How do you learn DIY skills, anyway?

  • Written by Steph

One of the key pieces of getting your spending down to 30-40% of your income is doing things yourself rather than paying other people to do them. But how do you learn how to do this stuff…

Mechanic

… in the first place? Well, there are lots of methods, some more well-known than others!

First off, simpler things are often extremely easy to learn from YouTube. I’ve learned to cut hair, change a hard drive in a Playstation, knit, cook a ton of things, and do a bazillion little repairs with the help of handy video clips. I’m always amazed at some of the random things that someone’s made a YouTube tutorial on.

Another great option is your local school board. A lot of high schools make some extra money by offering classes to adults on weekend and in the summer, generally at very reasonable prices. Personally, I took an eight week summer sewing program through the local school board a few years ago, and have had no trouble repairing all my clothes and creating simple pieces ever since! I remember looking through the calendar and being quite impressed by the offerings as well – they had everything from cooking to bike repair. It feels a little like going back in time to be sitting in a high school home economics classroom learning to thread a sewing machine, but overall it’s a fun experience.

Our local library and community centers here in Vancouver also put on a TON of workshops for free or quite low cost, covering a wide variety of DIY ground – I’ve seen a lot advertised for things like gardening, canning, composting, cooking, and so on. I haven’t actually taken any, but they seem like a great option for anyone looking to learn!

Don’t be afraid to ask people to teach you. I’ve learned a ton of skills from other people, and have also taught a lot of people how to do various things. If you know some badass DIYer you want to emulate, just ask!

Finally, don’t be too hard on yourself if you’re starting from DIY-zero. It takes time to learn this stuff, but if you consistently work at it, you’ll be knitting hats and preserving your garden harvest in no time.

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