Darn Sock

June 7, 2016

It is still slow and steady here at Needle and Spindle, so sock darning is about the right pace.

After encountering this wonderful darning technique on Local and Bespoke, I found that a pair of my favourite socks were needing urgent repair.

IMG_3242I found the same yarn in my mending yarn jar because although visible mending is cool, I like how smug I feel that I saved the exact yarn and found it again when I needed it!

IMG_3239You pick up knitted loops from a sound area under the worn area and then knit a patch back and forth on sock needles, knitting an original sock stitch together with a patch stitch at each end to anchor it to the sock. The last row is grafted to the sock stitches.

Not a large act in the world, but nevertheless the life of a useful thing that took time and resources to bring into the world is kept useful.

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  1. Hi Rebecca. My son just handed me the first socks I ever knit (which he took from me as soon as he tried them on). They are wearing through at the heels. This looks like such a neat and fun way to darn them that I am actually looking forward to it. I hope you are all better. It’s nice to see your posts again.

    1. Ah serendipity again! I think the sock call out once they sense we have just acquired a new darning technique! It is a really enjoyable darn Frith, surprisingly so. Thanks for your inquiry on my recovery, it is still taking some time which I am trying to be patient and zen about. It is lovely to hear from you!

    1. Interesting you should ask about the feeling Kim. When I first put them on I could definitely feel the darn and was a little worried. 5 minutes later I couldn’t feel anything at all and would never know from walking, that any darn was there.

  2. Very happy to read your little blog post this afternoon. Your darning technique is so neat and tidy and I will attempt to replicate it on my favourite cardigan which has more than one hole in need of urgent repair.

    Or I could use my Speed Weave loom from WW2 which does exactly the same thing and is a very handy tool to have in your kit.

    Keep on getting better Rebecca. Best as ever….

    1. Dear Lydia, I think it would be a perfect method to use on a cardigan. If you follow the link to Local and Bespoke in the post, you will see how Mary used the technique to repair a friend’s cardigan. I had to look up what a Speed Weave loom was and I found a great explanation on Tom of Holland’s blog. What a marvellous tool! It is so much neater than my attempts at a woven darn!

  3. Hope you are feeling better. I’ve been thinking about you 🙂 you amaze me the amount of things you manage to accomplish even when you are not feeling well! XS

    1. Thanks Suzette! There was period when I was mostly in bed that I did get a lot of knitting done but with the fatigue, not much is happening now. That is probably why I got around to darning!

    1. Thanks Pinry, I agree it is neater looking than the woven method, less arduous too, or maybe I just prefer knitting!

  4. That is really nice darning! Thanks for sharing. I hate to mend and darn but its nice to see you do it well. When my grandmother was very aged and could do little else, she would darn my dad’s wool socks. It kept her busy and feeling like she was contributing. She had a wood darning egg that dad later reproduced on his wood lathe. I have a couple of them. Ah, memories . . . hmmmm

    1. I am not sure anyone really likes darning, so much more fun to make something. But there is something very satisfying about completing a mend and releasing the garment back into the wild again! How wonderful to have a family darning egg that holds such potent memories, a talisman of sorts holding the everyday lives of your grandmother and father.

  5. ahh, I do like to see a bit of thrift and repair happening at needleandspindle – it heralds a return of vim and vigour!

    It was you who showed me the benefit of retaining leftovers from projects for mending down the track, through a post a long time ago. Such a pragmatic act, but it had honestly never occurred to me (being a bit dim, obviously!!)

    here’s to your onward mending of all knitwear, body, and soul

    1. Dear Kylie, I do hope it is the herald of a little vim! I can’t seem to follow knitting patterns at the moment, so perhaps darning is the thing!

  6. Darning makes me feel at peace with the world! While my fall into the ‘visible’ category more by necessity than choice my grandmother’s darning must be somesort of witchcraft. Skills I hope to acquire if not inherit.

    1. Aish, I love the idea of a witchcraft of darning. Your grandmother’s skills must have been a marvel.

  7. That looks lovely and neat! I usually just use the woven technique to darn socks and I do kind of like the patchy look, but this is much smoother.

    1. I too have been a weaver of sock holes Alicia but really not enjoyed the process. This knitted method is actually fun and not just worthy!

  8. That is a great idea. I have some beautiful sock yarn, but am torn as to whether to use it for socks because, face it, socks wear out (and that makes me sad). I considered knitting the socks with replaceable soles, but was concerned about the seam rubbing against my foot and causing a blister. I like your idea.

  9. My grandmother would always do all the darning when she visited my mom. It was a fine stitch and bitch. Your post brought that back to me while your swell patch job made me smile.

    There’s a reason to keep those odd balls of leftovers after a project, eh Rebecca? A little love and two needles set things right once again.

    1. I do think it is good to keep those odd balls after a project, harvesting a little yarn from left overs for future mending. They look like lollies in a jar and are a buffer against knitwear misfortune.

  10. Very neat. As for having the exact yarn to hand when needed . . .

    I tend to ‘darn’ H’s socks like this, when they go through. Mind you, by then they’ll have been reinforced a bit. I keep an eye on them as they come out of the wash, or in off the line anyhow.

    And I (think I) can find the correct yarn to do so!

  11. Darned socks seem extra special in this day and age. How fun that you still had some of the same yarn!

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