For those of us new to the arts and crafts scene, finding a project to do yourself can be intimidating. You start to wonder why you don’t just go out and buy something premade. It might be more expensive, but at least it’ll be right, right?
Wrong. It won’t be right because it will have meant that you gave up. You’ll know that you didn’t try and you’ll just feel like a failure. You’ll forever look at DIY sites and think, I could have been a DIYer, I could have been a good one. Yes, you can be a good one, all it takes is a little practice. Do you think Martha Stewart’s first floral arrangement was a success? It probably wasn’t. Maybe you think Rachel Ray’s first prepared dinner tasted delicious, probably not.
It’s only through trial and error that we learn anything. So if we’re going to fail anyway, we should fail at doing something, not by quitting.
Creativity & Patience
Let’s start with a basic material everyone has sitting in their junk drawer in the kitchen, you know the one. Pull out that roll of duct tape, pop in a Disney movie and let’s get down to business.
The Duct Tape Bookmark
In elementary school, at one time or another we all had to make a bookmark. I remember making several in grade school as a Mother’s Day present. If I remember rightly (and you do, too) bookmarks weren’t that hard to make.
As a novice DIYer, start with a simple project. In starting simply, you are teaching yourself the basics of a project. You do this by getting to know the materials and how they work together and learning by learning how to follow (and modify) directions. Now, let’s get to the good stuff—the bookmark!
- Roll of duct tape (style of your choice)
- Pair of scissors
- Page of card stock paper
- Hole puncher
- Premade tassel
- Cut the card stock lengthwise, totaling 5”, width totaling 2”.
- Take the roll of duct tape, and roll out 10”, sticky side up on a flat surface. Cut with scissors.
- Line the bottom of the 2” x 5” card stock to the bottom of the 10” duct tape stripe.
- Place the 2” x 5” card stock on the duct tape. Fold the remaining 5” on duct tape of the cardstock, pressing firmly.
Voila! You have a brand new custom-made bookmark. After you’ve accomplished this first project, you’re going to want to move on to something a little more challenging. You’re going to want to test your limits. Let’s learn to make a duct tape wallet!
The Duct Tape Wallet
Duct tape crafts are fun and the materials highly affordable. If you make a mistake, it’s okay. Plus, duct tape comes in bulk! With help from the Boy’s Life Workshop (this is a project they developed), we’re going to take our duct taping skills to the next level.
- Roll of duct tape
- Pair of scissors
- Using a ruler, measure out four 10” strips of duct tape, sticky side up. Repeat. You should have eight strips of duct tape measuring 10” in length each.
- Starting with the first four strips, place each strip, one over another with ¼” overlap. Repeat this step with the second group of 4 strips.Stick the newly formed duct tape sheets together.
- Stick the newly formed duct tape sheets together.
- Cut another 10” strip of duct tape from the roll.
- With a pair of scissors, cut the single 10” strip of duct tape down its center, making 2 1” strips.
- Lay the duct tape sheet on a flat surface. Taking one 1” strip, fold the strip (Sticky side in) over the 10” side. Repeat.
- With a pair of scissors, cut the duct tape sheet so that it is 9” wide.
- Fold the sheet in half hot dog style.
- Cut two 1” x 4” duct tape strips.
- Folding the duct tape sheet hot dog style, attach one strip to either end of the fold.
You have your wallet! To learn to add card slots, visit the Boy’s Life Workshop.
Start slow and take your time, it isn’t a race. Building and making things is supposed to be fun, not stressful. After you have started getting some projects under your belt, stick with it! The sky’s the limit.