoNW2019: DIY (Do-It-Yourself)

You may not have heard the term DIY before but you’re likely familiar with the concept. Do you grow your own herbs? Cook? Make small home repairs? Knit? Sew? Change a flat tire on your bicycle? Well that means that you do it yourself (DIY). And any book that teaches you how to make something that you’d normally buy, or do something that you’d usually pay a professional to do instead can count towards your DIY bingo square.

If you don’t already DIY, this square may seem daunting. Here are a few titles that are entertaining and informative reads in their own right, regardless of whether or not you plan to make any of the projects.


Sewing Happiness by Sanae Ishida. In this heartfelt hybrid memoir/sewing instruction guide, local author Ishida recounts how learning to sew changed her life and shares a number of stress-free sewing projects, from book covers to bags to dresses and pants, arranged by season. She also includes an excellent, easy-to-follow primer on sashiko stitching, a traditional Japanese embroidery technique.

Norwegian Wood: Chopping, Stacking and Drying Wood the Scandinavian Way by Lars Mytting. Building your own fire is one of life’s most primal and satisfying tasks. A runaway bestseller in Europe, Norwegian Wood will teach you everything you need to know about selecting, chopping, storing and drying wood to heat your home while introducing you to a number of utterly charming Norwegians and their artfully arranged woodpiles. A must-read for anyone who loves Scandinavian culture.

A Year Between Friends by Maria Alexandra Vettes and Stephanie Congdon Barnes. This beautifully designed book chronicles a year of correspondence, recipes and handmade projects shared between two artist friends who live in Portland on both sides of the country (Vettes in Maine, Barnes in Oregon) and met online in the mid-2000s. From January through December, Vettes and Barnes document their joys and heartbreaks with intimate letters and photographs, and share mouth-watering recipes and simple but sophisticated crafts and household projects.

How to Make It: 25 Makers Share the Secrets to Building a Creative Business by Erin Austen Abbott. If you’re curious about what it takes to make a living from DIY art and craft, check out this collection of interviews with 25 creatives around the country who run their own artisan business. Each profile includes instructions for a simple project, such as a hand-printed scarf, essential bath salt soak or macramé plant hanger, that you can make yourself.

Fermentation on Wheels by Tara Whitsitt. In 2013, food activist Tara Whitsitt traveled across the United States in her mobile fermentation lab, spreading the gospel of fermented food. This breezy, freewheeling memoir is the result — combining travel narrative with mouthwatering recipes and tips for making your own pickles, sauerkraut, kombucha, sourdough, kefir, kimchi and many more tasty foods.

None of these titles pique your interest? Check out this list of DIY books for more ideas, or use our Your Next 5 Books service to get a personal list of DIY reads hand-crafted by your local librarians!

~posted by Abby

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