The big Mend It May round up!

I’m a little late with this.
Half-term, a trip away in our ‘new’ caravan, and keeping the kids occupied threw a (very lovely) spanner in the works, and then a computer that was mis-behaving (needless to say it has been mended…!) and a poorly boy compounded everything and have left me a little behind.

Anyway….what a blast Mend It May was!
Despite my best intentions to be more intentional this year, and to think things though before diving in, I kind of forgot this when I had the idea of Mend It May, and just dived straight in. And actually, I’m pretty glad I did. If I had given myself more time to think, I might not have done it, and that would have been a real shame, as it genuinely felt like it was a useful ‘thing’ for people.

I managed to stick to my plan of posting a #menditmay photo prompt on Instagram each day, and if you search the #menditmay hashtag over there, you’ll find over 500 fabulous pictures of some marvellous mending! I confess to sometimes finding making my pictures of my mending look in any way appealing, but thankfully lots of other people don’t seem to have that issue, and there are some really beautiful visible mends on show.

I had grand plans to blog every day during May, and interview several of my mending heroes. That didn’t quite happen, but I hope that the posts and my musings and rambling on lots of aspects of mending proved helpful. I managed a few tutorials (how to sew on a button, how to darn,  and how to sashiko,) and also fulfilled an ambition to get in touch with Katrina Rodabaugh, and interview her about her take on modern mending and mendfulness.
We also had a brilliant guest post on patching from the guys at Stitched Up.
All of the posts can be found here if you missed any, or just fancy a browse!

I ‘felt the fear and did it anyway’ and pitched some mending related articles to both the mainstream, and online press, and was delighted to find that some of them said “Yes”!
There was this piece here in Collectively, and two pieces in The Mirror – one about how much I think our mending has saved us (I’m going to make you click through to find out..!) and one on 10 easy household mends. And the lovely guys at Offset Warehouse kindly let me do a Mend It May shout out on their Sew Obsessed blog.

It was fabulous to see other people joining in, and also blogging their thoughts on mending. Lots of people expressed themselves far more eloquently than me. Here are a few of my favourite quotes:

Instead of seeing mending as a list of things to get done, I’m trying to see it as an ongoing commitment to care. It is true, mending takes time, patience and effort, but in the process you will be investing in a huge thing: a better common future. Less waste, less shopping for new, more creative expression, more skill-stretching and a deeper connection to the materials that surround you.
Louisa from Worn Values

Mending is an integral part of a thoughtful life that values resources, not an afterthought or something to be shoved in between fresh starts. It is making. Making anew, making useful and beautiful again, making meaningful, making whole. It’s all making.
Jacqueline from Life During Wartime Challenge

In this day and age where it’s seems easier to just go out and buy new things rather than repairing what we already have, mending is becoming a lost art. With the rise of fast fashion and built in obsolescence, fixing what’s broken can seem unnecessary and in some cases, due to intentional design, physically impossible. But for many people, including me, mending is more than just the physical act of patching and repairing, it’s a conscious decision to appreciate the value of what we have, reject the constant pressure to consume and to celebrate the fact that we have the power and skills to make something broken, whole again.
Cintia at My Poppet

And Cintia also made this fabulous video which is well worth a watch if you haven’t seen it already:

Possibly my favourite part of the whole month was the Mend It May Facebook group.
Over 400 people joined in, and it turned into such a vibrant, inspirational and supportive place to be.
People were posting pictures of their mends every day, as well as requests for help and advice, and lots and lots of support and encouragement.
I’ve been nagging asking the group to let me know how many things they have mended throughout the month, so I can tally up the total number of items fixed, and kept out of landfill.
The total so far is standing at over 700, which is AMAZING! And actually, I think it may well be nearer 1000 given the number of people in the group.

And finally I managed to use the month as a sneaky ulterior motive to get on and motivate myself to mend my own things: 2 pairs of jeans, a top and various sugru’d fixed things.

My Mending collage

So all in all, I think we could call it a success.
And it’s something I really want to make an annual feature, and hopefully it will grow each year, and before we know it, we will have fixed the planet…

Thankyou all so much for your input, for joining in and for embracing the magic of mending so wholeheartedly-it has been a total privilege to be a part of this.
I’m left wanting more, more mending, more community, more wonderful exploration of all things mending. And wondering how best to achieve this.
As a starting point, I’ve teamed up with an inspirational lady all the way Down Under in Melbourne to bring you The Daily Fix, and I’ll be back in a day or two to tell you more…!


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