You can buy sex toys, or you can pervert ordinary items into sex toys … or you can make your own sex toys (getting hands on, y’know?). This book, the eponymous Make Your Own Sex Toys, contains ’50 quick and easy do-it-yourself projects’. In other words: the details on how to make a whole bunch of sexy and kinky items yourself.
There are five main sections in the book: The Basics, For Him, For Her, For Couples, Storage and Organisers. Note the gender binary, as well as the presumption of duo-relationships. It may have been a simple way to organise the book, but did feel rather limiting. There was also some kink included in the book, but it was mixed in with more vanilla toys, which was a shame.
The book starts with the Contents, followed by a Warm Welcome. The two-page greeting gives a good idea of what to expect in the rest of the book. The style is a raunchier version of every other do-it-yourself book I’ve seen, complete with cute drawings in basic colours (white, orange, brown and green make it feel quite retro). It also clearly outlines what to expect:
This book … aims to offer you a quiet space to experiment and explore in a more intimate, innocent, and inexpensive way, whether you’re going solo or with a partner. Away from the brash, aggressive marketing of the modern sex industry, Make Your Own Sex Toys gives you tips, suggestions, and advice on how to heighten your pleasure with fun, creativity, and style.
Each toy has its own double-page spread, with the time it’ll take, a skill level (I stuck to beginner), what’s needed, the method, and of course pictures and tips. A nice set-up, it made it easy to see if each toy was creatable with what I had to hand.
The Basics covers a history of sex toys, measuring bodily parts on male and female-bodied readers (as well as some educational info about the clitoris and the g-spot), and some health and safety tips. All useful, and I’m glad they were included. The Healthy and Safety pages were especially good, covering hygiene, lubricants, anal safety, and general health(sexual and otherwise).
For Him has some serious amusing toys, if not anything I had any desire to see my men-folk using. That said, from Soapy Suds to Fruity Scoopy, Bubble-Wrap Blow to the Knitted Willy Warmer, they were hilarious to imagine being used! Some made me worry for my produce – and some made me want to update my knitting and crocheting skills, not to mention get silly with the fake fur for a toy like the Teste Tickler. And if you want to make your own fake boobs for him to hump? Well, then Jell-O Jerky is the way to go (although my reaction was ‘erk!’).
The only toy in this section that I actually wanted to try making was called the Ribbon Ring. Alas, it required a curtain ring just the right size for my cock of choice – and that I did not have (the ribbon itself was no a problem – I have way too much ribbon, and thought this’d be a great way to use it). Still, I have the page marked for if one turns up in the future. And if it doesn’t do what I want it to do, it’d make a fantastic cat toy! (What do you call it when you de-pervert sex toys into regular items?)
The For Her toys didn’t do much for me either. A lot of the focus was on vibrating toys – the Cell Phone Climax was one example – penetrative toys, or make yourself pretty toys (pasties, anyone?).That said, I was quite tempted by the notion of making my own Wooden Dildo… one of these days!
For Couples covered a wide gamut: Chocolate Body Paint, a quilt embroidered in sex positions, a double-ended dildo. Lotions and potions, some kinkier items like blindfolds and leashes (and more noted below) as well as some truly strange items like the Strap-On Salami.
Storage and Organisers was the final section, and it exactly what it sounds like. Ways to hang, slide, or box your toys; a Saddle Bag so you can reach all the toys you want while playing, and so on.
There were some great kink toys hiding in the book – although I did wish they had their own section! For some reason the Resistance is Futile cuffs were tucked away in the For Him section, and the Leather Strapper was in the For Her area. A whole two pages in the For Couples section made suggestions for pervertables that can be made from clothespins, cabling, and rubbish sacks – and was followed by James Bondage, which made a restraint device out of an old tuxedo. The same section also had a Cat-o’-However-Many-Tales-You-Want, and the bizarrely crocheted Gimp Mask.
I figured, having read the book, that I should actually make something out of it. Aphrodite was amused by the Gimp Mask and is going to make one in pastel pink for a friend’s submissive, but I went for the simple stuff: I made myself the Leather Strapper. It was pretty simple, and I did it whilst watching an episode of Buffy. I dug my paddle out of my toy box; my glue out of the toolbox; my safety shears and a craft knife for cutting the leather; and my leather scraps which Aphrodite had given me. It was pretty easy to follow the instructions – and before the episode was over I had a made-over paddle!
It looks homemade (I just couldn’t get the leather smoothly-rounded at the edges), but I am delighted with the end result. Not least because Adonis has promised to spank me with it to see how different it feels
Still, there weren’t more than half a dozen toys in this book that I was actually interested in making or seeing made. Your mileage may vary, of course.
Verdict: Have a read, see what appeals, and make your own sex toys for a change of pace.
Here are the details:
Name: Make Your Own Sex Toys, by Matt Pagett
Published by: Chronicle Books
Where to find: SexToy.com, Amazon and on the Chronicle Books site as well.
Price: US $16.94
Worthy of note: Taking this book to a munch will cause a lot of amusement (and borrowage).
Also: The book has an index page, and a resources list at the end.