Darn

So The Boy knocked on my office door, brow furrowed, injured socks in hand.  Now these socks are old…like nearly ten years old.  And they’ve already been mended once.  But they are still in surprisingly good shape, and I’d much rather darn them than knit a whole new pair.  So I fixed them.

For a hole like this I need a couple of locking stitch markers (I use these, love them to bits) and a tiny crochet hook (I have this set, which comes in handy more than you might think for someone who doesn’t crochet) and some yarn (the orange shade from a Frabjulous Fibers color morph on Cheshire Cat in the Yellow to Fuchsia colorway…I had a bit leftover from the cover piece from Curls 3 and it’s what I used on the previous mend so I knew it was a good match), and a darning needle.

I always start by grabbing any dangling stitches and securing them with a locking stitch marker (one per stitch) to keep things from getting any worse while I work (you can see another example of that here).  In this case, there were three that needed to be held in place.

Then, one by one, I use the crochet hook to work those stitches as far back in as much as I can (this is very much like running a dropped stitch back up as you knit).  It won’t fix everything, but it is a good start.

Then I pull off a length of yarn and start duplicate stitching.  I like to make sure I am at least two full rows below the hole and two full stitches to either side of the hole (more is fine, especially if the fabric is thin).  I just leave the stitch markers in place as I work as they help me rebuild the missing fabric.  I can’t tell you exactly how to do it, because every repair is a little different.  But with practice, you get a feel for how the yarn travels and you can repair fairly large areas of missing fabric (this is a tiny bit of missing fabric, like two stitches).

There it is all done!  It’s not invisible, but it will be a bit less noticeable after this is washed and worn a few more times.

And just in case you’re curious, here’s how the mend from over a year ago is holding up.

Totally worth the time to fix it!