Must Have Book: Bust DIY Guide to Life

Last Wednesday I had the opportunity to go to the book signing and party for Debbie Stoller & Laurie Henzel's new book the Bust DIY Guide to Life


The signing took place at the same shop where I acquired my Little Red Bicycle yarn, Princess Animal. It's a small yarn shop that lives in the back of the Serendipty card store on Valencia and 21st in the Mission. When my friend Sarah first told me about the book signing I thought simply of meeting Stoller. I mean, it's not often you can meet the lady who is responsible for your craft addition.

What I wasn't prepared for was what this book was actually about. This was no simple encyclopedia of crafts. 


There are 350+ pages of great useable information from growing your own vegetables, starting your own craft business (hmmm!), getting rid of cockroaches, or making a hairdo like the late Amy Winehouse. I even crossed checked my "emergency bag" with the items that they listed for their diy disaster kit. (I ended up adding ziplock bags and fem supplies)

There is even instructions on making a coin purse out of a cassette tape and now I wish I had held on to all those tapes I would get with my Jem dolls.


Like it's title, it truly is a Guide to Life – giving you all the instruction to take control in any part you think needs some help. Hone in on your craft side with friendship bracelets, etched glasses, or tea towels. Try to enhase the foodie in you with making your own mozzerella or one of their fabulous coctails. Take control of your career with resume writing, speech giving, or shameless self promotion. What's more, like all other Debbie Stoller books it's the TONE that brings you in.

This isn't a book talking down to you or reads like stereo instructions – no, it's got a way about it that says, "So you wanna wear your hair in a beehive today at work? Right on! Lemme show you how." It's that inviting tone that makes me consider going out to get some worms to get my compost on.

We should all be thankful that back in '93 Laurie and Debbie decided to put their collective genius to work and begin producing a magazine like Bust. It's led to so many wonderful opportunities and projects that have cumulated to this fabulous DIY book.

Thank you so much to Kathy, owner of Princess Animal for being on the book tour! I really enjoyed making snow globes, having a some wine and talking about the state of feminism. A HUGE thank you to Laurie and Debbie for being so badass. Can't wait to see what you ladies do next!

I'm happy to have an extra copy of this fabulous Bust DIY Guide to Life to give to one of my readers! Leave me a comment on the best advice you've ever received on anything in life (be it car mechanics, cooking, or how to get that darn red wine out of your knitting ;-)) from your mom or any other important female in your world.

(Comments will close Thursday midnight EST)

28 thoughts on “Must Have Book: Bust DIY Guide to Life

  1. Colleen says:

    One thing that I always remember is that “old” eggs peel better when making hard boiled eggs. I’m sure there are many others, though, too!


  2. CyndyC says:

    From the teacher who taught my daughter AP Comparative Government (aka the corruption tour)…RTFQ…read the freakin’ question.


  3. melissa says:

    looks like a totally awesome book!
    thank for the chance to win.
    my amazingly genius therapist is always telling me to not underestimate the importance of self-care.
    it took me a long time to see how truly right she is.


  4. Katie Lynn says:

    My mom taught me how to change a tire. Can’t tell you how many times THAT has come in handy. (I am an unfortunate who is prone to running over sharp metal bits)
    This book looks fantastic!


  5. Patty says:

    From the late Kyle Rae Tucy Sweet – hold your head up high when you walk in anywhere – makes you look like you know exactly what you’re doing – even if you’re petrified!


  6. Jessica Magid-Bernstein says:

    Oo… that book looks great! My mom taught me to always have a glass of wine on hand when cooking :)


  7. Laura says:

    Fix it yourself. If it’s electrical, perhaps you should call a professional, but my dad taught me to always try to fix it myself first.


  8. Maureen says:

    Best advice I’ve ever received was from my mom. One of my closest friend’s dad died suddenly over winter break my sophomore year of college. I wanted to call her to check in, but I didn’t know what to say. My mom advised me to just call, because it didn’t matter what I said. If my friend didn’t want to talk, she wouldn’t answer the phone or would tell me that she didn’t and that calling regularly was the most important thing.


  9. V says:

    Whenver I get stressed out over work, I tell myself: “You are not THAT important. The work is not THAT important. The universe will still be the universe and the world will still go on even if you screw up.” It’s the best advice I’ve ever given myself :-)


  10. Triza says:

    best advice was from a family plummer–my daughter and i have a lot of hair–drano-does not work as i am sure many of you know…he said instead of having me snake this all the time…just use a box of Morton salt and a jug (i use the gallon, not too big) regular Clorox bleach…i swear this works…pour the salt as much as you can put…then pour the clorox…let it go down and continue the process until all is gone…run some water down the drain and wait about an hour…run some more water and it should be clear…i swear the best advice


  11. Kathy says:

    A previous boss of mine used to tell me on a bad day, “You can start this day over at any time.” I do exactly that sometimes, start over.


  12. Christen says:

    Wow! I want this book! I have miles of cassette tape. MILES. Interesting mix names too: “Cruel Broken Glass of Glory” etc. One is “Trooper” and “Cherry Hill Treats” though I know of no place called Cherry Hill. I used to mix up song names and have at it. :D
    Best advice I ever got? Hmmm… I can think of a couple. One is “Never expect anything in return.” It makes me give graciously and I feel really good doing that. Saying it, remembering it, reminds me that I really DO want to give something. So that’s nice. Then there’s “Everybody has faults. When you love someone, you accept their faults. You don’t have to like them, but you accept them, because they are part of the person you love.” That’s really true. And, “Notice it. Let it go.” This is actually from a book, and it’s about mindfulness. It’s about recognizing that negative thinking – even imagining an angry conversation or one from a negative space – can affect your REAL WORLD MOOD. I’m forever falling into this trap, and repeating it over and over, “See it. Notice it. Let it go,” really helps me to stop it before it gets too far.


  13. Trish says:

    My Grandmother gave me this great bit of advice: Learn how to do do as many different things as possible. Learn to knit, sew, cook, bake, woodwork, play musical instruments, etc. If you learn how something SHOULD be done, you’ll save money by doing it yourself when you’re younger and probably don’t have as much money. You’ll be able to spot well-made items and will be able to determine if it’s worth the money or not. Additionally, you’ll learn many different usable skills and more importantly, you’ll learn HOW TO LEARN and how to figure things out for yourself. And finally, it will keep your mind active throughout your life and keep your spirit young as you discover more things and more about yourself.


  14. Erin says:

    My mom likes to pass on this great piece of advice the she received from my grandfather, “Always remember to keep the humor”. It’s a great thing to remember when life feels like it’s getting in the way. If you can find the humor and laugh about it, things are just that much easier!


  15. jamison says:

    one of my fav tips: in a pinch, pens can double as knitting needles (approximately size 10-12 depending on the pen).


  16. Aude says:

    Lots of good advices there!
    From my mom: start the day smiling and with a good attitude, because even if you pout you still have to go through the day and it will a lot less pleasant!


  17. Kathy says:

    I think it’s that you can use windex to clean linoleum floors. It provides a good ammonia clean and some instant shine. It doesn’t work for alot of staining, so every so often you have to give it a proper scrub with a sponge and elbow grease.


  18. says:

    The best advice I ever received was this:
    “If you never say no, your yes doesn’t mean anything.”
    Simple, straightforward, and powerful thought. From a man, however.
    Best advice from a woman, particularly related to crafting? Don’t start with a scarf as your first knitting project. You want to start with a shrug, you start with a shrug. (My sister’s awesome.)


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