Humanities Languages How to Use "Faire" and "Rendir" in French Both Words Can Be Translated as "to Make" Share Flipboard Email Print LM Photo/The Image Bank/Getty Images Languages French Vocabulary Basics Pronunciation & Conversation Grammar Resources for Teachers English as a Second Language Spanish German Italian Japanese Mandarin Russian English Grammar View More by ThoughtCo Updated January 27, 2019 If you're making something and want to say so in French, which verb do you use, faire or rendir? This is more complicated than it may seem, because "to make" can be translated into French in a number of ways. These two verbs are the most common and each has rules governing when and how to use them. General Usage If you're speaking about making something in a very general sense, then you should use faire. For example: Je fais un gâteau I'm making a cake Fais ton lit Make your bed Il a fait une erreur He made a mistake The same rule applies when implying causality: Cela m'a fait penser That made me think Il me fait faire la vaisselle He's making me do the dishes"To make" in the sense of producing something is fabriquer, while in the sense of building it's construire. To talk about forcing someone to do something (e.g., Make me!), use obliger or forcer. Special Cases Things get a little more complicated if you are describing how something makes you feel. In these cases, you should use faire when it's followed by a noun in French, and rendre when it's followed by an adjective. For example: Cela me fait mal That makes me feel pain. That hurts (me). Tu me fais honte ! You make me feel so ashamed! Cette pensée fait peur That thought makes me scared. It's a frightening thought. Cela me rend heureux That makes me happy. Le poisson m'a rendu malade The fish made me sick. C'est à te rendre fou It's enough to make/drive you crazy. There are some exceptions, of course. For the following nouns, you need to use the verb donner: donner soif à quelqu'un to make someone thirsty donner faim à quelqu'un to make someone hungry donner froid à quelqu'un to make someone (feel) cold donner chaud à quelqu'un to make someone (feel) hotBecause all of the above are adjectives in English, you might have a little trouble deciding if the French word is a noun or an adjective. The solution is to think about which French verb it needs to mean "to be." Nouns need avoir (avoir mal, avoir soif) while adjectives need être (être heureux, être malade). Other Verbs Many expressions that include "to make" in English are translated by completely different verbs in French: to make angry fâcher to make an appointment donner/prendre rendez-vous to make believe (pretend) faire semblant to make a decision prendre une décision to make do se débrouiller to make friends/enemies se faire des amis/ennemis to make the grade y arriver to make (someone) late mettre quelqu'un en retard to make a meal préparer un répas to make money gagner de l'argent to make sure s'assurer, vérifier to make tired fatiguer to make up (invent) inventer, fabriquer(after a fight) se réconcilier(with cosmetics) se maquiller Continue Reading How to Say To Do in French How Do You Use the Preposition 'à' Correctly in French? Conjugating the Most Important French Verbs: Avoir, Être, Faire Always Late? You Need to Learn This French Expression How Do You Use French Idiomatic Expressions with 'Faire'? How and When to Use the French Present Participle How to Use Donner in French Idioms How Do You Use French Semi-Auxiliary Verbs? The Moods, Phrases, and Expressions of "Penser" Want to 'Think Twice' in French? Use the Word "Fois' in an Idiom How to Use the French Expression N'Importe Quoi Don't Let Conjugating "Fâcher" Make You "Angry" Angry With Someone? You Can Say This and More in French With 'Contre' Expressions and Conjugations of 'Parler' (to Talk) in French Learning How to Conjugate 'Dire' (to Say) Absolutely! How to Use the French Adverbial Phrase 'Tout à Fait'