Our Mendathon at the Brighton Mini Maker Faire


We were really chuffed to have Dave and Faraz from the Restart Project join us for the mendathon to help with electronic repairs – but they soon turned their hands to help with a range of other repairs too.


Dave got started by fixing a hedge trimmer.IMG_4308

The head of one of the screws was stripped so it was tricky to get into.


Once he got in a multi meter was used to check for any breaks in the circuit as the motor wasn’t working.


A loose wire connection was found and adjustedIMG_4330

which did the trick and brought it back to life! IMG_6231

As the day got busier we tallied the repairs on our chalk board.


One lady brought a well loved bag and Izzie showed her how to fix it.

First the seam was sewn up by hand…IMG_6535

and then the handle.IMG_6536

Before the shoulder strap was turned into a belt!IMG_6537

Mattia brought along a second-hand digital thermometer,IMG_4349

the LCD panel wasn’t displaying information properly.IMG_4337

Once it was opened up he found out the corner of the glass display was chipped. IMG_4312

This meant some of the contacts could not work properly as the circuit was broken.IMG_4328

Handily one of the other stalls at the Mini Maker Faire was selling liquid copper, conductive ink (a smart material)

This was painted on to the chipped corner to build it up so that the circuit could be complete again.IMG_4314

Once the ink had dried and the thermometer was re-assembled the display worked like new!IMG_4325

Ali got to work on the Edwardian cake stand his girlfriend’s Grandmother had given her.


The leg had snapped offIMG_4320

so after gluing and bracing itIMG_4324

he reinforced the join with a screwIMG_4343

and then clamped it and left the glue to set.IMG_4358

Faraz diagnosed the source of the problem with an old iBook G4 that wasn’t charging up. IMG_4282

It needed a new battery to be sourced from ebay and installed.IMG_6546

Tom demonstrated his wonderful darningIMG_4293

repairing a moth eaten jumper with contrasting thread to create a new pattern.

He also showcased his visible mending on a sample jumperIMG_6219

and darned the frayed cuff of a jumper.IMG_4291

Ali completed the mend on Victoria’s kitchen chair by fixing the arm back on and reinforcing it.


He then tested his handy work!IMG_6249

After trying to find out whether we could 3D print a new leg for a table with one missingIMG_6254

we decided to make it a design feature.IMG_6258

One young maker brought along his explorer kit with a broken strap,


Dave showed him what was wrongIMG_6244

and he and his Dad fixed it with a new fitting,IMG_6247

ready for more adventures!IMG_4374

Mattia, as busy as usual,  fixed some speakers by cleaning the connection points.IMG_4364

The Restarters took a look at Victoria’s printer power transformer that had stopped working although it was very new.IMG_6257

After cutting through the heat sealed plastic casing and prising it open the fuse was tested to see if it had blown. This was diagnosed to be the problem, unfortunately as with many electrical goods, the part that needed replacing was sealed in and not readily available to replace so it couldn’t be fixed.
IMG_6265However, over the course of the day our fantastic team managed to save twenty two items from landfill!

Next Saturday 11th October

We will be back at St George’s Church in Kemp Town for a repair café at our usual time of 11am-2pm.

Bring along your broken electrical goods, jewellery and bric-a-brac as well as any clothing or textiles that need mending. We will also have Tom our expert darner on hand to show you how to do some visible or invisible mending on knitwear with holes in.

The Seven Bees Café will be open for business (they do a mean breakfast).

We will post an update on what we got up to at the Brighton Mini Maker Faire soon but in the mean time here is a teaser…


Our next event…

Will be at Circus Street Community Space4which is at the Old Municipal Market on Circus Street (behind the Blind Tiger & next to the Wood Recycling Store)

circusstreet01On Saturday 12th April 11.00-14.00

Bring your bikes, electricals, textiles and jewellery to repair with the help of our volunteers and tools.

There isn’t a café in this space but you are welcome to bring a flask and cake to share
& the Soup Dept. in the Wood Recycling Store next door will be open.

February’s Repair Café


brought some new faces


who were shown how to darn


and patchIMG_3543

to make links


in order to fix jewellery


We had a visit from a lady who is knitting a map of Brighton


& Dan fashioned a nifty bike basket rack


out of coat hangers!




What a lovely evening!!!


More photos to follow!

Thanks to everyone who gave their time and effort to make it happen.

We’re now busy getting ready for this Saturday’s repair cafe at St George’s Church from 11am-2pm.

We’ll have volunteers and tools on hand to help repairs of bikes, electrical goods, clothing, textiles and anything that needs darning.

So come and join us to mend something or find out more about what we do.

Iain will be running the Seven Bees Cafe which does amazing brunches, tea, coffeeand cakes

Roll Up for the Bridge Circus

This Monday & Tuesday we will be holding a mendathon a Brighton University as part of the Bridge Circus Symposium  to see how many things we can fix in two days, whilst challenging people to actively occupy their objects rather than passively consume and dispose of them.


