Made from Scratch: Discovering the Pleasures of a Handmade Life

Overview

Discovering the pleasures of a handmade life was a longtime dream for urban homesteader Jenna Woginrich. At 24 years old, living in an apartment in Knoxville, Tennessee, and working as a computer designer, Woginrich was nurturing her dream of learning to homestead. Now, at 27, she’s settled on a rented farm in rural Vermont, where she cares for two working sled dogs, chickens, a flock of sheep, honeybees, a couple of geese, fluffy Angora rabbits, and a backyard garden that ...

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Made from Scratch: Discovering the Pleasures of a Handmade Life

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Overview

Discovering the pleasures of a handmade life was a longtime dream for urban homesteader Jenna Woginrich. At 24 years old, living in an apartment in Knoxville, Tennessee, and working as a computer designer, Woginrich was nurturing her dream of learning to homestead. Now, at 27, she’s settled on a rented farm in rural Vermont, where she cares for two working sled dogs, chickens, a flock of sheep, honeybees, a couple of geese, fluffy Angora rabbits, and a backyard garden that provides much of her own food.

Part memoir and part how-to manual, Made from Scratch recounts Woginrich’s growing independence and the successes and missteps she experiences as she learns to more fully live off the land. By turns upbeat, dramatic, and sometimes sorrowful, her story embodies the experience of the new homesteader  one who is committed to reducing dependence on commercially produced goods while still working a day job to pay the rent. Woven into the narrative, readers will find easy-to-follow instructions for making clothing, playing a musical instrument, preserving fruit, brewing the best pot of coffee imaginable, and much more.

Now available in paperback, this new edition features additional material on moving from Idaho to Vermont, a topic that will delight fans of her blog.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

Urban homesteader Jenna Woginrich worked as a computer designer, but she wanted to live a homespun country life. At the age of 27, she left her Nashville digs and settled into a rented farm in rural Vermont, where she slowly mastered the arts of bee-keeping, raising chickens, sewing her own clothes, and living without 300-channel cable TV. What she learned might not convince you to toss your cell phone and sell your SUV, but, honestly, it will make you at least a little envious. Now in paperback.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781603425322
  • Publisher: Storey Books
  • Publication date: 5/7/2010
  • Pages: 208
  • Sales rank: 310,898
  • Product dimensions: 5.56 (w) x 8.25 (h) x 0.75 (d)

Meet the Author

Jenna Woginrich is a homesteader and the author of Barnheart, Chick Days, and Made from Scratch. She blogs at Cold Antler Farm, as well as Mother Earth News and The Huffington Post. A Pennsylvania native, she has made her home in the mountains of Tennessee, in northern Idaho, in rural Vermont, and most recently in upstate New York, where she lives with a flock of Scottish Blackface sheep, a border collie in training, chickens and geese, a hive of bees, a horse, and several amiable rabbits.

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Sort by: Showing all of 18 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 22, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    All farms have cool names

    I simply adored this book! After finishing each chapter, I began to work out the logistics (in my brain and a little on paper) of having my own homestead and farm animals to go along with it. I love how Jenna made everything sound so attainable, but did not forget to inform the reader of the disappointment associated with the best laid plans and how easily they could fall apart. My usual over exuberance for trying new things (and failing at them) was carefully put in check by Jenna who is a bold and caring soul and a person with whom you could trust to talk you down from a leaning tower (or silo) if she felt you were just a tad out of your scope. Her writing was humorous, motivating and inspiring. She made me want to pack it all in and head out to look for my own stead somewhere in Kentucky. The name of hers is Cold Antler Farm (how cool is that?) and what she has to say about homesteading is very significant in the face of our present economic reality, over the top consumerism and the future of our planet.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 5, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    The Best Way To Break Free

