14 February 2008

Old School Mending

Remember this sweater....the cute little dolman sleeve vintage wool sweater that I found at the Salvation Army?

I sent it to the dry cleaners and when I brought it home I noticed that it had about 8 moth holes. I started thinking about MENDING...what a throwback! What happened to mending? How many things end up in the Salvation Army just because they needed a little bit of MENDING.

I have often admired old wood darning eggs because of their nice shape and smooth patina. They feel at home in your hand like a good tool should. I went directly to ebay and typed in darning egg and found a large maple wood egg that I won with no other bids for $9.99.

When the egg arrived I sat down with with some crewel yarn and a darning needle and taught myself how to darn. And this is how it is done:


*turn garment inside out
*fit egg under hole and stretch knitted piece over egg
*starting about 1/4 inch away from hole begin to weave your needle in and out of the stitches of the knitted piece
* continue back and forth until you get to the hole then cross over the hole to the other side and pull just slightly to tighten up the hole
*continue weaving until you reach the other side and continue for anther 1/4 inch
*snip thread leaving 1 inch tail


pnutbuttahunny said...

Thank you for posting this, I have a sweater that I love but is so full of holes, I think I could salvage it using this method.

froo*gal said...

I am happy that you found this helpful. It is really much easier to do than I thought. I happened to have been lucky to have a great stash of crewel yarn Crewel yarn can be found at JoAnn Fabrics, Michaels or Hobby Lobby and it comes in a large selection of colors.

Anonymous said...

I've been searching the net for information on how to mend a hole in a wool sweater and came across your blog. I am so happy you posted this. I am wondering whether I can find the "egg" at Joanne's or some other craft/fabric store. Perhaps some other oval shaped object may work as well for mending purposes. I am also wondering how you found crewel yarn to match the color of your sweater so perfectly. The sweater I wish to mend is an olive-charcoal gray color. I will go to Joanne's this week in the hopes of finding matching yarn I can use for mending and a mending egg. Again, thanks for posting. Your photographs are lovely. I'll let you know how I make out.

froo*gal said...

I am so glad that you found your way to my blog. I have not seen a new darning egg but then again I have never looked for one so they may be available. If you have a local antiques mall, I am sure you could find one there. I know that they also made darning eggs out of glass and with that in mind why couldn't you use a small juice glass or a stemless wine glass? As I said in my previous post, you should be able to find a large selection of crewel yarn in many shades at JoAnn Fabrics or Hobby Lobby. Crewel yarn comes in small skeins that sell for a couple of dollars each.


wendy said...

You're so clever!!! I love the skirt on the model too! Is that wearable? I think I'm going to have to get me a darning egg. You know all those hand knit socks get holes so fast, and it would kill me to throw them out!

froo*gal said...

Wendy!....I bet you could find a really wonderful darning egg on your trip to Russia!! Yes the skirt is wearable and fits me perfectly and cost me only $3 at the SA!

Anonymous said...

Hi there, Thanks so much. I've got 9 sweaters to darn, and I desperately needed this information. In lieu of a darning egg I'm using a regular light bulb. Seems to be working great.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this info. It was one of the top links I found when I googled "mend a sweater." I have several in need of mending, and I've been looking for good info. I'm going to try your technique.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for posting this.. I found a very nicely fitting cashmere cardigan in a thrift store.. Alas, with 7 moth holes in it.. I was so disappointed and wondering what to do with it.. Glad to see your hand darning method using crewel yarn. I'll look for a wood darning egg... I guess paper weights made of glass would be a good substitute as well. Thank you!!