- Internet & the Web
15 Websites For Your Do-It-Yourself Projects
Nothing brings greater pleasure than completing a project. There's something about fixing, planting or building with your own hands that fosters a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment. Some folks are handier than others. They seem to possess an innate ability to not only see the finished project in their mind but to know how to go about getting there. Others like me could do with a little help.. No worries. The internet makes everything a little easier offering amazing resources and step-by-step instructions. Here are some great websites to guide you along.
The Natural Handyman -
Jerry Alonzy, also known as The Natural Handyman has created a website teeming with useful information. You can find links to articles about anything from adhesives to wrought iron all written by Jerry himself or professional contractors and handymen. The Natural Handyman is easy to navigate and includes helpful photos and information for the do-it-yourselfer. Everything from home repair to picking out a Christmas tree is included in the Q & A section. If all else fails, readers can ask a question directly. Best of all, the website offers a Handyman Network where you can find listings for your area. The Natural Handyman is well worth a visit.
This website is a product-driven interactive home improvement and repair guide. The tools of the task are emphasized and you can choose information by category (flooring, garden), by project location (basement, laundry room) or by task (cleaning, wiring). Once you get there, you can find all kinds of product demos as wells as video instructions and how-to tutorials. Each tutorial is accompanied by a materials list and a tools list. Instructions are step-by-step and very easy to follow. Easy2DIY is a comprehensive website for your everyday projects.
Acme How To -
Acme How To is a neat little website for your home repair and home improvement projects. They are big on diagnostics and use plain language and illustrations to get you where you need to be. Acme How To can teach you how to fix your washing machine, resolve plumbing issues, repair a PC or care for your lawn. Their home improvement section is packed with detailed information and resources so replacing that ceiling fixture won't be such a daunting task. A helpful feature of this site is the forum where do-it-yourselfers can share.
At Instructables.com, the sky's the limit. It's a fun website that covers a lot of ground. Here people passionate about what they know and do share their knowledge and skill. Categories are varied and they include Living (gardening, decorating), Food (bacon, cakes), Outside (bikes, survival), Technology (lasers, science), Play (magic tricks, rockets) and Workshop (energy, woodworking). Instructables offers several contests, a forum for discussing projects and great learning videos. If you're handy, you might want to create a new instructable yourself.
DIY Network -
For any kind of home improvement, DIY Network offers expert advice. Their detailed videos and instructions make home repair seem like a breeze. The website is manned by contractors, painters, carpenters and other professionals. Whether you are building a deck or trying to lower energy costs, DIY Network has the answers. This lively site will get the handyman or decorator in you energized. They offer a drop-down Project Finder as well as tips and sweepstakes. The site is easy to navigate and user-friendly.
Learning the basics of any craft has never been easier. Craftzine really does make it possible to do it yourself. From building unique birdhouses to fabric design, the expert crafters here will guide you through. The videos and illustrations simplify the project at hand with just a click on a link. They offer an up-to-date blog, an active community and interesting contests. Their crafters are stylish and modern and their motto is "transforming traditional crafts". If you want to know how to tackle that creative idea, Craftzine may be the place for you.
Bob Vila -
Bob Vila has been around for a long time and is a trusted name in the home restoration business. His website is packed full with ideas and videos not only for the major home renovations he's known for but with everyday home improvement projects. If you are thinking green, bobvila.com offers tips on powering your home with solar energy and creating a recycling center in your home among other green-minded pursuits. The website also emphasizes cost-saving measures to doing it yourself. You can enter a "FIx It Now" sweepstakes, share in the online community and go on some of the interesting tours of historic homes and beautiful gardens.
Auto Repair Yourself -
Even if you're not a mechanic you might want to take a stab at repairing your car yourself. AutoRepairYourself.com is there to help. They provide information not only to assist in diagnosing the problem but in understanding the best approach to repairing it. They list subjects of interest alphabetically for easy navigating. Auto Repair Yourself pulls no punches and stresses safety first. You can click on links providing a list of symptoms, what tools you'll need, trouble codes, manuals and recall bulletins. Included are links to auto repair parts pricing and, if all else fails, where to find a qualified repair shop near you. This is an excellent site worth checking out.
Adafruit is not just a place to purchase kits for your electronic projects, it's also a great resource for support and tutorials. Here you can find the goods you need to build a circuit board or a clock or a robot. But you are not on your own. Adafruit offers an active forum with like-minded people, some great how-to videos and both a chat and technical support team. Based in New York, Adafruit was included in the Pioneer Awards. Especially great is the unique variety of their projects. Make sure you check out the Brain Machine kit which helps you to meditate in style.
Do It Yourself -
DoItYouself.com is a complete site for any project. Though home improvement is part of what they offer, there is so much more. Categories range from woodworking to weddings to pets to natural disasters. Each click on a main link brings you to more detailed links so you can really find what you want to know. They offer tons of tips and tricks and are open to questions from the public. One great feature is the Interactive Room Designer where you can customize the room you want to remodel with drag and drop tools and get a 3D result. And it's free to use. DoItYourself.com will keep you absorbed for a long time.
5min considers itself a "one-stop shop for instructional videos and DIY projects". It is. With thousands of professional videos in over 20 categories and 140 sub-categories, finding solutions to your DIY questions has never been easier. You can hone your cooking skills, learn how to stay safe on wet roads or plant compatible flowers in your garden. 5min.com believes there is nothing you can't learn in 5 minutes by watching a comprehensive video. This is a fun website to navigate and well worth a visit.
For off-the-wall projects and answers to questions like what to do with an old television, Make might be the website for you. A product of the popular Make Magazine, the site will guide you through unique pursuits and fun re-creations. Make has its own YouTube channel where you can learn to make your own "truth meter" or build a chair out of discarded pallets. Their projects are practical but also exciting and different. They offer a Deal of the Day and an active community forum. Check it out.
Curbly.com is a huge site that caters to those who love their homes. Makeovers are their specialty and you can find everything from holiday decorating ideas to practical remodels. They provide all the information you need about costs, tools and skills involved in each project. Most tutorials are displayed in easy step-by-step photographs and instructions. Curbly is friendly and considers itself a community-oriented site. They offer a free weekly newsletter and encourage interaction.
Garden Guides -
Whether you want to start or design a new garden or have questions about the one you have, Garden Guides is there to help. They cover a wide range of gardening tasks both for the beginner and the seasoned gardener. Their gardening experts are knowledgeable and passionate about what they do. From landscape design to insect control to greenhouse construction, Garden Guides offers enthusiastic advice. Joining includes you in a very active communty of like-minded people. Don't forget to check out their "cooking from the garden" section for great recipes.
DIY Life -
This wonderful website feels like home. DIY Life approaches everyday projects like a helpful neighbor. From organizing clutter to fixing a chipped sink, this site uses plain language, vivid photos and detailed videos to get you there. They emphasize using natural products rather than harsh chemicals like pouring a baking soda cocktail down a clogged drain rather than a store bought drain cleaner. Links to other DIY websites are readily available Expert Eric Stromer offers great advice for nearly any task you're ready to tackle.