The Edinburgh Remakery inspiring a repairing culture through its reuse and repair shop

The Edinburgh Remakery is a one-stop shop where customers can buy and donate goods such as refurbished computers and second-hand furniture, as well as learn how to fix electronics and textiles.

Located in Leith, The Edinburgh Remakery is one of five RE-use and Repair Hubs in Scotland, which encourages people to be more conscious of their belongings, offering them workshops, free events and training on how to fix items such as laptops, clothes, bikes and furniture and to save them from landfills.

The Edinburgh Remakery also offer classes, at affordable costs, such as pyrography enabling people to upcycle wood furniture with their own signature designs.

Set up by Sophie Unwin last year, The Edinburgh Remakery and the social-enterprise it is a part of, Remade in Edinburgh, has a vision which “creates green jobs, and fosters inclusion and community at its heart”.

The premise behind The Edinburgh Remakery is not just to teach repair skills in the community, but to generate a repair revolution rather. This means changing the way people use and dispose of resources, encouraging manufacturers to build things to last and to be fixable, and making sure the facilities ​are in place to allow people to repair and reuse.

Since opening The Edinburgh Remakery has taught more than 1,000 people repair skills from upholstery to computer repair, and has tripled its diversion of waste from 70 tonnes to 250.

Like many businesses now wanting to find solutions to the tonnes of waste that ends up in landfills every year, Remade in Edinburgh support a process of reuse and repair rather than recycling.

Sophie Unwin says: “There’s a renaissance in an economy based on sharing and repairing, rather than single-use disposal. Repair creates 10 times as many jobs as recycling. It makes more sense too: because increasing recycling overall doesn’t necessarily mean that waste will be reduced: we need to prevent it first.

“Repair isn’t a new idea – a culture of make do and mend was prevalent in other generations and still is in other cultures. But we need to bring it back into the mainstream, and make it more popular to learn to fix things than opting for a shiny new disposable upgrade. We need to think more holistically about the resources we use, where they come from and where they go to.”

Last year Remade in Edinburgh won UK Social Entrepreneur of the Year Award for its impact, as well as vision of creating a network of remakeries around the UK.

As winners of the award, Remade in Edinbugh received £10,000 to start working with other communities to share their model.

The Edinburgh Remakery

Rosalind Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She is a writer who specialises in sustainable lifestyle and living, wellbeing, music and arts. Rosalind also works as a counsellor, intuitive reader and spiritual life coach helping people to become who they truly are and manifest their heart & soul’s desires into their lives: www.rosalindmedea.com

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