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Coffee Cups, Heather Flournoy, Re-Use, Shop Local, Sustainability

Behavior Change: Adopt the Repair habit and Go Tag Sale-ing

  • Extend life of 'disposables'
  • Starting a Re-Use and Repair Group
  • Local Listings
  • You can repair anything!

    Extend the life of ‘disposables: Do you brake for yard sales? I think perhaps it is a natural impulse to want to extend the life of a tool, a shirt, an appliance. How about the impulse to repair? That I fear, is a state of mind of the past, one that we could benefit from bringing back. What do we consider repairable? What do we consider disposables?

    I’d like to see a shift in thinking of anything as ‘disposable’. What does that mean to you? Please post your response below in the comments.

    the repair manifesto

    Check out this really great "Repair Manifesto" from Platform 21

    To me, disposable is an insidious term

    framed by brilliant marketers to compartmentalize our thinking. They’ve done their job. This cup is disposable. This mug is permanent. This shirt is disposable. It’s not worth sewing the buttons back on because new it only cost $11. It will cost me less to replace it than to repair it. This razor is disposable. This packaging is disposable. What if we thought of the resources used to create each item, the distance it traveled to get in our hands, and considered where it goes when it is ‘disposed’ of? If we considered all of those factors, I think each of us would start evaluating each item for its value as a material or for how long its useable life can be extended. Repair would become a habit. Re-use and resale would become the norm. Our system of purchase and dispose is an environmental disaster. I’d love to see a new generation who saw beyond the box, who could think a bit more holistically. Imagine what could change!

    Starting a Re-Use and Resale Group In thinking about this I’ve launched a local Facebook Group for Resale and Re-use. [you will need to be a Facebook member in order to view the group] I encourage you to take a look, and launch one in your area as well. I’ve set it up so that I moderate each membership and posting to the wall. While encouraging contribution, posting of barters, repair services, resale items, and free items, I am also limiting group membership to local people to add a sense of safety among the members. In addition I will be inviting my Meetup Group to host a Good Used Goods Swap Day, and have expanded my Local Green Guide to include repair, consignment and thrift shops. You have the power to help make re-use and repair the norm where you live.

    Here are some links to resources for information on repairs:  my Green Guide with consignments shops listed, the new Facebook Group for Resale and Re-use where local people are already listing canoes, dishes, a Breville juicer and more!

    Vans Bike and Car Repair in Katonah (and they recycle oil, cardboard), the new Noka Vintage Furniture Consignment Shop, and for all sorts of amazing finds and repairs keep up with the Gentleman Hauler in Pound Ridge. If you need something repaired, replaced, a hard-to-find part found, or that new used table and chair set delivered, he’s the man!

    If your sewing skills aren’t up to par, try out the Greener Cleaner and Tailor, right across from the train station. For tag sales this weekend check Craigslist for Westchester Garage Sales. Also just got word that there will be a great moving sale at 157 Beaver Dam Farm Road, Katonah


    Get Involved! Whether you live in our small town or wish you did, join the local green conversation, scheming and news of real gatherings.

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    and the Katonah Green Calendar

    About Heather Flournoy

    I am a writer, social media connoisseur, environmentalist and professional marketer. My personal blog is and my professional website is I love people's stories, and a passionate cultivator of connections, both for myself and helping others to connect. Tell me who you are, what your story is, and I'll tell you who you should talk to. In my own view, I know some of the most interesting, colorful and profound people in the world. You know who you are. Besides all the above, I am proud to say I am a working class single mother who raised a beautiful daughter. I connect deeply with animals, especially horses. I love music, coffee shops, farmer's markets, growing my own food, sustainable agriculture, broad thinkers, the healing arts, and dive diners.


    3 thoughts on “Behavior Change: Adopt the Repair habit and Go Tag Sale-ing

    1. Wow, Heather, you are an amazing woman! What great tips and ideas. Thought provoking, all. Thank you. SVH

      Posted by Silvana | June 4, 2010, 10:08 pm
    2. Hi Heather,

      I agree with what you are doing and am so happy you are doing it! I am disheartened by the disposability of electronics. All those TVs! Computers!

      I know that Toys In the Attic in White Plains is a good source for used high end stereo equipment and instruments.

      My Naval engineer grandfather moonlighted as a TV repairman. He always had picture tubes and the like sprawled out in his workroom. When Dan and I lived in London in the mid 90s, we were surprised to see there were repair shops in every neighborhood. Toasters and other appliances in good repair were featured in the windows….

      I look forward to reading more posts!

      🙂 LB

      Posted by Laura Beth Kerr Gilman | June 6, 2010, 1:44 pm
    3. Hi Heather.. Thank you for all this important information. I really like the idea of reuse, recycle, resale.. Your article it’s very help. Thanks again.

      Posted by Judith | June 7, 2010, 3:10 pm

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