Masters of invention

Masters of inventionHere’s a challenge: next time you think you need to buy something, look around and see if you can make it first. Everything can be given a use if you are inventive: bricks, pallets, planks, tyres, hosepipes, shoes, jars, tins. There is no limit to what you can make, and the sense of satisfaction is priceless. It’s never been a better time to learn how to enjoy life without having to acquire new stuff. Here are some ideas to get you started.

1. iStuff

It’s hard to deny our love for electronic gadgets, but the ‘essential’ bits and pieces sold to accessorize them are expensive and resource heavy, and take up landfill space. Fortunately, creative people are coming up with ingenious make-it-yourself instructions all the time. For example, why buy a tablet cover when you can make a minimalistic one from cardboard? Score a piece of cardboard to fit around your tablet, cut a hole for the camera, and cover with your choice of fabric, sewing or using glue. Sew elastic inside the cover to hold the tablet, and use another piece of elastic to keep the cover closed. Need to boost the sound on your iPhone? Get a piece of bamboo, cut a slot on top and tuck your phone in. Putting the phone itself in a single paper cup works, too, as do two ear-pieces from headphones tucked into the bottoms of two paper cups – in stereo. The simplest answer: put your phone in a small round bowl, and let its curves amplify the sound.

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