At Brooklyn DIY fests, make new things and fix the old

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Flying contraption broken? Help is available.

If necessity is the mother of invention, then poverty is the abusive stepfather of home repairs. And don’t we know it—you can’t afford to buy new speakers in this throw-away culture, so you ghetto-rig your old ones back to life with paperclips, clothes pins and enough masking tape to preserve an Egyptian king (yes, this totally worked); or you resort to staples to get a few more days out of your rapidly degenerating jeans (not that we’ve ever done that). But DIY chic is, well, tres chic in Brooklyn, and two upcoming events seek to help you realize that, like in those dark ages when people’s hands were used for something beyond a touch-screen phone, You Have the Power to fix it, make it, hack it or rehab it (and maybe keep some of that hazardous E-waste out of the landfill).

First, on Saturday is GetYrFix (starting at 2 p.m. at VOD Space, 99 S. 6th Street, Williamsburg), a home-repair hoedown-throwdown. It starts with individual classes on things such as umbrella repair (holding it backwards into the wind isn’t enough?) and soldering (ooo!), and what David Mahfouda of the Fixers’ Collective calls a “flea market in reverse,” with a you-bring-it-we-fix-it motif.

At 7 p.m. is the main event: an Iron Chef-style fixing competition among members of NYCResistor, Sewing Rebellion and the Fixers’ Collective. Beer, BBQ and dancing are promised throughout the day, along with the caps-pledge, “BRING YOUR BROKEN STUFF WE CAN MAKE IT BETTER.”

Homemade Kombucha, anyone?

Coming in October is the Brooklyn Skillshare, but you can get involved this Friday with the benefit at Glasslands Gallery (289 Kent Ave., Williamsburg). It starts at 8 p.m., costs $7 and will feature headliners XYZ Affair, a solid DIY-core band (i.e. they self-release and self-promote). The band is also responsible for one of the most totally awesome music videos in the past two years, wherein the band uses their DIY prowess to unite Nickelodeon stars from the golden era.

Brooklyn Skillshare is a day with a broad spectrum of DIwhynot? classes meant to expand horizons and share talents, from screen printing and balloon animal twisting to making your own ricotta cheese and Kombucha brewing.

The Skillshare itself is Oct. 10 at Gowanus Studio Space (119 8th Street).

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  1. I’ve never heard of anything similar to this, and I think it is wonderful!! Plus adding a BBQ and beer to the mix never hurts anything ;-)

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