Monday, February 17, 2014

Handylady: How to Darn Your Socks

Hey everyone! I don't know about you guys, but I seem to have an unfortunate habit of ruining my socks. They are constantly getting holes! Whether they're getting caught on a wood splinter, run over by the vacuum, or simply worn out, their lifespan is rather limited.

Earlier this week, I decided to take it upon myself to fix my favorite pair of socks. Yes, my favorite pair. And my roommate (who has a similar sock problem) asked me how to fix them without having them get all weird and uneven.

So here is a step-by-step, pic-by-pic how-to of how to fix your socks. It's super simple and easy, though it can take awhile. Use this technique on anything you need to mend, whether it's a hole in your jeans or if you're losing the eternal battle between long fingernails and thin, cheap gloves. And please ignore my less than stellar mani.

Step 1: Put It On
Put on whatever you're mending, if possible. This makes it so much easier to see what you're doing, and you'll be able to get the proper shape and setting of your mend. It also gives you a pretty stable area to work on (though I did find my hip cramping from the odd way I had to sit!).

Step 2: Supplies
 You will need a medium-sized needle, thread in the matching color of your item, and scissors. I find embroidery thread works better than regular thread, as its sturdier and holds up to wear better, but I didn't have any this time around. Regular thread works well; it just means your mend won't last as long.

(More after the jump!)

Step 3: Vertical Stitches 
Thread your needle, using about a yard of thread (more or less, depending on what you're mending). Pick a starting point (I find the top left corner works best for me) and sew underneath the edge so the end of your thread will be under the mend when you finish.

Next, bring your needle down to the bottom of the hole, directly under your first stitch, and do a loop stitch. Pull the thread all the way through until the string is taut. Don't pull the loop too hard, we're not sewing the hole shut. Just make sure you have a straight vertical.

 Bring your needle back up to the top and make another loop stitch as close to your first stitch as possible. Pull through until the line is taught.

 We want straight verticals. Simply keep repeating this all the way across the hole.

 This is what it'll start to look like. The hole will naturally start getting smaller as you sew, but you don't want to try to close it just doing loop stitches. That'll cause your sock to warp and it won't be comfortable to wear.

 And Bam! Lovely verticals all the way across. Make a knot where you finish and cut the excess string.

Step 4: The Mend
 Cut another length of thread (about a yard) and thread your needle. To do the mend, you're actually going to weave a new section of sock. Pick a starting point just outside the hole and begin weaving your needle through the vertical stitches to the other side. Pull firmly, but don't try to close. Loop stitch, and weave back the other way.

 Repeat, repeat, repeat. Your weaving does not need to be perfect. As long as you don't see skin underneath, you'll be fine. As you can see, the hole edges are actually shrinking, which will happen naturally as you loop stitch and weave.

 And Bam! There's your mend!

Step 5: Finish
To finish everything off, knot and trim your thread. My favorite way to knot my thread out is by wrapping the thread around my needle 2-3 times and pulling it through. I usually repeat this 2 or 3 times to make sure the knot is secure.

And you're done!

Let me know if you try this out and how it works for you. Hopefully, the tide will turn in your Holey Sock War, though I still need to figure out where those damn solo socks are disappearing off to. It's neverending! Anyway, I hope you guys find this useful and I'll see you in a later post!


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