Learn to do it yourself on DIY Day

Celebrate maker culture and help the environment on June 6 at the Peterborough Public Library

Saturday's DIY Day at the Peterborough Public Library will feature something for all interests, whether it's learning to repair small appliances, or creating unique, handcrafted gift items from bicycle parts. The event runs from 1 to 4 p.m.
Saturday's DIY Day at the Peterborough Public Library will feature something for all interests, whether it's learning to repair small appliances, or creating unique, handcrafted gift items from bicycle parts. The event runs from 1 to 4 p.m.

By now, most of us have heard of Pinterest, one of the newer social media networks that have popped up in the last five years or so. Centered on photo sharing, Pinterest users share images of everything from their favorite vacation spots, to pets, to a delicious recipe they whipped up in the kitchen.

One of the areas that Pinterest has become famous for is showcasing do-it-yourself projects. A quick search of “DIY” brings up numerous ideas that just about anyone can undertake at minimal expense. Examples I found to be interesting included a DIY air conditioner made from five gallon plastic pails and a fan, a tin can Wi-Fi antenna made from an old coffee tin, and instructions on how to make a solar hot water heater that cost no more than $5.

For anyone who likes working with their hands and re-using and repurposing everyday items, Pinterest is filled with ideas.

The DIY or maker movement has been growing in recent years, especially with the upswing of social networks like Pinterest. Simple projects that just about anyone can undertake are now more accessible than ever. In an age where cost is a factor for many, DIY has become very popular.

Traditionally, DIY was limited to “how to” content. Entire books were dedicated to the subject of DIY, focusing on how to fix household items like leaky faucets or toilets or how to repair a flat tire. Today, DIY has broadened extensively to include any activity that uses creative skills to design or make something of your own. The all-encompassing term covers everything from baking a cake or making jewelry, to creating your own bird feeders from objects like mason jars. DIY really is a term whose definition is continually expanding and changing.

GreenUP has taken an interest in DIY because it’s an incredibly efficient way to divert items from landfill and give them a second life. When people know how items are made and actually get involved in the process, they are more likely to appreciate their value and think twice about discarding an item. It’s through this interest that we’re bringing together a variety of different community partners to celebrate DIY at Peterborough’s first DIY Day this Saturday.

Happening at the Peterborough Public Library from 1 to 4 pm, DIY Day is a celebration of creating, building, repairing and learning. The focus is on providing skills and encouragement so more of us can take on small projects like repairing broken items, building items from scratch, or creating arts and crafts of our own.

DIY Day has something for everyone. There will be button making, LEGO building, robotics, a writing workshop and much more. Repair Cafe Peterborough will be set up, so you can bring along any items you’d like to have repaired and learn how to fix items on your own.

The Peterborough Community Bike Shop will also be on hand giving you the opportunity to create crafty, recycled gifts for the bike geek in your life.

There will be stations with patterns and parts for key-chains, earrings, bracelets, cards and mobiles will be set up around the hall. All parts are by donation.

Have you ever heard of the term “guerilla gardening”? Peterborough Distribution Inc. will be on hand with their conservation team showing you how to make seed bombs. Seed bombs are an effective way to add some colour by way of native plants and flowers to spaces like a vacant lot or backyard by scattering wildflower seeds. PDI will also be showing those in attendance how they can save on energy this summer with a variety of free programs offered by the utility.

Have you ever wanted to write a short story or novel but just didn’t know where to start? Our host, the Peterborough Public Library, is getting involved by organizing a writing workshop. This is the perfect chance to get an introduction to writing and get your creative juices flowing. The library will also be running a button-making station in the children’s department.

These are just a few highlights of the afternoon. There’s a lot more going on, so be sure to drop by and check out the event.

DIY Day is free to attend and will be happening from 1 to 4 pm in the lower level of the library, which is located at 345 Aylmer Street North. If you’d like more information about the event, check out greenup.on.ca or give Karen Elcombe a call at 705-745-3238 ext. 202 or email karen.elcombe@greenup.on.ca.