Repair Cafe opens on March 5 and 12



How often do people throw out stuff like cooler bags and backpacks because there is a rip or the zippers don’t work? The answer we all know is heaps and heaps of time as these are cheap and easy to replace!

The sewing team rescued 2 such items at the 12th Feb Café opening.


From our volunteer Sarah -“One repair I really liked was patching a cooler bag. So many of these things probably end up in landfill so it was great to be able to put a patch over a rip in the bag and to repair the zip seam so we managed to prolong its life for another year or two.”
From our volunteer Tracy -“Daisy’s backpack had come apart at the seams at the top. Since it was nylon I could use a lighter to stop the lining fraying further and then stitch it back in place.”

Feedback from visitor Daisy – “Thank you so much for what you did for my backpack today. It was amazing, as good as new, despite your proclamation that it was rough! I am so happy with the job and am very grateful”.

Please visit us in March. All are welcomed. If you haven’t got anything needing repair, just come in for a free trade organic cappuccino or a cup of tea or better still herbal tea freshly harvested from the garden. Then be tempted by some home-made snacks.

All free. Donations welcomed.

Date: Sundays March 5 and 12 ( always the first 2 Sundays of the month)

Time: 1pm to 3pm

Place: Chatswood South Uniting Church Hall, corner Mowbray Road and Pacific Hwy

Lastly make sure you have time to wander over to visit the magnificent Permapatch Community Garden which is a stone throw away and marvel at its lush edible crops!


For more information contact Wendy 9420 4884 or 0410280912
or email repaircafesydneynorth@
Please visit website







It was another pretty hot day on Feb 12. Never mind the heat as we had enough visitors and repairs to keep everyone happily busy. The wonderful Ian is back from his holidays and as you can see he’s back on track!ian-imgp5589

Helen and Liz, our hardworking cheerful helpers welcoming visitors on arrival!

Sarah, one of our wonderful band of sewers fixing a pair of trousers.

Tracy, another talented sewer, stitching and fixing a common landfill item, a backpack with split lining and a crook zipper with Diana Watson visiting from Permaculture Sydney North(a remarkable organization that everyone should consider joining) looking on and waiting her turn for the next fix!

Our multi- skilled and mulit talented Glenda having a much deserved break just about to partake of a yummy home made goodie from the “cafe” side of our Repair Cafe.

WendyB, who pioneered the birth of this repair cafe is hard at work fixing a pair of shoes for Belinda with little Davey looking on. Never too young to learn!




Repair Café Sydney North is open coming Sunday  12 Feb, 1-3pm

A most wonderful write up and photos on Sunday Feb 5 2017  Cafe opening from Mandy Stubbs, President Permapatch Community Garden, Repair Cafe stalwart

“Another fantastic Repair Cafe at the community garden, despite temperatures reaching around 38 degrees! Brave re-users arrived red in the face and damp in the shirt, to have their jewellery fixed, tools sharpened, or just to have a cappuccino and do some knitting. The ukulele players managed some enthusiastic tunes, which were much appreciated and some of us sang and danced along, whilst serving coffees and food, networking and making yet more plans to help the poor old planet. Wendy D. made the usual fantastic array of cake, dips, gluten free and sugar free foods to suit absolutely everybody, from lovely organic produce from her garden (try the rhubarb and lemon cake …..mmmmm….dribble….!), plus some very cool cold drinks from her lemon grass, chocolate mint etc. to keep us hydrated and stop our brains boiling….


Lovely volunteers like Wendy B and Bridget repaired things in between fanning themselves and Big Al sharpened doggedly whilst wiping sweat from his fevered brow, and Arjen got toasted.


Celia managed to look glam whilst fanning herself and keeping us all in order, ably assisted by the hot Helen on the front desk.


Whew! Don’t forget to come along next Sunday 11th February between 1 and 3 pm for another very cool cafe and gain some hot knowledge!”

Written and photos supplied by Mandy Stubbs


Some Repair Cafe success stories

Since we started a year ago in January 2016, we have repaired more than 500 items. That is 500+ less items going into landfill!!!

We have 5 repair “stations”- gadget fixing ie ∗battery operated or stuff with mechanical moving parts, jewellery/ ceramics, sewing of all description including backpacks/umbrellas, shoes and garden tools/knives sharpening.

Below are the success stories from 3 of our wonderful volunteers:


From Arjen: A couple with 5 year old twins brought in a Christmas teddy bear. It was supposed to move and tell a Christmas story upon pressing a switch that was inside its hand but it wasn’t doing that anymore. The boys were really attached to it. However such a bear was not available in Australia anymore, so buying a new one wasn’t an option.

I had to open up the arm by undoing the thread. The switch was sewn onto the hand on the inside, after undoing the threads holding the switch we were able to take it out. Ian and I soldered the wire back onto the switch, stitched the switch back inside the hand after feeding the wire back through the arm, connected the wire back to the mechanism and then went on to put the mechanism back into the bear (which was not that easy, we got it back in place as much as we could and it did the job). The bear works again and can be operated as normal via the switch in its hand. 🙂

Kids and parents were VERY pleased and this was a really rewarding feeling!


From Bridget: Many of the items I help to fix, while not having much financial value, are incredibly rich in memory and meaning. An elderly lady came with a broken bracelet that had been the very first piece of jewellery ever given to her by her father. She’d kept it and worn it all those years. The catch had finally given way but we were able to find a suitable replacement in a box of jewellery bits and pieces that a generous previous visitor had donated. We reattached it to the bracelet and all was good again!”

Bridget is starting a pop up jewellery repair café at her North Sydney studio on Feb 16. Book online


From Glenda: I repaired a lady’s lovely large vase with the whole rim broken and a 160 year old decanter that had also been badly broken around the neck and rim. The same lady even had a small stone elephant who had lost his ball from the end of his trunk! She was delighted with all the repairs and so were we!

When: Sunday Feb 5 and 12 ( first 2 Sundays each month )

Where: Church hall, Chatswoods South Uniting, Mowbray road and pacific Hwy

Time: 1 to 3pm For more information ring Wendy 94204884 or o410280912

All free. Donations welcomed . If nothing to repair, just drop in for coffee and home made cakes and don’t forget to wander over to visit the Permapatch Community Garden.

Repair Cafe opens on March 5 and 12

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