February 13, 2013

Zero Waste Essential: The Mending Reflex

Repairs are an essential part of our lifestyle. Things are bound to break or get damaged in one way or another, but mending can extend the useful of our necessities. In our prior life, all the examples below would have ended up in the landfill. Today, our "landfill reflex" has turned into a mending one. Whether it involves scrubbing, sewing, gluing, darning or nailing, there is almost always a solution for a break or damage - and boy does it save money!

Here are examples of my recent projects:

Scrubbing: I thought my slipper was ruined when I found a smear of dried up paint on the calf after a wall paint touch up. My scrubber once again came to the rescue and my slipper is now like new.

Sewing: After 12 years, the padding of Scott’s snowboarding helmet disintegrated and dropped black powder on his face with each use. I cut and sewed a replacement pad into a wornout wool sweater that I have felted for such repairs. The helmet is more comfortable that it used to be!

Gluing: The bristles of my scrub brush were ready for the compost, but the handle was still usable, so I transferred and glued dowel and handle onto a new brush

Darning: My grandmother was a queen at it, and I don’t think I do as good a job as she did, but hey, the result still works (Darning tutorial here)

Nailing: Leo’s flip flop gave out, a nail across the loose bit now holds it in place. It’s been 9 months and it’s not budging!

How have you broken the landfill reflex?