My dad taught me many things when I was growing up. Here are five important standards I took from what he had to say about money, and a few I've learned on my own.
In a world full of exceptions, we still have some unifying traits. This is one thing I can say for certain, you handle money almost every day. It's a constant flow, either in or out like a steady tide. I have a small but powerful set of money books on my shelf, and you should too. This list is probably not new, but I know there's something on this list you need to grab today to up your money game in the very best way.
Five years ago I found a tiny grant through a journalism fellowship so that I could shoot a documentary short about sex-trafficking in South Africa during the 2010 Soccer World Cup. Four years ago I found some small financial aids to help me study the Lakota language, and three years ago my brother and I found a grant through his college that helped fund our dream of rafting the entire Mississippi River.
Have you every stopped and wondered how ATM's actually work? How they correctly distribute the right bills without mistakes? And how they do it all securely? Well check out this surprisingly enriching short video that unpacks how the guts of the beast actually come together to keep our money flowing...
If we were all millionaires, we'd all look stylish everyday. Not necessarily fancy, but we'd be able to afford whatever we needed to fit our particular body types and look our best, whatever that may be.
But, we're not. Well, I'm not. (If you are, feel free to email me at Chris @ manmadediy.com. I have lots of interesting ideas for you.) But in the days of the internet and online shopping, we've now access to all sorts of deals that we'd never be able to take advantage of years ago.
This time of year, footwear choices can be a gamble. Overthink it, and you're stuck in snow or hiking boots all day. Under-prepare, and your socks and feet stay wet, cold, and covered in road salt.
The answer, of course, is to opt for the middle, and choose a natural weather-resistant material that's stylish no matter what the season: leather.
Donald Glover has a great stand up bit about Home Depot being where your childhood goes to die, and while that may be true, there are few places that get me as amped up as a supply run to a hardware store. The more you go, the more you know, but I was surprised to find out that many of these tips were new to me. Who knew Lowe's could haggle?
Here at ManMade, "value" is all about getting a product which has a quality you're comfortable with at a price that you're comfortable paying. For us, that means we're rarely recommending
The Black Friday arms race isn't good for humanity, but it can help the price-conscious consumer. Amazon is gearing up for an 8 day Black Friday sale and here are all of the deals you may want to check out from electronics to home renovation equipment to outdoor gear.
With the weekend always right around the corner, it's time to think about plans. How about trying this - keep the wallet at home and figure out how to spend two whole days without spending a dime.
There are times to try new things. Times to taste different flavors, experiment with products, seek out something you've never encountered before...And sometimes, you just want to know what the best option is. The easy choice. The go-to. The everyday variety you know will work when you need it, and rely on every time.
Is it just me, or has the future turned out to be a bit of a disappointment? Hoverboards and jetpacks aside, I still can't beam anybody up, or down, or cook steak in my microwave, or have a sassy robot maid clean my house. But Square Cash is one area in which the future seems to have delivered, and I've been telling everyone about it for almost a year now. But, let me back up a bit and talk about the suckiness of non-future-money: paper currency.
Do you know what happens every third time I visit the drive-through ATM to get cash? I lose my card in the machine. Do you know how many armpits, waist bands, and god-knows-what-other sweaty places
I'm a big fan of takeout, just make a call and the food is ready to munch within a few minutes. Like most people, I have my favorite meals that define the restaurant for me. They are the go-to picks that I get and leave happy every time. But what about the joints too far away to make a call and grab what you want when the urge hits?
If you’re like me your DIY obsession can get so out of hand you have to start selling your stuff to fund more stuff! One of the ways my wife and I do it is setting up a booth at local festivals, barn sales and craft fairs. With a little bit of business savvy and DIY ingenuity, you too can start turning a profit on your passions.
There are times to try new things. Times to taste different flavors, experiment with products, seek out something you've never encountered before...
And sometimes, you just want to know what the best option is. The easy choice. The go-to. The everyday variety you know will work when you need it, and rely on every time.
Now that it's officially summer, let's apply that search to a great bottle of gin. Gin is a particularly diverse spirit. Besides Scotch whisky, I can't think of one that has a broader spectrum of flavors. And different bottles will showcase the distiller's creativity and play better with certain ingredients. But there is one bottle that I recommend for almost any cocktail that calls for London Dry Gin; the thing I would take to a party or use in a punch or batch drink for a big group.
A Modern Man's Guide to Bargaining: How to Haggle and Get the Best Price...without Acting Like A Jerk
Everyone loves to save their hard-earned cash. So spending as little as possible while getting the most value is always the best way to go. But how can you make that happen without acting like a jerk in the process? Here are a few tried-and-true tips.
The coin ring is an internet DIY classic. I remember seeing an old video (on Makezine, perhaps?) on creating a nickle ring way back in the early days of the DIY and craft blogosphere. Like, 2006.
But, most tutorials simply harvest the coin as raw material, banging it and beating it until it looks like any piece of cool-colored metal. These pieces by Nicholas Heckaman, however, fully embrace the ring's origin, showing off that recognizable texture and type, giving the ring plenty of personality.
Last night I was in a conversation with some friends about wallets because we all remembered being in junior high, and the duct tape wallet was a pretty big fad... for eighth graders. None of us had the time, cash, or skills (most likely) to create awesome leather wallets like we might have liked, but I always was a fan of the DIY ethos, especially when it comes to such a personal item I tend to use everyday.
If you've ever been mugged (or accidentally lost your wallet in a river like I've actually done, TWICE), you know the insane pain it can be to replace everything. While there's a good case to be made for why you should immediately photocopy the contents of your wallet, there are lots of other great ways to reduce the fat wad in your pocket and streamline your life with redundancies to spare.
While proper tipping is a sign of a good manners, knowing how much- and when to- is one of those life skills I think I was supposed to pick up by osmosis. Generally speaking I’ve done my best to lean on the generous side, but I’ve definitely guessed my way through a handful of social situations. Thankfully, this long-form article written by an academic - and former waiter - takes a look at some of the large-scale statistics on tipping in different situations across America.