Waltham Forest’s next Reuse and Repair Fair announced

Make Do and Wonder sustainable fashion
Published: 18 June 2024
Filed under: Climate change

The borough’s second Reuse and Repair Fair of the year has been confirmed for Sunday 14 July 2024 in Langthorne Park from 12pm to 4pm and residents across the borough are invited to come along and get involved. 

It’s a great opportunity for local projects and businesses which focus on reuse, repurposing and repair for outdoor spaces, and that could include tool sharing, play and community gardening. 

So, if you are a local business, sole trader or community initiative with reuse or repair at the core of what you do then please get involved by emailing organisers Artillery Arts

Our free Reuse and Repair Fair is also perfect for families and local people who want to find out more about how to reuse and repair in their gardens or homes. 

The Fair will include: 

  • Free Give and Take (Please bring donations from 11.30am) 
  • Electronics Repair Café
  • Bike Repairs
  • Workshops
  • Live Demos
  • Panel Discussions

Find out much more about the Reuse and Repair Fair on 14 July 2024 via Artillery’s website.  

No wonder first Fair was a huge success

More than 250 people attended the borough’s first Reuse and Repair Fair back in March and hosted a range of activities focusing on fixing and repurposing everyday items around the home, and clothing.

One local organisation involved was Make Do and Wonder (Owned by Suzie Madine, pictured), a slow fashion boutique and gift shop on Wood Street, which specialises in re-fashioned garments.

Rebecca Evans who works with Make Do and Wonder and, helped to run a re-fashion challenge with colleagues, a fun and sustainable activity involving pre-loved garments. 

She said: “We make most of what we sell and usually take ‘unusable’ items of clothing that would otherwise be sent to landfill to be repurposed into new items to go back into the community. It’s about showing the possibilities of what you can do with pre-used clothing and looking beyond the next quick fashion trend.

“We were working with unusable clothing provided by our Local Salvation Army and had some really enthusiastic local people participating, there was a real buzz. 

“Our challenge at the last Fair was about creating lovely garments from donated and pre-worn clothing. This is central for us at Make do and Wonder, but we wanted to let participants at the fair lead with their ideas. We saw some really interesting, creative ideas that really made us think and inspired us.”

Reusing, repairing and buying second-hand, helps the environment and saves people money. It is also vital as we look to reduce waste across the borough and combat the climate crisis.

Rebecca continued: “I’m a strong believer in local identity and local business and hopefully we are offering an alternative in terms of quality and reused materials. Everything is individual and made with care and passion and hopefully that counts for something. Reducing our carbon emissions is vital and it starts locally. If every borough has a plan and people are buying locally then we are making a difference. 

“We want to highlight that a garment that may seem like waste or something to be thrown out, may actually have the potential to be repurposed into something really fantastic with a little love and care.

“I encourage everyone to come along on 14 July to the next Reuse and Fair. It’s an ideal opportunity to find out a bit more about how the circular economy works.”

Tackling the climate crisis and working towards net-zero for carbon emissions by 2030 is a key part of Mission Waltham Forest, which is about making access to council services better and improving the quality of life for local people. 

Mission Waltham Forest has six priorities: Ensure every family and every child are given every opportunity; Build an economy that works for everyone; Make Waltham Forest a great place to live and age well; Tackle the housing crisis head on; Lead the way for a net-zero borough; Safe, green neighbourhoods where everyone can thrive.