Cheap and useful styrofoam

We all know styrofoam. It’s that white light-weight material that protects your goods while it is shipped. It may come as chips, molded pieces or even raw blocks and sheets. It’s used as insulation, shock absorber, modelling material and much more. But most of all, it is cheap! You can buy big blocks of it for a few dollars or find big pieces in your nearest dumpster for free! This is probably why most people see it as trash and not a building material. Well Make: magazine is here to show you how useful it can be! In this particular tutorial they make Halloween tombstone props but if you watch the video, you should easily see how these techniques can be used to make almost any form out of cheap and feather light styrofoam! And by the way, you don’t need special tools like soldering iron or a hot wire foam cutter. Tools like scissors, files, knifes and sandpaper can just as easily be used, although the surface might become a bit rougher. But since acetone (nail polish remover) can melt styrofoam, perhaps you can use a acetone damp paper towel to polish those surfaces? Now that would be a neat experiment!

How to stamp and decorate your leather

Have you ever seen beautifully ornamented leather objects such as saddles, high-end purses or belts and thought “I wish I could do that…”. Well thanx to Bruce Cheaney here is a simple beginners tutorial on how a pattern can be cutted and stamped into leather. In this video, a tool called a “Swivel knife” is also used, and if you don’t know what that is, we have collected the demonstration for you here: What is a swivel knife?

Make your own branding iron!

Wouldn’t it be great if you could mark stuff with your name, slogan or logo in a way that wouldn’t wear of? You need a branding iron! But instead of ordering really expensive ones, you should consider making your own. As this tutorial from John Heisz shows, it isn’t tricky at all. With just an old metal wrench as material and simple tools like drills, files, a hacksaw and an angle grinder, John Heisz makes his own branding iron with the name of his website “I build it.ca” with excellent results! Just watch and learn how you could make your own permanent stamp. And if you need help doing the pattern transfer, check out our How to transfer inkjet prints to wood post, it works on almost any surfaces.

Know your fish!

If you like fish, you really need to watch this video from Gordon Ramsay. It’s not enough to know how to cook a fish, if the fish is of poor quality, nothing can save the taste. But if you know how to spot a perfect fish and avoid the ordinary and bad ones at your local fish monger, your cuisine will taste glorious! Here, fish Guru Roger Barton gives us several great tips on how to tell the best from the rest. Enjoy!

Yogurt balls!

Reverse Spherification is a brand new way of presenting foods, and it is rapidly spreading around all the top-notch restaurants the world over. But as this video from MOLECULE-R Flavors shows, it is not difficult to make at all! In this video they turn yogurt into small balls that looks awesome, but there’s a lot of other things you can do with this technique. So stop thinking inside the box and start thinking inside the sphere!