Better Homes & Gardens - - News -

We’re no Nick Of­fer­man-level wood­work­ers, but if his NBC show Mak­ing It

has taught us any­thing, it’s that there’s no need to take our­selves too se­ri­ously, es­pe­cially when it comes to craft­ing. So we were game to try a few of the projects in the show’s new book,

The Mak­ing It Guide to Craft­ing ($25;

abrams­books.com).

Writ­ten in a cheeky voice that sounds a lot like the show’s hosts, co­me­di­ans Amy Poehler and Of­fer­man, the book was as much fun to read as it was to work from.

“In gen­eral, I’m kind of a ner­vous crafter, and my hus­band usu­ally has to fin­ish projects for me. But I felt like this ta­ble run­ner was sim­ple enough for me to man­age. At first I wanted to use a ruler and for it to be per­fect, but I had to re­mind my­self that the pain­terly qual­ity gives it charm. Us­ing forks as a pat­tern-stamp­ing tool was a cool idea be­cause ev­ery­one has ac­cess to them. I re­ally liked mak­ing the tas­sels too: String work may be more my craft­ing level.”

“I’ve never dyed fab­ric be­fore (only my hair), and I was sur­prised at how trou­ble-free it was. This shi­bori tech­nique—I’ve seen other ap­proaches— in­volves fold­ing and bind­ing fab­ric to cre­ate geo­met­ric shapes. Like the TV show, the book is di­vided into ‘Faster Crafts’ and ‘Master

Crafts.’ It also in­cludes help­ful primers on work­ing with tex­tiles, pa­per, wood, paint, and dyes, which I browsed be­fore start­ing this project. I was go­ing to skip the yarn tas­sels, but they give the pil­low a more fin­ished look. Plus, my cat loves them.”

“I’ve wanted to chal­lenge my­self to do a macramé project for a while now, so this was a great ex­cuse to try it. The hard­est part was teach­ing my­self how to make the dou­ble half hitch knot used in macramé. I’m a vis­ual learner, but the book doesn’t have step-by-step im­ages, so I watched videos. Once I mas­tered that, the mak­ing was al­most mind­less. The project turned out big­ger than I ex­pected and took about 15 hours over a few days. I hung the dowel on a wall so I could sit com­fort­ably while I worked on what will be my new head­board. I’m so happy with how

it looks.”

Q

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