General ramblings

My Make Do and Mend Life

August 13, 2012

Hello, and welcome to what has now, I guess, become My Make Do and Mend Life!

In September 2012 we embarked upon a challenge to buy NOTHING NEW for a whole year. We Made, we Made Do and we Mended our way though the whole 12 months, and proved that taking small steps towards a more sustainable lifestyle can make a big difference.
The year may now have officially ended, but the blog, and my quest for The Good Life lives on…!

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  • Reply Jo from three stories high August 28, 2014 at 9:42 pm

    I think you would like my blog. I make lots of new things from old things. I have enjoyed catching up on the adventure, what a great challenge. Jo x

    • Reply Jen September 1, 2014 at 2:32 pm

      Hi Jo

      I’ll check it out-thankyou!

  • Reply HIPPIE-LAND (@happyhippieland) August 7, 2013 at 11:17 am

    I would find this so challenging. With what I do I need to buy new things all the time – but I try to reuse containers and hunt down lovely glass containers at flea markets etc. I admire anyone who is willing to do this.

    • Reply Jen August 7, 2013 at 1:58 pm

      I have been surprised at how easy it has been. Sounds like you are making a good start though!

  • Reply lindasgarden July 4, 2013 at 1:46 pm

    Reblogged this on My garden and it's Wildlife by Wildlife Linda and commented:
    awesome post

  • Reply lindasgarden July 4, 2013 at 1:46 pm

    Just come across you in my August edition of Grow your own Magazine looking forward to following you and getting idea’s I need to improve my sewing shills have a good weekend

    • Reply Jen July 6, 2013 at 8:05 pm

      Hi Linda!
      Thanks for stopping by. Hope you enjoy it 🙂

  • Reply martisanne June 16, 2013 at 8:11 pm

    What a fab challenge, its really quite gratifying isn’t it to recycle,repurpose fix and transform, I look forward to reading more

    • Reply Jen June 16, 2013 at 8:20 pm

      Thankyou! I am having a ball 🙂

  • Reply rockchick May 12, 2013 at 12:55 pm

    What a challenge Jen! With all that you do, and you have made time to incororate a whole year of make do and mend – its inspirational. Am most impressed with you making your own deodorant! Will keep all my bits that can be made into something to pass onto you. Keep it up!

    • Reply Jen May 12, 2013 at 9:22 pm

      Thanks Denise-love that you are a rock chick 🙂

  • Reply Nextstarfish May 6, 2013 at 8:48 pm

    I’m enjoying reading your blog – I think it’s not an insubstantial challenge you’ve taken on.

    I’ve blogged today on my own site about fixing things, rather than simply throwing them away and buying something new – I’ve given My Make-Do and Mend Year a Mention :o)

    • Reply Jen May 7, 2013 at 7:36 am

      Thankyou so much. Fixing is the way of the future 🙂 Loving your blog too!

  • Reply railwaycottages April 7, 2013 at 7:52 am

    This is all inspirational – I love the fact that others are enjoying the satisfaction of making do with what we already have. Having visited the landfill site I now feel guilty if I put “stuff” in the bin – trouble is I end up with “house-fill” instead!

    • Reply Jen April 7, 2013 at 11:12 am

      House-fill, love it! I have to confess to being the same. I’m sure hubby thinks I am becoming a hoarder…
      Thanks so much for reading and leaving such a lovely comment 🙂

  • Reply Carol Stripe (@StitchingCarol) March 13, 2013 at 9:27 pm

    Started doing similar thing last year ( jan 2012), I did spend about £45 during the year, on fabric so failed on not using fabric from my stash. Continuing this year now as I obviously have far too many clothes and too much fabric in my stash. It’s ensuring I wear the clothes I love much much more. A great feeling.

    • Reply Jen March 13, 2013 at 9:39 pm

      I think I could probably go several years without buying any new (to me) clothes, and really making use of what I have, but it is still nice to have the odd ‘splurge’ even it is in the charity shop! Sounds like you are doing a great job, and as you say, very satisfying 🙂

  • Reply cherie March 13, 2013 at 5:33 am

    How’s your challenge going? I’ve learned to darn this year. The front of my jeans has more darning thread than the original weave! I’ve also darned socks which I found to be quite satisfying. Really tired of our culture of cheap goods cranked out by sweatshops and those poor children. Good luck on your adventure!

    • Reply Jen March 13, 2013 at 8:18 am

      Hi Cherie. I am loving it! You are right, mending things gives such a feeling of satisfaction. I have yet to learn to darn, although I have been sent a beautiful bakelite darning mushroom, so I have no excuses-possibly my next project for The Big Mend-a monthly meet up in Bath, where we sit and natter and mend our stuff! I really want to try darning socks, but need someone to knit me some ‘proper’ socks 1st-mine are all cheapo supermarket ones and I don’t think they are darnable!

  • Reply chris January 22, 2013 at 2:18 pm

    I have just found your blog Great Idea I will watch with interest.

    • Reply Jen January 22, 2013 at 5:23 pm


  • Reply Jenny Ingram (@jennyonthespot) January 18, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    I love this! I just adore this idea! So excited to follow along and get inspired some more!!!

    • Reply Jen January 18, 2013 at 4:42 pm

      Yay! Thanks so much for reading. I saw your video about not buying new clothes-great stuff 🙂

  • Reply Sue Adlam October 25, 2012 at 8:33 pm

    I’d like this too!

    • Reply Jen October 25, 2012 at 8:56 pm

      I’m a bit confused Sue. What would you like too?!

  • Reply Eleanor October 2, 2012 at 4:53 pm

    Hi there! I made slipper boots for my family last year, would you like me to put together a little tutorial on how? They were so pleased, they have all requested new ones this year 😀 xxx keep up the good work! x

    • Reply Jen October 6, 2012 at 8:24 am

      Eleanor-that would be awesome! Sorry for the slow response-on hols this week in bonny Scotland with no WI fi and patchy reception…! A tutorial would be brill, feet are getting quite cold..!

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