Community repair: a pop-up alternative to the throwaway society

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RUDE Girl mending the purple check flannelette shirt at Mend It, Melton on 8 April, 2017

Us RUDE Guys will head off to Mend It, Melton [MIM] this Saturday 13th May, 2017. We are collaborating with a local organisation to deliver our community’s unique model of mend and make do.

MIM was launched late last year, with a small mending event, at our local railway station in Melton, Victoria, Australia.  The event this weekend is our second for 2017.  MIM has scheduled monthly events up until the end of the year.

You can check out all about MIM and see the photos and videos on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/groups/menditmelton/

The re-blogged article below is recommended reading and validates why Rude Record is involved in the not-so-quiet repair revolution.  Beat The Man!!

Discard Studies

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Shutterstock/Fotos593

By Christine Cole, Nottingham Trent University and Alex Gnanapragasam, Nottingham Trent University

A not-so-quiet repair revolution is taking place in communities across Britain. Consumers, fed up with having to throw away broken phones, toasters and other appliances, are instead meeting to learn how to repair them and to extend the lifetime of their products. These repair “pop-up parties”, where like-minded people can improve or learn new skills in a supportive environment, can prevent still-useful products from ending up in the bin, while saving money.

Advances in technology and new applications, combined with faster product obsolescence, means that electrical and electronic equipment make up one of the fastest growing waste streams in the world. The growing demand for these products is also driving unprecedented levels of resource extraction to keep up with increased rates of manufacturing of everyday goods – something that the planet can hardly support.

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The Purple Stitch

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To be radical is to grasp things by the root.

— Karl Marx

This past week has been busy.  Not frantic busy, just full on.  Us RUDE Guys are staying away from the mall, and Christmas parties are few and far between these days.  However, it still is a busy time of year, when you start to wrap [excuse the pun] things up.

RUDE Girl spoke on local radio at 979FM about Rude Record and Mend It, Melton.  Part 1 of the interview is on our Facebook page @ruderepair.  Part 2 of the interview is to follow shortly.

It seems like it has taken forever to get the launch of Mend it, Melton up and happening.  Earlier in the year, us RUDE Guys had been briefly involved with the launch of the first Repair Cafe for MelbourneThe folks of Melbourne’s inner west, are wonderful, however we had to venture out of our town, to attend repair events.  And we also were keen to create and establish an Aussie back-to-basics, no bulls**t  grassroots ‘in ya backyard kinda’ model.

When the opportunity came up, we cautiously accepted the challenge.  Why?  Melbourne’s western fringe dwellers have very set ideas on how things should look when rolled out.

A steering group was formed by Linking Melton South and it met to discuss possibilities.  It was unanimously decided that our town, would establish its own unique model and use the word mend.  Hence the title Mend It, Melton ~ Fix it, Don’t Flick It.

[Thank you to my Facebook friend and grammar cop Glynis, for the instruction to add the comma between the two words, It and Melton.  It was accepted by the group]

The above flyer by Ben, is advertising the launch in a week’s time.  The logo’s graphic depicts a mechanical cog/wheel and sewing stitches, but these also represent the train and track of the event’s railway location.  The colour green is for nature and keeps environmental issues around waste in the limelight.  Us RUDE Guys requested a single purple stitch be included.  It depicts the radical ‘right to repair’.

Mend It, Melton for us RUDE Guys, has been inspired by those make do and mend generations that went before us, our own personal hands-on trades’ backgrounds, and an unflinching ‘right to repair’ and Beat The Man attitude.  We feel it’s time to share our skills and abilities within our local community.

It is hoped that Mend It, Melton will invite some interest in our local community.  We know it will start slow.  And of course the train station location, whilst ideal for a launch, will have it’s limitations. Why?  There is a small shipping container on site with minimal room for fixers and their stuff.

Time will tell……and if Mend it, Melton does not work out for us, we will still be RUDE Guys, reusing and repairing at home and on-line.  Oh, and there is always that community that awaits our full retirement…..keep watching this blog!

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The Shopping Container at Melton Railway Station.  Image via Linking Melton South

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The Little Library at Melton Train Station.  Image via Linking Melton South

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Mend It, Melton Launch – It’s Official!  Image via Linking Melton South

Grasp things by the root, that’s the grassroots and Beat The Man!!

The inspiration for this blog post came from Reece Harley

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Like Reece Harley, RUDE Girl loves street art.  This was circa 2003 in Port Melbourne.  It was the last time I bought new clothes and shoes.  I only recently discarded the Just Jeans brand jeans.

Flying Solo

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Because RUDE Girl is unwell, RUDE Boy had to go to the local Dream Big festival and promote a new local initiative titled Mend Melton [flyer above] without me.  He met up with Stephen Mack doing a bicycle repair demonstration.

RUDE Boy did tell me that he was complimented at the festival, on his vintage Levis’ #1 denim jeans.  The person thought the sashiko stitching had been done by machine.

 

 

Hopefully we will have more to post about Mend Melton ~ Fix It, Don’t Flick It, in the months to come.


RUDE Boy has been keen to get a VHS-C adapter or VHS camcorder, but was having no luck.  He then decided to explore transferring the VHS-C tape he had, into a standard VHS cassette.

The other day, I was rummaging around in the freebie bin at a local op shop.  In the bottom of the bin were quite a few VHS cassettes.  RUDE Boy rescued a couple of these for his project today.

Below is the link to our You Tube video, that sort of explains, what he wanted the old video cassettes for.  He ended up just needing to use one cassette for this project.

Beat The Man and avoid buying something that can be re-purposed, from what you have at hand [or that can be sourced elsewhere, without too much trouble].

https://youtu.be/hHxr_C3yoSA

Subtle Disruptor

Simple definition of disrupt

to cause (something) to be unable to continue in the normal way : to interrupt the normal progress or activity of (something)

RUDE Girl believes, that for well over a decade, I have been interrupting the course of consumerism by refusing to shop for stuff in malls.  All my life, I have not been a great shopper.  I prefer to save my money for experiences and services.

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RUDE Girl in 2015 volunteering at a community sewing group

There is some anecdotal evidence that a few people [already with like-minded tendencies] are being influenced by my efforts to disrupt normal progress when it comes to consumerism.

This week I talk and share with Adam Murray from Subtle Disruptors about my frugal life on the fringe of Melbourne’s outer suburb Melton and why.

And how with social media, [mostly via Facebook and WordPress] Rude Record is voluntarily sharing tips on reuse and repair of things and why.

Here is the photo of my studio where I was interviewed for Subtle Disruptors.  I hope you will tune in to the podcast this week.

Beat The Suburban Mall!