The sharpest tool in the shed

Category Archives: Local Projects

The sharpest tool in the shed
13th June, 2018

Justin Morrissey is the weekend warrior behind Toolo, Katoomba’s tool library. He took time out to talk tools with the Co-op.

Co-op: Briefly, what is Toolo and how long has it been operating?

Justin: Toolo, is the Blue Mountains Tool Library, an artist run, not-for-profit, volunteer managed group that coordinates a resource hub of shared things for members to borrow.

Co-op: What prompted you to start a tool library?

Justin: I’d seen many similar successful projects overseas that weren’t supported by government, just run by people for people, and it seemed to just make sense to have one in the Blue Mountains.

Co-op: Who are your members and how can people join?

Justin: Members pay a small fee of about less than $2 per week, to borrow items from the library, they can join online or in person at the library, sign a form, present some ID, and then they can borrow to their hearts content.

Co-op: What projects has Toolo initiated since its inception?

Justin: We’ve had all manner of activities, like casting and modelling workshops, digital making and 3D printing demonstrations, an artist in residence program, and the Katoomba Falls Kiosk pop up art space for 9 months. Pretty good going for a library just turning two years old in July.

Co-op: What are your plans for the future of Toolo?

Justin: Toolo needs to have about 300 members to maintain viability, to pay the rent, insurance, and test and tag electrical equipment. Once we have 300 members we are a viable entity that can remain sustainable for future generations.

We plan to continue to educate the wider community about sustainability in the creative industries about innovation and entrepreneurship for creatives. The tool library offers an incredible shift in economies and we hope we can encourage people to join so that we may also be able to employ staff locally to run the programs and become tool librarians.

Click here to join Toolo online or pop into the library at 8 Froma Lane, Katoomba.

Opening hours: 3 – 6pm Thursdays and 9am -1 pm Saturdays.

Repair Cafe for Katoomba

Blue Mountains Food Co-op is joining forces with Toolo to start a Repair Cafe – a monthly pop up where the local community can learn how to fix, mend, restore and reuse broken and worse for wear household items. There are currently 1,500 Repair Cafes worldwide  keeping tonnes of ‘hard rubbish’ out of landfill and ensuring valuable skills are passed on.

If you have repair skills you would like to share please contact the Co-op or Toolo at hello@bmfoodcoop.org.au or toolo.blue@gmail.com

BOOMERANG BAGS LAUNCH
19th September, 2017

Trish Doyle MP officially launched Boomerangs Blue Mountains at the Co-op on Saturday 2nd September. Boomerang Bags are now available at the shop to borrow and bring back, and Co-op members can earn volunteer points for sewing bags until the end of September. (more…)

STUDENTS REDUCE WASTE WITH SCULPTURE
5th July, 2017

St Canice’s Primary School in Katoomba has started its own war on waste this year. Stage 3 students Marley Harrison, Bodhi Miller, Sam Kennedy and Leo Curry tell the story of their Save Our Seas project.

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BOOMERANG BAGS AT THE CO-OP
5th July, 2017

Our collaboration with Boomerang Bags Blue Mountains begins this Saturday at our Plastic Free July Community Celebration at the Co-op where the bag people will be sewing bags, screen printing bag pockets and handing out take home kits.

We have a special opportunity for Co-op Members to volunteer to make bags in our newly appointed sewing room. If you are an experienced sewer and would like to earn your volunteer points sewing instead of working in the shop, you can book in at the main counter but please specify that you’d like to sew.

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BOOMERANG BAGS OFF TO FLYING START
9th May, 2017

Boomerang Bags Blue Mountains have got off to a flying start with working/sewing bees in Katoomba, Springwood and Hazelbrook over the last month. This fabulous community initiative aims to reduce plastic bag use by creating a stock of fabric bags that can be borrowed and returned to bag stations across the Blue Mountains.

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UPCOMING SLOW FOOD EVENTS
9th May, 2017

Slow Food Blue Mountains has some exciting events coming up over the next couple of months, including an interactive art installation for Winter Magic.

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SLOW FOOD CHESTNUTS AND SMALL PRODUCER GRANTS
11th April, 2017

The Great Annual Chestnut Weekend 2017 may be over but chestnut season continues with more Slow Food Blue Mountains events this autumn.

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WORKSHOPS: GROW YOUR OWN WINTER VEG
17th February, 2016

GROW YOUR OWN WINTER VEG 2016

Read a more detailed course outline

AIR BEE & BEE….
5th September, 2014

Have you ever seen a reed bee, resin bee, leafcutter bee, masked bee or blue banded bee? They’re just some of native bees out there in all our gardens. Most native bees are quite a bit smaller than the honey bee we’re more familiar with. There are over 1500 species of Australian native bees, 200 of those in the mountains. Most are semi social or solitary, and what’s perhaps more surprising is that there’s really not a whole lot of research out there about them, including big gaps in our knowledge about their distribution.

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COMMUNITY DINNER AND TALK – A TALE OF TWO STEVES
13th June, 2014

Come share a meal and join us in conversation with Farm and Community Development Manager Steve Fleischmann from Mamre House and local gardening guru Steve Alton to talk about how we can grow more food in the mountains.

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