    After completing some undergrad school work at my local Barnes & Noble, I decided to saunter over to the section where books on organizing are kept. There, on a tiny shelf meant for books about farming and green living, I found this amazing gem. <BR/><BR/>For starters, Woginrich is absolutely charming. Her style of writing is natural, and very easy to read. Nothing about this book seems like it should be non-fiction. It has the charm and beauty of a good romance novel, only this love affair is between growing your own vegetables, keeping up with bees, and dealing with bitchy chickens.<BR/><BR/>I have been dreaming of the day I have my own home for a long time, for the very reasons Woginrich writes about: the path to self-sustained living. Keeping a few animals, having a wonderful vegetable and herb garden, and purchasing everything else I need from other local farmers and craftsman. The beauty of her book is not only in her telling the story of someone breaking from the industrial world for a simpler life, but also the tools to help you do it.<BR/><BR/>Each chapter is a detailed account of some aspect of her new life, be it the garden, her chickens, or her first bee hive. Following the subject chapter is a little "how-to", that isn't so much "this is how to do this", as "this is something you can do". Woginrich makes an excellent case for the self-sustaining life style, and should be read by any person who has ever dreamed of eating their own fresh vegetables - or those who have already done so for that matter!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 11, 2011

    Wonderful!

    I could not put this book down! I have read countless books on this subject but Jenna has a wonderful way of telling her story. Jenna will show you that anyone, anywhere with any job can have a better life with a few easy steps!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2010

    Fun and informative.

    Good resource for anyone interested in starting a mini-farm. Whether it be a vegatable garden or having chickens or bees. She writes a section on her own expereince with each, and then writes a section on how you can do it, including resources. She is not an expert, but has enough experince that it would be very helpful to anyone starting out. I really enjoyed reading it.

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  • Posted December 5, 2009

    A Young Person's Journey

    A wonderful and quick read! Jenna takes us through the process of how her young life is unfolding before her, incorporating her discoveries that she actually prefers a simpler way of doing things and loving the animals and country life she has surrounded herself with. I was surprised to discover this woman is not quite yet 30 years old--great writing skills and the wisdom of an old soul. I'm looking forward to her new book and am a daily follower of her blog, ColdAntlerFarm. I hope you'll follow her too.

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  • Posted November 29, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Great book!

    I loved the book "Made from Scratch" by Jenna Woginrich. It shows you can have a simple, homemade lifestyle without having to live on a large plot of land. Very inspiring!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 22, 2009

    Made From Scratch

    Made From Scratch is an excellent book. Although I purchased this book as a gift, the receipient loved it!

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  • Posted September 25, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Wonderful book city people dreaming of the rural life!

    This book is a must read for anyone wanting to live a more sustainable life. I read an excerpt from Jenna's book in Mother Earth News and went the same day to buy the book. I couldn't put it down. She is a great writer and I hope she's working on her next book, because I can't wait to read more of her work. Make sure to check out her recommendations in the back of the book--great websites and books. The other two books I also recommend here were ones Jenna mentioned in her book.

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  • Posted June 13, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Sweet Account of a Young Woman's Journey Foray into Small-scale Agriculture

    This is an enjoyable book. The author is a young woman -- graphic designer by training and trade -- who becomes interested in small-scale agriculture and little-by-little learns how to work towards her dream of being an independent farmer. In the process she finds grounding in mountain culture / music and home crafts.

    The writing improves noticeably as the book progresses. The author's voice gets stronger as she learns from mistakes, finds friends and mentors, and develops her focus. The book is very open and does not shy away from either successes or disappointments.

    Finally, the book, by its very nature, has established something of a virtual community. The author's blog has many followers, nearly all of whom seem to share her interests. Interestingly, the blog readers also seem to support and care for each other. So this book has served as a bit of a community-building catalyst. For that reason alone it is worth a look.

    One can only hope that the author will continue to develop as a farmer and as an individual who shares her story with the rest of us.

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  • Posted May 9, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A Handmade life for everyone!

    Read this book and Jenna will help you see that a handmade life is not an either you do it all or you don't do it proposition. Ease into a handmade life in your urban apartment or your subdivision home, and keep on truckin' (or Subaruin') to your own five acres and freedom. Keep up with Jenna's handmade life at her blog, too!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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    Posted April 8, 2009

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    Posted August 31, 2011

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    Posted January 26, 2011

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