When plans go awry, sometimes we are forced to make the best of it, even if the circumstances are less than perfect. Giving up is usually not an option, and when it is an option, it is probably not the best option. Carrying through even when things go wrong is something we all have to do, and in English, there are several ways to describe this unfortunate situation. One of the simplest is to make do. Both make do and an alternate form of this phrase, make due, have appeared in print over the past 200 years or so, but only one is correct in Modern English. Is it make do or make due?
In this article, I will compare make do vs. make due. I will use each of these words in some example sentences, so you can see how they appear in context. Plus, I will show you a mnemonic device that helps when choosing either make due or make do.
Make-do as adjective:
Make-do shelters dotted the landscape.
Make do as phrase:
Dad would have to make do with an old car.
Use of Make due:
Others make due with less effective treatments. [USA Today]
Make do or make due:
Make do is a verb phrase that means to use what’s available in non-ideal circumstances. Make do is the correct spelling. Make due is a historical variant that is no longer accepted. Today, make do is the only standard variation of this phrase. Make due is a historical form that, although popular in the 19th and early 20th centuries, is no longer used. Since do is a verb that means perform an action, and making do is performing an action using available resources, use the meaning of the word do to remind yourself that make do is the standard version of this phrase.