How to Make a Belt From Scratch

Welcome back to Friday DIY, where we spend hours making everyday things, because shopping in stores is for quitters. This week's project is a leather belt, and I was lucky enough to be schooled in the art of belt making by a young man named Maximum Cohen. » 4/05/13 4:45pm 4/05/13 4:45pm

Max used a long metal ruler and a box cutter to cut a…

The Ultimate Gift Guide for Crafty DIY-ers

Got some crafty people on your holiday gift list? Fear not — a present like one of these is bound to please even the pickiest of Do It Yourselfers. (And — self-interested bonus! — it virtually guarantees years of awesome knitted/crocheted/sewn or otherwise home-built gifts for you in turn.) » 11/22/12 4:15pm 11/22/12 4:15pm

A good pair of scissors…

How to Make Your Very Own Absurd Chanel Hula Hoop Purse

As soon as Karl Lagerfeld showed those ridiculous(ly sublime) hula-hoop bags on the Chanel runway for spring, my colleague Dodai and I knew we had to make one. "It's not up to me to say it is chic," said the always-modest Chanel designer after the show. "I thought it was but I cannot say it myself." Well, Karl, we thought… » 10/05/12 7:00pm 10/05/12 7:00pm

How to Give Yourself A Shabby Chic Antique Manicure

Are you ready for a nail DIY? This project explains how you can layer fabric paint over nail polish to achieve something akin to those "antique" and "distressed" paint effects that are so popular on home-decorating programs. (You know the ones where some hyperactive blonde is always convinced that what this suburban… » 7/13/12 7:15pm 7/13/12 7:15pm

How To Turn Your Dress Ideas Into Reality By Making A Custom Pattern

Or: Quick and Dirty Pattern-Draping for Fun and Profit! If you're even a neophyte home sewer, you've probably dreamed of making clothing from your own customized patterns. Commercial patterns are fantastic in many ways — the sheer variety always makes flipping through a pattern book (or browsing vintage reproductions… » 6/08/12 5:20pm 6/08/12 5:20pm

How To Embellish Any T-Shirt (With Designer Natalie Chanin!)

This week's DIY is a t-shirt DIY — which is, in case you haven't guessed, one of my favorite kinds of do-it-yourself project, because of the ubiquity of the raw materials. And this t-shirt DIY comes to you with the help of a very special guest: fashion designer Natalie Chanin, of the label Alabama Chanin. She showed me … » 5/18/12 6:30pm 5/18/12 6:30pm

How To Make Surrealist Schiaparelli Sunglasses

Summer's coming. Couldn't you stand to have some whimsical sunglasses in your life? » 5/11/12 6:20pm 5/11/12 6:20pm

For this project, you'll need: 1) A pair of cat-eye style sunglasses. 2) A variety of beads in complimentary colors (for the 3-D flowers, look for beads made of fimo or modeling clay — or make and bake your own). You'll also need a…

How to Keep Any Strapless Dress From Falling Down

Strapless dresses: is there any other garment that promises so much, but at such high risk? If you've owned or worn a strapless dress, you've probably spent at least one night pulling the damn thing up every couple of minutes. That's because most strapless dresses are too cheaply made to provide sufficient support to… » 4/13/12 6:45pm 4/13/12 6:45pm

How to Master the Art of Ombré Nails

Ombré patterns have been everywhere as of late. The French word ombré means "shaded," and in fashion it refers to pretty much anything that starts out one color and then slowly morphs into another. We've weathered trends for ombré hair, ombré clothes, ombré fur — last summer I even showed you how to ombré dye a scarf. So why… » 3/30/12 6:00pm 3/30/12 6:00pm

How to Make Easy, Fast, Foolproof Bread from Scratch

Outside of a bread machine, this is the easiest bread recipe humans have yet devised. You know refrigerator bread? It's easier than that. You know no-knead bread? It's easier than that. Why? Because it's a no-knead refrigerator bread! Once the dough is ready — and the measuring and mixing only takes about 20 minutes —… » 2/03/12 6:35pm 2/03/12 6:35pm

You Too Can Have Kick-Ass Nails Like Rihanna

When I was watching Rihanna's "You Da One" video, I was struck by two things: one was the incredible shot-by-shot similarity between Rihanna's work and an old Numéro editorial by Solve Sundsbo (which director Melina Matsoukas, who previously was caught ripping off an old David LaChapelle editorial for another Rihanna… » 1/20/12 6:30pm 1/20/12 6:30pm

This Awesome Purse Is Incredibly Easy To Make (Here's How!)

If you've never made a purse before, this just might be the purse for you. My last bag, the envelope clutch, was a great opportunity to explain the basics of leather working and bag construction. But that project had six major seams and nine minor ones. This bag, on the other hand, has two: the bottom and sides are… » 1/06/12 7:00pm 1/06/12 7:00pm

How To Wrap The Best Gifts Without Breaking The Bank

For me, a big part of the pleasure of giving a loved one a gift is in the wrapping. I'm not planning to give or receive many gifts this year — I have enough stuff, for real — but I get such a kick out of wrapping presents that the rest of my family tends to delegate all their gift-wrapping to me. With a few mugs of… » 12/23/11 5:00pm 12/23/11 5:00pm

How To Pluck Your Eyebrows

I love eyebrows. I love the variety of eyebrows people have. I love thick ones, thin ones, long ones, short ones. I love really dramatically arched ones and I love flat ones, too. I have always been into eyebrows. When I was a tween — not that we used that word back then — I used to stare long and hard at each new… » 12/09/11 6:50pm 12/09/11 6:50pm

How To Winterize A Coat

I was raised in a temperate climate — New Zealand, to be precise — but it didn't take me long to grasp the absolute, primal importance of coats in much of North America. (Moving to Minnesota in January will teach you the value of a proper winter coat in, oh, about 15 seconds. Which is about the time it took the parts… » 12/02/11 5:10pm 12/02/11 5:10pm

How To Make A Corinne Day-Inspired Spiderweb T-Shirt

I was looking through some old Corinne Day editorials the other day when I came across an image Day shot of model Rosemary Ferguson for The Face in August, 1993. The story, called "England's Dreaming," was styled by Melanie Ward and it's pretty much amazing (at least based on the bits and pieces I could find online). But … » 9/02/11 7:45pm 9/02/11 7:45pm

How To Do A Polka-Dot Manicure

This week's DIY comes to you with a hat-tip to Sarah Palin. Please don't stop reading: the thinking woman's least favorite half-governor has a pretty fearsome nail game. Don't imitate Palin's politics: bite her nails (steez). » 8/26/11 6:00pm 8/26/11 6:00pm

First, prepare for your manicure. Soak your hands, push back your cuticles, trim and shape…

How To Make An Envelope Clutch

Oh, handbags. Next to underwear, shoes, and swimsuits, it's hard to think of a fashion item with a less attractive cost-per-square-inch. But if you have a few hours, a few beers, some leather and a needle and thread, you too can make a gorgeous, top-quality bag of your own. No sewing machine required. » 8/19/11 5:20pm 8/19/11 5:20pm

Now, I'm…