Is there anything better than finding that perfect audiobook to accompany that perfect crafting session? Probably. But it's still pretty great. If you're a DIY enthusiast as well as a bookworm (or a book-on-tape-worm), then you're always in need of some top-notch audiobooks to listen to while crafting.
I was a bit of a crafting fiend as a kid. My poor parents were subjected to tissue paper flowers as birthday, Christmas, and mother/father's day gifts for years. I made Polymer clay figurines of Shakespeare characters because I was very, very cool. I even went through a prolonged period in high school of altering all my clothes with a sewing machine, to better emphasize my doughy teenage physique.
Pretty much everything I crafted back then is now either broken or too hideous for mortal eyes, but all those years of making garbage did give me a healthy love for audiobooks. As I slashed up all my father's old t-shirts, I listened and re-listened to the Harry Potter audiobooks (team Jim Dale all the way), I discovered BBC radio adaptations of my favorite novels, and I realized that some audiobooks are narrated by their authors. Wild times.
So if you're looking for someone to read you a story while you make DIY lip gloss or upcycle newspapers into a hat, here are some excellent audiobooks for crafty people:
1. A Series of Unfortunate Events written by Lemony Snicket, narrated by Lemony Snicket and Tim Curry
You may have read A Series of Unfortunate Events back in the day, but you haven't fully experienced it until you've heard the audiobooks. Some of the books are performed to perfection by the delightful Tim Curry, and some are narrated in the mournful voice of Lemony Snicket himself. These books are darkly hilarious, even for adults, and the whole series is plenty long enough for a serious, multi-week DIY endeavor.
2. Bossypants written and narrated by Tina Fey
If you're churning out a quick, just-for-fun craft (a classic t-shirt hack, perhaps), you're going to want Tina Fey to talk you through it. Bossypants is pure comedy gold, with an extra helping of career inspiration. If you're a hardcore Fey fan you may have already read it, but it's worth revisiting just to hear Tina reading her own jokes with pitch-perfect delivery.
3. The Ocean at the End of the Lane written and narrated by Neil Gaiman
For the slightly whimsical crafter who still has an edge, try The Ocean at the End of the Lane. It's written and read by the incomparable Mr. Gaiman, and it's a lovely, frightening story about ponds and childhood and witches. This tale is both strange and hauntingly nostalgic. I could see making some wind chimes to this audiobook. Maybe a candle.
4. Why Not Me? written and narrated by Mindy Kaling
Mindy Kaling has the wit of Dorothy Parker and the voice of a cartoon character (but a nice cartoon character, like an adorable mouse who helps the princess). Her second book is so funny and upbeat and real, and it's a great listen for a craft that's going to use a lot of colors. Maybe some sequins. Now is the time to try out that jumbo-sized hair bow DIY you've been so nervous about.
5. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland written by Lewis Carroll, narrated by Jim Dale
For all of us who grew up with Jim Dale's Harry Potter, there is also a Jim Dale Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Yes. This begs for some kind of eccentric hat-making craft, or maybe some sort of DIY tea party set up. If you're crafting something full of childhood whimsy, then it's only right that you should listen to Jim Dale's take on the Mad Hatter while you do so.
6. Lake Wobegon Days written and narrated by Garrison Keillor
For the calm crafter, the crafter who just wants to sit on a porch or under a blanket and knit, there is Garrison Keillor. He's the voice of the radio show Prairie Home Companion, and this audiobook is like a auditory Norman Rockwell painting. Except maybe a little darker and stranger. But Keillor's voice is very calming, and his stories are sweet, humorous, and a little bit wistfully sad.
7. Sherlock Holmes: A Baker Street Dozen written by Arthur Conan Doyle, narrated by John Gielgud, Ralph Richardson, and Orson Welles
This is maybe less of an ordinary audiobook, and more of a radio play. But if you're looking for several classic mystery stories performed by some of the greatest actors of all time, A Baker Street Dozen has got you covered. These mysteries are ideal listening while installing a secret passageway behind your bookshelf, or making a DIY safe in which to hide your priceless rubies.
8. Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue written and narrated by John McWhorter
Maybe you're less of a memoir or a fiction person. Maybe you want John McWhorter to blow your mind and completely challenge all your pre-conceived notions about the English language while you work on your new terrarium. Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue is a fascinating look at linguistic history, full of viking attacks and strange grammar quirks. This is a listen for the word nerd extraordinaire, who likes to think about language while they DIY.
9. The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl written and narrated by Issa Rae
Web-series darling Issa Rae narrates her own audiobook about life, love, society, being super awkward, and eating food. For the awkward crafter who's just trying to get through this DIY without hot gluing their own fingers together, Issa Rae gets you. She's here to bring humor, personal anecdotes, and sly insight into your crafting experience.
10. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Radio Series written by Douglas Adams, narrated by Peter Jones, Simon Jones, Geoffrey McGivern, Mark Wing-Davey, Susan Sheridan,Stephen Moore
If you love The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (or even if you hate it), and you've never heard the radio series, drop everything you're doing and find a copy at ONCE. Break out the glue and the fabric paint and the embroidery floss and settle down for an all night craft-and-listen, because I honestly think this voice recording is better than the book itself. I mean, I love the book. But this recording is just. the. best. Warning: you may laugh so hard that you stab yourself with a knitting needle. Listen at your own risk.