It's always very obvious when it's December in my house. I simply can't help but add a little bit of holiday cheer to each room.
But, there's not an inch of greenery, nor Santa Clauses, reindeer, or snowman. My home is really pretty modern, and the traditional Christmas vibe just doesn't match my stuff. So, I have an aluminum Christmas tree and metallic stockings, and to balance all that synthetic industrial-ness, I like to add plenty of handmade elements.
This year, in additional to my infamous paper snowflakes, I wanted more paper decorations that brought in a bit of color. So, I came with two easy how-tos: some mid-century inspiration paper ornaments, and a mod paper garland.
This year, Chanukah starts on December 1st, this Wednesday night. As for most holidays, we wanted to find appropriate decor to match the ManMade goals - guy-friendly, contemporary, and handmade.
We found it in this industrial menorah, or chanukkiah, which was assembled entirely from pipe fittings easily found at the hardware store.
Here's how its done:
Quick! Your co-workers are approaching with hand constructed miniature bamboo firing crossbows that shoot bamboo skewers. What do you do?
Why, duck behind your desk and quickly assemble this catapult, of course.
At ManMade, we often get emails from guys and ladies asking for help breaking into in the wonderful world of sewing your old stuff. While we're happy to help anyone get started, there are those tips and tricks that can only come with a bit of experimenting and practice.
So, we thought we'd share a collection of these tips, gathered by pros and those-just-getting-started alike.
Since their debut in 1979, the Wall Street Journal has featured more than 11,000 of their half-column Stipple headcuts. The signature portraits are created today by eight artists, and feature everyone from Hollywood celebrities to world government officials to Santa Claus.
To learn how to create the iconic style,
Everyone should learn how to make pizza at home. It's versatile, healthy, delicious, and relatively easy. You may never turn out anything as good as the pizzaiolos in Naples or New York, but making pizza that will delight your family and friends is within the reach of anyone with a few basic ingredients and a cooking scale.
I've been experimenting with different dough recipes and cooking techniques for about nine months now, and while I don't consider myself an expert, I've learned a few tricks and can now produce thin-crust, spongy-cornicione, nicely-charred pizzas.
What follows is my typical pizza process (I make this about once a
Guess what! You can make a super efficient Stirling engine from two soda cans!
"Awesome," you'll no doubt say. And then...
"What's a Stirling engine?"
Turns out, it's a super-efficient type of engine that converts heat into energy using cyclic compression, meaning it continually feeds itself energy by "compressing cool gas, heating the gas, expanding the hot gas, and finally cooling the gas before repeating the cycle."
We've said it before, and are proud to say it again: we love mini things, and we want them on sticks!
Add pizza to the equation, and we're completely done-for.
Super food crafter Meaghan Mountford shows you how to create tiny pizza pops, mounted on sticks and ready to go for a party, a trip, or just a very fun-filled Dexter marathon. Heck, if those creepy people hadn't freaked everyone out and it were legit to give away homemade food for Trick-or-Treat, we'd be whipping these up by the dozens for this weekend.
Some bloggers and stylists have called out chalkboard paint as being a fad that's overdone and now out-of-date. But we think the objection here isn't a re-writable surface, but big gray walls in interiors where they don't really work.
So, it's totally awesome to find this tutorial, which allows you to make DIY chalkboard paint in any color you wish.
We love the idea of putting something cool and digital, like a CD, inside a rustic, hand-hewn leather home. As the designer and author Elizabeth says, " This is an instance when my excessive love for prettiness wins out over practicality, utility, and common sense. I already had a CD case - a perfectly good one I'd had since high school. But its cover was nylon and plastic and - well, not hand-tooled leather. This is a makeover, and an impractical one at that - not a made-from-scratch project - but it sure is nicer to reach for a 'How to speak Italian' CD in the car now."
You know that spindle-y, cotton-y, faux spider web material they sell in the plastic bags?
I hate that stuff. First, it's gross and creepy; as in, not a cool, eerie Halloween way, but in a octogenarian's chin hair kinda way. And, it's nearly always misused to create a melty cotton ball look that looks nothing like an actual spider web.
But, this process it pretty intriguing. A special balloon-strengthening product called HI-FLOAT is allowed to dry inside an inflated then deflated ballon, and upon re-inflation, produces a string-y, bizarre, somewhat similar to an spider web looking thing, which, when combined with a few plastic creepy crawlers, looks pretty awesome.
When I was a kid, we made secret book hiding spots all the time: glue up the edges, grab the utility knife, and spend hours cutting. Of course, we didn't have any stuff worth hiding, but we were boys, and that's what boys did.
I love the idea of using secondhand books as a gift box, but my memories of the tried-and-true handcutting method, which would take more than an hour for a book big enough to put much in, make me think otherwise. But, this new method from John Park makes me think I might be able to pull it off this holiday season.
Isamu Noguchi's Akari lamps are among the classic, iconic pieces of mid-century design. These practical light sculptures are a playful take on the traditional Japanese paper lantern; updated with legs that echo the emerging atomic culture of the early 1950s, yet still maintaining the biomorphic shape found in Noguchi's other works. The Akari lamp series has been a part of the MoMA's permanent collection almost as long as it's been around.
IKEA has featured their share of paper lantern-inspired lamps over the years. The most recent rendition is the VÄTE series, a collection of rice paper shades on steel frames that give an obvious nod to
Shawnee of Life with Monkey whipped up this super quick pattern and technique for making fabric skulls. They're so easy to make that we can imagine these in bulk hanging from fishing line, or mixed in a candy bowl. We also think the shape would lend itself well to more anatomical skulls, or even Luchalibre masks.
Easy. Peasy. Halloweesy?