Monday, 28 June 2010

Make and Mend your new iPhone4?

We're all for spreading the art of making and mending, but it's a bit much to shell out  £500-£600 for a state of the art iPhone4 and then find it only works if you follow Mr Jobs's advice to "hold it the right way".

According to Apple you can avoid the problem by avoiding "gripping it in the lower left corner in a way that covers both sides of the black strip in the metal band, or simply use one of many available cases".

As these "many available cases" cost upwards of £25 that's a bit rich after already forking out so much, so  people are resorting to nail varnish or duct tape to get round the problem !

I'm a big Apple fan (I have a Mac, an iPhone and an iPad) but I feel we're all cutting Apple so much slack these days. I had a Genius appointment booked for today to get the casing of my MacBook replaced (design fault that leads to the casing cracking at the front). As I have another unavoidable engagement this afternoon I called the White City store to rearrange the appointment. I was advised by the recorded message that my call was number 9 in the queue. After waiting 5 minutes I was still number 9 so hung up. I tried again 3 more times and each time I was and remained number 9 in the queue. Maybe Apple have figured out that 9 is the magic number that makes people automatically hang up? As they have no traceable email for White City  I've just had to be a no-show. Not very good for them - and whilst frustrating for me I suppose I can always book another appointment as you can do that online even though you can't cancel it.

And the iPhone4 has other problems - yellow spots on the screen, upside down volume buttons and jammed cameras, that are I fear the worst for Apple long term - pissing off your customers this way is never a good idea even if you do make highly desirable products. And when those highly desirable products have to be held together with a dab of vermillion nail polish or a bit of gaffer tape, the magic soon wears a bit thin!

What make and mend methods have you employed to get your Apple gadgets working?

Friday, 25 June 2010

Thrifty idea - get your car to make money for you!

 I recently came across a new website, WhipCar which you can use to rent out other people's cars by the hour, day or week - or even better rent out your own to other people. This is a really nice way to get the most of out of a vehicle and a low cost way of using a car without owning one. If like me, you have to have a car but actually use it only occasionally, you can make a bit of money on the side by letting it out.
Here's how it works.
Car owners. You register your car on the website, you can upload a photo, describe the car's condition, list the mileage etc. You then get a suggested rental price but you can raise or lower this to whatever figure you want. You can also enter dates when your car is available. If someone wants to rent your car you get a text and an email and you can say yes or no.
Renters. You browse the site for suitable cars in your neighbourhood or any location where you want to pick a car up. You find one you fancy and make a booking.
All the insurance is covered by WhipCar once the booking is made. They take a cut of your rental fee and pay you the balance. Once you've registered your car, they send you a little pack to help you publicise your car's availability locally.
It's a cracking idea: a good way to keep car ownership down and to help car owners get the most out of their cars.
I signed up my Mini and within 2 days got a booking - sadly I had to turn it down as it happened to be the one weekend I was actually going away in it - I'm hoping I'll get another booking soon.
Clare F

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Don’t get your knicker elastic in a twist, but…

I'm sorry guys and gals, but I'm ranting again!  I know, I know…when aren’t I?  But this time I'm really fired up.  We've just heard that John Lewis are no longer selling ribbon by the metre, but only by the full roll.  Having had a quick look at their website it seems to be that the average roll is 3 metres. 

3 metres?  Come on! when was the last time that you wanted 3 metres of ribbon?  The average person probably will buy ½ a metre at a time…so what happens to the rest?  Think of the wastage.  I thought John Lewis prided themselves on their green credentials, but I'm afraid there's nothing green about this move.  It's purely down to them boosting their bottom line over environmental issues!  We expected more from John Lewis.

Come on all you Make and Menders – join us and demand your half-metre of ribbon rights. We used to have fantastic fabrics and haberdashery shops in London, but they're rapidly disappearing.  Don’t let the big companies price us out of Making and Mending.

Tell us what you think!

Thanks to our Twitter friend giornalista1 (Andrea Dean) for this info! If you're looking for us we'll be tied to the lamp-post outside John Lewis with the finest ribbons!