DIY (Do It Yourself)

August 8, 2012

25 DIY Toys and Games Projects: Make: technology on your time

One way of living a greener life is to make things rather than rely on Chinese factories. Making toys and games with your family not only allows you to upcycle materials, it also teaches important science lessons.

Make: Technology on Your Time Volume 28 has over 25 projects. I especially like the section on "Toys From Trash".

MAKE Volume 28 hits makers' passion for play head-on with a 28-page special section devoted to Toys and Games, including a toy "pop-pop" steamboat made from a mint tin, an R/C helicopter eye-in-the-sky, and a classic video game console. You'll also build a gravity-powered catapult, a plush toy that interacts with objects around it, and a machine that blows giant soap bubbles. Play time is a hallmark of more intelligent species -- so go have some fun!

disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

November 20, 2008

Save Water with Niagara Conservation Home Eco Kit

niagara conservation home kit.jpg
Unless you live in an area experiencing drought, you may not think about water conservation much, as traditionally water bills are not high. No matter where you live, we should all be conserving water. Niagara Conservation's Water EcoKit is full of high-efficiency products to help you reduce your water consumption. This kit includes:

(1.5 GPM) Powerful two-setting massage spray showerhead that does not sacrifice performance for efficiency

Flow control technology: greater force at low pressure!
Rated #1 showerhead by leading industry organization
Conserves water and saves money while enhancing pressure, performance and appearance!
9-jet turbo massage is adjustable: gentle needle spray to forceful jet
Saves 40% more energy & water
Non-removable flow compensator
Non-aerating spray means less temperature loss with maximum energy savings
Pressure-enhancing Niagara Power
Consistent flow rate regardless of water pressure
Self-cleaning and maintenance-free
Installs easily by hand and without tools
Corrosion-resistant, high-impact ABS thermoplastic body
Meets or exceeds ANSI specifications
California Energy Commission-certified
10-year guarantee
ArrowContinue reading: "Save Water with Niagara Conservation Home Eco Kit"

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

April 15, 2008

Literally Make Your Apartment Green

wall-plant-holder.png Ever wanted to have plants growing on your walls? Lifehacker suggests DIYers can create a plant wall from the above diagram, as the retail indoor wall plant hanger sells for $250. House plants are known for improving indoor air quality. I'd much rather grow plants to clean air than rely on an energy using air purifier.  Besides, the plant wall is very cool for your green home decor.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

October 29, 2007

Sheryl Crow's Eco-Friendly Baby Shower

eco-baby shower.jpegThinking about throwing an eco-friendly baby shower? Get tips from Wee Generation, a collaboration between Seventh Generation, Baby Style and Healthy World Healthy Child.

The site features a video of party planner Traci Phillips talking about how she planned a green baby shower for Sheryl Crow's son Wyatt. Among the tips:

- Use local foods
- Avoid paper products or use recycled, recyclable tableware
- Wrap presents in reusable grocery bags or cloth diapers tied with a bow
- Have guests sign an organic baby t-shirt instead of a guestbook

Get more tips and check out the video at Wee Generation.

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

May 11, 2007

Weekend Reading: Itty Bitty Hats: Knitting Patterns for Baby Hats

51JVQ6ET3ML._AA240_.jpgHas the baby bootie knitting bug bitten any other pregnant women out there? I've been itching to start knitting something adorable for my baby-to-be.

Luckily, I've got a co-worker who works at a Yarn Store, and she just brought me Itty Bitty Hats by Susan B. Anderson. It's full of easy-to-knit patterns for all kinds of cute-abulous baby hats. The photos are terrific and the instructions are easy to follow.

I picked up some Manos Del Uruguay cotton Stria yarn and am on my way to a striped stocking cap in itsy-bitsy size. Can't wait to meet the little person whose head it's going to fit on.

Buy Itty Bitty Hats.

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

January 19, 2007

Make Magazine

Make-magazine.jpgLike Ready Made? Are you less artsy, more crafty? Got a serious Skunkworks operation in your basement? Is your role model more MacGyver than Martha Stewart? Then you may want to check out Make.

Here's what Amazon reviewer wiredweird had to say about it:

This quarterly magazine really hits the spot, if you're in its crosshairs. It's a clean miss for others.

It's pretty easy to tell whether you're in the target audience. Do you have a closet full of decommisioned PCs, cell phones, and other 21st-century rubble that you just know you could do "something" with? Do you have a Dremel tool, fine-tipped soldering iron, and more than one kind of epoxy in the house? Do the phrases "It works" and "It's beautiful" mean roughly the same thing to you? Does the idea of a home CNC milling machine stir you to jealousy or a quick look at your checkbook? Two or more yes answers probably qualify you as the intended reader.

This is about hacking your PC mouse or the cage for your pet mouse, about resurrecting last year's laptop as an electronic photo frame, and about how simple a robot control can be (you'd be surprised). It's like Popular Mechanics, but for the people who consider software, resistors, and pieces from antique clocks to be interchangeable. Although a few of the ideas in each issue have low-tech appeal, most are aimed at skill sets from "geeky highschooler" to "electronics professional".

Make is published by O'Reilly, famous for its nerd-worthy "animal books" for software developers. If you don't know what I'm talking about, well, you're probably not a software developer.

Subscribe at Make.

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

January 4, 2007

Do It Yourself: 108 Ways to Transform a T-shirt

generationt.jpg We spent the weekend between Christmas and New Year's doing the winter version of spring cleaning -- out with the old, in with the new. Well, actually, it was more "out with the old (to Goodwill, of course), and in with a little extra space in the house."

One of the challenges I always face when I hit my closet is what to do with all the t-shirts I manage to accumulate. I've got several old favorites which for whatever reason -- too baggy, wrong neckline, no-longer-fashionable sleeves -- end up sitting on the shelf instead of getting worn. I haven't worn them all year, but I can't bring myself to get rid of them.

Which is why I was delighted to come across a copy of Megan Nicolay's Generation T: 108 Ways to Transform a T-Shirt. Nicolay is a crafty do-it-yourselfer who offers, yep, 108 different things you can do with your old t-shirts -- from basic no-sewing-required ideas to crazy high-degree-of-difficulty projects like the "teeny bikini." Patchwork blankets, iPod cozies, handbags -- the sky's the limit as long as you've got scissors, a needle and thread, and the gumption to put yourself in Nicolay's crafty little hands and give it a go.

Available at Amazon.

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

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