Volunteers will be on hand with a range of skills to help people to fix their things throughout the day in the space between the gallery and the Cafeteria. Bring your clothes, bikes, jewellery and other broken items and we will endeavour to help you fix them.

Find us at Brighton University’s Grand Parade Campus between the canteen and the gallery between 10am and 6pm.

We are looking forward to our new volunteer Christine from Be Crafty joining us to help out with textile & clothing repair.

Friday night fixing!


Tonight we will be holding a repair café at the fabulous Super + Super – A creative hub in the centre of Brighton which shares our mission to learn and share creatively.

Come along from 6.30-9pm.

Bring clothes, textiles, jewellery, ceramics & electrical goods to repair with help from our volunteers and other repairers.

Feel welcome to bring cake too!

Stories from the Street (Mendathon)


We were really fortunate to have a gloriously sunny day when we took our tables, chairs and tools out into the streets of Hanover for the Street Mendathon.


The First thing to be repaired (or at least assessed for which parts were missing) was my old Singer sewing machine. As Tom worked out how it functioned a passing neighbour mentioned she had a Singer sewing machine that she was hoping to get rid of. So off she went to get it and brought back a near identical model which can now be used to repair my Singer!


With the ingenious use of a bit of blu-tac to hold it steady Izzie managed to repair a ring which had become detached using Araldite.


Tom showed Kate how to Darn her slippers on a doorstep



Then whilst Mattia started to show me how to fix my broken lamp, D replaced a broken string and tuned a Kora.


After cleaning up some of the points and a bit of re-wiring and tightening of connections…


the electrical parts were in working order but the missing glass top still needed replacing…


So the Belisha Beacon found left out in the street a few weeks before was carved down…


Until it fit snuggly atop the lamp where it looks like it was designed to be!


There was no rest for Mattia, he went on to help Sam fix her reading lamp


and Andi with her coffee machine that had taken to dripping coffee at a torturously slow rate

IMG_1698All this whilst knees were patched


bag seams were fixed


Zips were repaired


and pockets were mended


Whilst down the road there was another hive of activity where the SpacePlace Repair Café were set up with their radical repairers…

IMG_3690 IMG_3691

Street Mendathon

Think street party but everyone is repairing something!


We are taking our next Repair Café out into the streets of Hanover (Brighton) on the 2nd June from 1-5pm.

We’re encouraging Hanover residents to take their tables & chairs outside their houses and to do those repair jobs that have been put off for another time. It will be a chance to meet neighbours and share repair tips and tools (perhaps even some tea, cake or a bottle).

People who don’t live in Hanover are also welcome to join in.

The Brighton Repair Café will be set up on Jersey Street with textiles, electrical & jewellery repair and perhaps furniture.

SpacePlace will have their Radical Repairers out in Washington street with sewing machines, bike repairs, crochet and darning experts and The Lost Mitten Project.

Anyone who repairs something at the Street Mendathon please take a photo and send it to us via weareonthemend@gmail.com and we’ll post them up here and tot up the total number of repairs!

A4 Mendathon poster all orgs

High Voltage

We were so pleased to have a new volunteer on board for the last repair café… Mattia who has just arrived from Italy with lots of electrical repair skills and brought with him a great kit to help us repair our electrical goods.

IMG_3605   IMG_3539   IMG_3552

Mattia got to work straight away helping to fix my solar powered garden lights that had a loose switch. Stage one was to open up the control box and switch to find out what was going on inside.

IMG_3542      IMG_3558

Then in discovering that one of the small metal sliding elements (which forms a circuit to enable the lights to turn on) had fallen out of the switch and was loose in the control box it was possible to put it back in it’s place.

IMG_3543      IMG_3546

Then putting the switch back into its case we discovered that a small metal sphere was also loose in the control box. This tiny piece of metal is what gives the switch the tension to click into place. So we popped it back in then screwed everything back in place.

IMG_3540      IMG_3560

And hey presto, the lights then worked. It was great to be guided through this process to give me the confidence to open up the device and see what was going on inside without worrying about electrocuting myself accidentally! It felt like detective work and now my lights are fully functioning in time for lighting up summer evenings in my garden.

Then Zosia of Lonely Parts brought along her kettle to fix and found another kettle which had been left out in the street on the way to the cafe. She brought it along in case she needed the parts from one to fix the other, but managed to fix both very easily and went home with two kettles!

IMG_3565 IMG_3568 IMG_3571IMG_3564 IMG_3582


Then Mattia moved on to help Sam repair her reading lamp whilst others darned, sewed and repaired jewellery.



IMG_3597 IMG_3574 IMG_3587 IMG_3591


What a productive day! And to top it all off Donald from Radio Reverb came along to interview organisers and participants, which can be heard if you click here.