Repairs, fixes, and alterations, OH MY! Don’t let sewing up that shelter tear or patching that hole in your hoodie overwhelm you — we’re here with a list of businesses helping to breathe new life into outdoor gear.
By choosing to repair, revive, restore, and reuse (rather than replace), you’re helping to make the outdoor industry more sustainable and the world a better place. If you’re a hiker or backpacker looking to get your kit back in shape by spring, these stellar companies are ready to make it easy.
An important note: Be sure to wash out that trail stank and clean items as much as possible before sending them out. Otherwise, you may be hit with an unexpected cleaning fee, or have items denied for repair altogether.
Location: Bend, Oregon
This team of expert repair technicians is dedicated to revolutionizing the artisan craft of sewing while benefiting the planet in the process. The process is as easy as shipping out the item, making payment once it’s repaired, and enjoying your gear with as much vigor as you did the day you first took it out on trail.
Location: Seattle, Washington
Services: Repair, laundry, alterations
With more than 30 outdoor companies on their client list, this team of sewers and shakers is making waves by returning piles of torn and busted gear to their former glory. Not to mention, their laundry services for sleeping bags and technical garments could be the key to finally dispelling the *fresh* smell coming from your backpacking gear.
Location: Byers, CO
Services: Repair, laundry, trade-in, alterations, how-tos
With more than 25 years of experience, Ron at Boulder Mountain Repairs offers expert gear repairs as well as trade-ins for their online Garage Sale. From custom modifications to gear-specific laundry services, you can trust your pieces are in good hands: fill out a BMR Repair Form to get started in returning your hiking kit to its former glory.
Location: Portland, OR
Services: Footwear repair, gear repair, patches, zippers, alterations
From snowshoes to hiking shoes and everything in between, if you wear it on your feet for outdoor recreation, odds are Mountain Soles and Outdoor Threads can fix it. This shop is also able to help with other types of gear repair too — tents, puffy coats and more! Peruse their website to find specific prices, watch video FAQs on the repair process, and get the process started. Local to the Portland area? You can drop off repairs at nearby REI or Patagonia stores here.
For resoling rock climbing shoes specifically, check out Rock & Resole based in Boulder, CO to see what they can do to get you back on the crag.
Location: Slovenia, Europe
Services: Repair, custom products
“Repairs are like scars. The more we have, the more stories we have to tell.” Meet Neza, Slovenian crafter of custom gear and repair extraordinaire. If you’re looking for individualized support, care, Neza is your girl.
Local Shops and Seamstresses
Who doesn’t love supporting the local community and eliminating shipping costs in the process? Hit up various platforms for local options including NextDoor and Facebook Groups, or simply give “gear repair near me” a Google and see what comes up! Abilities and services may vary, so don’t get discouraged if your shelter or sleeping bag is outside the scope of the first number you try.
Another good option is to head to your local gear outfitter or outdoor store for additional recommendations of gear repair technicians in the area. If you’re lucky, you may have a stellar resource serving your local community, like Feral in Denver or Needle & Shred in the Tetons, with in-house teams ready to get your gear back on trail.
Manufacturer Repair and Buy-Back Programs
If you’re a loyal brand shopper, you may already be familiar with some manufacturer-specific policies in place to repair the gear you hold dear. Patagonia’s Worn Wear Program has an option to trade-in used gear, and REI is following suit with a new option for members only, which provides store credit in exchange for gently used gear. Chaco offers restrapping and resoling at their repair facility in Rockford, Michigan, and their Fit For Adventure Tour does a yearly route to large cities where they offer sandal repair for free. As far as cottage gear companies go, I’ve used LiteAF’s repair policy before, and received my pack back faster than I could plan my next adventure.
DIY Gear Repair
With the right tools and supplies, many basic gear fixes can actually be done DIY at home. GGG sells a variety of GearAid products including Tenacious Tape, gear patches, seam grip and a sewing kit. For a quick tutorial, check out Tenacious Tape 101: How to Patch Sleeping Pads, Puffy Jackets & More!
What piece of outdoor gear have you repurposed or repaired? Are you proud of the results? Let us know in the comments below!