YNGR: HomeMade

HomeMade: 101 Easy-to-Make Things for Your Garden, Home, or Farm by Ken Braren & Roger Griffith

Planning to Garden this Season?

Now is the perfect time to get started with do-it-yourself projects to improve your planting and backyard experience for summer and fall. Get inspired to choose one or more projects from HomeMade: 101 Easy-To-Make Things for Your Garden, Home or Farm.

The first is a simple sawhorse to build in case you do not happen to own one already.  

Ideas include:

  • Mailbox holder
  • Garden Bench
  • Planter Box
  • Compost Bin
  • Handy Tool Keeper
  • Smokehouse
  • Hotbeds
  • Firewood Box
  • Firewood Brace
  • Plant Supports
  • Strawberry Barrels
  • Berry Boxes
  • Movable Shed
  • Birdhouse

With sketches to aid your understanding, many of the projects can be constructed using upcycled or leftover materials from other projects. If you are handy with a measuring tape, you should be able to change suggested material dimensions to suit your space without too much effort.

Glancing through the various projects, we would say that some of the projects, like the potting table, require basic carpentry knowledge while others are more complicated. You would be well advised to have experience yourself or to work with a partner who does to successfully complete larger projects like the poultry house or horse stable without frustration.

You can find 58 titles in the do-it-yourself category at Allentown Public Library and 1276 titles on the subject of gardening in our catalog. Plus, with your library card, you have access to Garden Guides on Hoopla. Click on the links in this article to find out more.

YNGR: Do-It-Yourself Framed Quilts by Gail Perry

Time to get your DIY on!

Unique, framed artwork can add interest to your home’s décor. If you enjoy making gifts for your friends and family or creating do-it-yourself projects as a way to earn extra cash, you might want to check out Do-It-Yourself Framed Quilts by Gail Perry.

While quilt making dates far back to ancient Egypt, more recent patterns, from Pennsylvania and Ohio’s Amish and Mennonite communities, might be more familiar to you. These include patchwork, log cabin, crown of thorns, double wedding ring, bear claw, and many others popularized in the 19th century.

The nine small quilts detailed in this book, however, are not your grandmother’s quilts! There are florals, impressionist, landscapes, concentric diamonds and more. You’ll be inspired to create designs of your own.

35″ x 40″ Impressionist Quilt

Sized appropriately for wall hanging in typical frame dimensions:

15” x 15”

16” x 20”

20” x 24”

…as well as a handful of others, they’re not so big as to be overwhelming to a beginner. It is fair to say that some prior sewing ability would be helpful.

The best part of this book is its combination of photos, patterns, clear instructions and detailed information about standard matte sizes and the tools you’ll need when you want to begin framing.

There are 67 titles for do-it-yourself projects at Allentown Public Library. What’s your next project?

YNGR: Shiatsu

Shiatsu: Japanese Finger Pressure Therapy, Do-it-Yourself Acupressure by William Schultz

Sometimes older books like this one, published in 1976, are as relevant today as they were when they were brand new.

Illustration from Shiatsu: Japanese Finger Pressure Therapy

In 1954 while living in Tokyo, Japan, author William Schultz enrolled in the Shiatsu Institute. While he continued his education, he moved to California where he was also able to continue his exporting business and his practice. He achieved a Master of Shiatsu, and by the time the book was published ten years later, Schultz was one of only two shiatsu practitioners in the United States.

Shiatsu, the author tells us, is “the oldest written form of physical therapy.”

Compelling are the many ways in which shiatsu, once learned, can benefit one’s health. Nearly anyone can learn the basic techniques covered here to alleviate headaches, relieve neck and shoulder pain, address tendonitis, muscle fatigue and more.

A short read unencumbered by heavy medical jargon and accompanied by photos and drawings that best illustrate the details, this book proves its worth.

We like the do-it-yourself aspect of this particular book, but there are several other books in our collection about Shiatsu which are located in the non-fiction section at 615.822. Would you like to learn more? Click below to link to our catalog.

YNGR: The Home Diffusing & Distilling Handbook

The home distilling & infusing handbook : make your own whiskey & bourbon blends, infused spirits, cordials & liqueurs by Matt Teacher

With the nationwide explosion in popularity of home-brewed and craft brewery made beers, the proliferation of local wineries and sangria fests, a person might presume there’s no room left for infused spirits or whiskey and bourbon blends. For those of you in the latter category—think again.

This little book from the non-fiction shelves of the Allentown Public Library covers a host of possibilities from gin to vodka, and cordials to rum.

Pages resemble your family’s favorite old recipe book complete with Instagram-worthy photos. Amusing quips like these from comedians, politicians and celebrities and keep it simple but interesting.

“There can’t be good living where there is not good drinking.”

~ Benjamin Franklin

After a brief intro and a few comments about the law and safety for DIYers, readers can get the real lowdown on what works and what doesn’t when it comes to adding various fruits, vegetables or herbs to alcohol. Uncomplicated directions with no more than five steps in most cases provide easy to follow ways to create new choices for digest-ifs, or compliments to your dinner.  Reserve your copy