Try Making Something That You Really Like

Mattmade Pinot Noir

It’s almost 2020, and there are classes and resources online to help you make just about anything. With these kinds of resources, you can easily make some of your favourite items that you often pay a premium for and you can turn that into a weekend activity or a fun project at home.

Find Something To Make

Look around your place and pick out some things that you use often and ask yourself if you’d be interested in making it. Things on my list were/are:

  • Soap
  • Candles
  • Wine
  • T-shirts (If it’s not obvious by now)
  • Mugs
  • Duffel bags (Sewing in general)

When your list is finished, hop online and see what’s out there! A simple Google search is a great start, however, it’s worth checking out Groupon or alike sites for more complicated projects (Like soap making). In your search bar, “Make your own __item here___” is a good start.

5 Reasons to Make Something

  1. Learn a new skill and to find out how something is actually made.
  2. Have another one (or more) of said item that you like.
  3. Take Pride in creating something yourself.
  4. The experience (classes or projects are fun!).
  5. The opportunity to create a new passion, and maybe a side-hustle.

It May Save Money, Just Not Always

Many crafters and creators will get this more than anyone else. When you create something from scratch, it usually isn’t to save money. All things considered, when you account for time, new equipment and ingredients/materials or classes. This is not a money-saving venture, however, if you end up finding a passion for it, there’s a good chance it will pay off later. Saving Money should not be the reason for making something you love (Unless it’s pasta for dinner, you will almost always save money making pasta at home).

I Like to Bottle Wine

A good while back, I looked after new business development in Eastern Ontario for a large ice cream company. One of my accounts owned a scoop shop as well as a winemaking shop. I was curious about trying it and gave the customer a call and let them know that I wanted to make my own wine. That was about 10 years and several batches ago. To this day, I still visit Luca and Esther at Wine Kitz in Toronto.

Mattmade Reserve – Kind of Like a Winemaking Tradition

Original Wine Label – Mattcave Reserve

Although I don’t crush the grapes myself, I learned a lot about how wine is made through the basic process at this do-it-yourself wine shop.

It’s More Than Just Wine

The wine label is one of my favourite parts of the winemaking process and if you decide to make your own, it makes these 2+ cases of grape juice, your very own. Your labels can be funny, elegant, vulgar…And you can even leave a few bottles blank for gifting special occasions. I didn’t have Mattmade back then, however, I referred to my condo as “The Mattcave”, so I decided on making “Mattcave” wine for my place, the “Mattcave Reserve” lasted several runs and through a few different designs. I banded Mattcave Reserve cigars as well, I guess I can be a bit narcissistic sometimes *shrugs*.

Always Red

If you glanced through my wine bottling history, you’ll see it’s all red, so if it isn’t clear already, I prefer red. Listing a few I’ve done (and enjoy whether it’s mine or not)…Cab Sav, Malbec, Barolo and more recently Pinot Noir.

A batch of wine after I started Mattmade (and learned more about design)

You may also notice something else in my wine labels. In my courses of self-taught design, I can confidently give myself an “improving” grade. As batches continue, it’s cool to see the changes in design.

The most recent Mattmade batch

Why Am I Talking About This?

I’ve taken classes on oil painting, sewing and soap making, I’ve learned how to make so many other things on my own. Whether or not I continued the craft or not, it’s really cool to say “I made that”, and think back on that experience.

With my most recent winemaking experience, it inspired me to talk about the benefits in trying something new on here, and if you go try something new and didn’t have a good time, no problem, just don’t do it again.

If you do want to bottle your own wine and you’re in the Toronto area, I highly recommend you reach out to Luca and Esther at Wine Kitz Toronto. They’re super nice and they’ll make sure that you have a good time while educating you on the winemaking experience. Tell ’em Mattmade sent you (or not, this isn’t sponsored).