Mend and maintain for a sustainable 2020

We all love creating, but what happens after that?

Did you wear a hole in those comfy socks? Did critters munch on your favourite cardigan? Did the lovingly crafted wooden spoon take too many rides in the dishwasher? Loved items see some wear and tear, but if we can craft it - we can mend it!

And we don’t have to stop at the handcrafts either. I’ve darned storebought socks and mysterious holes in cotton t-shirts. I’ve needle felted holes and worn patches on machine knitted garments. It’s win-win really. I can use the garment some more, and the mend makes it more interesting since I don’t have the skills for truly invisible mending and tend to go for visible mending.

Are you in for a more sustainable 2020?

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January challenge
Broke after the holidays? Mend something instead of buying a new one! :moneybag:

February challenge
Rescue something you used to love :heavy_heart_exclamation:

March challenge
Learn how to fix it! Find a tutorial, ask here, go to the library, try new tools… learn how to mend the thing!

April challenge
Visible mending can be an art form.

May challenge
Maintain what you have before there is a problem.

June challenge
Sometimes it’s not possible to mend, but try to turn it into something useful.

July challenge
Share your skills! Mend something using your favourite tutorial and share the link OR create your own mending tutorial for Lettucecraft.

August challenge
Back to school/work challenge. Do you need a new whatsit or could you mend or spruce up something you’ve already got?

September challenge
10 minute challenge. It literally would take you 10 minutes to fix, at the most. So why has it been sitting in the “to be dealt with”-pile for mumble mumble months/years/decades? Do the thing!

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Sounds good! I always mend my clothes. I was raised that way, it wouldn’t cross my mind to throw away something because it had a little bit of damage.

What I’ve done so far:

  • cut up an old teatowel with a few holes into cleaning rags
  • darned a hole in a hiking sock
  • mended a rip in a pair of trousers
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We have become such a throw away society…I agree that many things can have a longer life if we just take a little time to repair it…and being creative makes the item more interesting!

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Perfect craftalong! This is the kind of thing that I usually wouldn’t make a whole post for, but I like to see and share. :green_heart:

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I love this and I’m in! I have a pair of gloves that needs mending. Now to figure out how…

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I’m in, too!

I collect vintage sweaters, and often buy them with a little damage and mend them to wear, and then when they have past the wearability stage I turn them into other things. I also have a small vintage and antiques booth, and one of my favorite things is to rescue damaged vintage clothing from thrift stores and repair it for resale. That way I can keep even other people’s stuff out of the landfill, not just a quantity suitable for me. I mend for my husband and kid, too, of course.

I haven’t yet done anything in the new year, but I’ve got some recent thrift store purchases to clean and repair. I should do that today.

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Now that I’m seeing this, I realize that mending/maintaining skills are the big thing I need to learn in this coming decade. I’ve tried out many crafts, but I have overlooked this area completely. Not that I don’t repair or take care of anything, but there are definite skills to be learned and a lot more salvaging I could do.

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I have a robe that I love. it;s 25 years old and becoming threadbare and I have mended rips a few times. There are more rips and hole. I was debating finally buying a new one (but Im picking and haven’t found one I like) but I think I may mend my robe some more and keep it around a while longer.

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Mending is such a good idea. :slight_smile: I have mended many of my well loved things over the years. I also really like the look of sashiko mending. Or other decorative mendings.

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I had to look this up. It looks really cool.

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love this! I have a basket of things to mend and also want to do some sashiko stitching on my ripped jeans. This thread will be a good reminder, can’t wait to see what everyone is doing!

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Not exactly mending, but I’ve decided it still counts :wink::


I pulled out all the wooden utensils, sanded them and oiled them last weekend. This is the second batch and I put them away after taking that photo. Almost all my butterknives are wood ones, many lovingly crafted by my grandfather. The first tray was filled with those.

Some of the spoons I hardly ever used are way better after getting some love. I think I’ll end up using them more now!

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That completely counts as the “maintain” side of the craftalong! They look fantastic, ready for many more years use. :yellow_heart:

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It is important to maintain wood items…I have a 200 year old Japanese rice bucket that has to be oiled each year…

Your utensils look great…I have a small honey spoon that belonged to my great grandfather…I am told using them carries on their memory…

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This is something I have wanted to get better at. Put up or shut up I guess! Thanks for the nudge in the right direction.

The utensils look great! What kind of oil do you like to use, and would you use a different oil on wood that isn’t in contact with food?

We’ve got some food safe oil for cutting boards, I need to oil ours in fact. And the teak table but that oil is stinky so we’d like to do it before we go away for a weekend, pee eww!

I mend all the things all the time. I’ve gotten behind though. I feel like it’s worth it to do like granny did and keep a basket of mending beside the fave chair or by the bed all the time so you never have idle hands and the pile doesn’t get too big, or kids grow out of things before you sew that button back on/hem back up etc.

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This fab thing sits right next to our sofa:

It’s very early in the morning here, even with the lights on the pic is a bit dark. It’s a present my grandpa made for grandma when they were engaged (in the early 50s). It came with all the contents, sewing threads, darning wool, a million buttons.

I learned to darn from my other grandma, who was the queen of darning. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to do it as neatly as she did.

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Love this idea. I’d always rather fix than replace! :hammer_and_wrench: