My Make Do and Mend Life

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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Eleanor - 02/10/2012

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 :D xxx keep up the good work! x

Jen - 06/10/2012

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..!

Sue Adlam - 25/10/2012

I’d like this too!

Jen - 25/10/2012

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

Jenny Ingram (@jenny - 18/01/2013

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

Jen - 18/01/2013

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

chris - 22/01/2013

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

Jen - 22/01/2013


cherie - 13/03/2013

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!

Jen - 13/03/2013

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!

Carol Stripe (@Stitc - 13/03/2013

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.

Jen - 13/03/2013

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 :)

railwaycottages - 07/04/2013

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!

Jen - 07/04/2013

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 :)

Nextstarfish - 06/05/2013

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)

Jen - 07/05/2013

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

rockchick - 12/05/2013

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!

Jen - 12/05/2013

Thanks Denise-love that you are a rock chick :)

martisanne - 16/06/2013

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

Jen - 16/06/2013

Thankyou! I am having a ball :)

lindasgarden - 04/07/2013

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

Jen - 06/07/2013

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

lindasgarden - 04/07/2013

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

HIPPIE-LAND (@happyh - 07/08/2013

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.

Jen - 07/08/2013

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

Jo from three storie - 28/08/2014

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

Jen - 01/09/2014

Hi Jo

I’ll check it out-thankyou!

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