Repairing Your Knits – Darning

Repairing Your Knits – Darning


This video is the first of a new series that
I’m putting together called, “Repairing Your Knits”, and we’re going to cover darning in
this video. And if you think about repairing your knits
and you think about repairing socks, “darning” is probably the first word that comes to mind. Although you can use darning to repair any
damage in any knits really, it doesn’t have to be socks, it just happens to be a good
choice for socks most of the time. And the next video that I have coming out
is about patching. Darning, the first one and the next one’s
coming out is about patching, and kind of any time you’re repairing something, those
are two really good choices for repair. But the first thing you have to ask yourself
is, what is my main goal with this repair? Is my goal to have a really strong reinforced
area of the knitting instead of the whole? Or is my goal to make the repair be as pretty
as possible and not necessarily reinforced? So darning is the strong, reinforced repair
and that’s why it’s used in socks is because if you have a hole or wear spot in the heel
or the toe, that all ends up in a shoe and it’s not gonna show. But you might not wanna use darning if you’ve
snagged the shoulder of a sweater, you know, you’d probably wanna use something different. Darning isn’t fooling anybody, darning isn’t
trying to fool anybody, it’s not even knitting, it’s actually weaving. So it’s not trying to match up the stitch
of the rest of the work at all. But the woven area that you make is really
strong and reinforced and that’s what we’re going to show. And what I have here is a darning egg. This is what you… If you’re repairing socks, this is what gives
you a background for working on the sock, you do need something to…you don’t want
the sock collapsing in on itself or anything, you need something in there. So this is a good choice, this is a wooden
darning egg that I got online. You can also use a light bulb if you’re very
careful. I also hear that people use tennis balls. But I’m going to go ahead and work on flat
pieces here. I’m working on these flat pieces because the
stitches are big and you’re able to see what I’m doing better than if I was repairing tiny
stitches on a sock. Anyway, let’s go ahead and take a look, get
right into this. This is a darning patch in a different color,
and I’m doing all of these in different colors so you can see what they are. Obviously, the work would look better if I
did this in the same yarn. But darning is great even if the area that
you’re repairing is super thread bear and terrible, darning is a good choice. And I have just an eaten up terrible bit torn
into this in the back there, and this is something I experimented with that I wasn’t thrilled
with, but it was picking up a stitch and doing the weaving, actually, it’s not bad, instead
of…well, I’ll show you. But this was a picked up stitch and this is…I
stitched around the hole and you’ll see that in just a moment. And this is a third way of darning, where
you do it on the back of work and work up under the purl stitches through. I’m gonna demonstrate, I’m gonna demonstrate
these and show you. The thing that I don’t like about this one
is it still leaves the hole in the front of the work. So there’s that. Anyway, let’s talk about the feather stitch
darning first. There are so many different ways of doing
this really. These are the ones…I’ve tried a lot of different
methods for a lot of different repairs to bring these videos to you, and these are what
I’ve discovered work the best or kind of the easiest to understand work. So, excuse me. What I’ve done here is I’ve worked a feather
stitch around the hole, and this is not a… I wish I had, like, a perfect example, if
this was a perfect example I would be doing this on worn heel of a sock, where there’s
a hole and the fabric is threadbare for a while, you wanna work this feather stitch,
just, like, regular embroidery stitch into the work beyond the threadbare part, you wanna
work it into the strong part. And the way that I’m working the feather stitch
is I’ve come to the front of the work here, at the middle of a stitch, I’m going to go
one stitch away and then come back up in the center of that stitch and then go one stitch
away, excuse me, and I’m gonna close that up one more time. So that’s the feather stitch. I’m sorry, it just started raining outside
and now I’m coughing, wonder if they have something to do with each other. So I’ve gone all the way around and reinforced
this area around the hole and now I’m ready to do some weaving. I think this is pretty fun. I’m going to create my warp stitches, just
what they’re called in weaving, by going under there and back down under the two stitches. And of course, you wanna watch your tension
when you’re doing this. Just make sure it’s nice and even going both
up and down. Now of course, this is…these are pretty
big stitches and so my weaving is kind of loose. But even if you’re repairing a sock, you can
use heavier yarn, you don’t have to use the same yarn wage [SP]. Okay, I have my warp stitches in. And in a sock, you know, the one of the reasons
I said that, is because on a sock you’re going to have much finer weave than what we have
here on this [inaudible 00:06:14] sample. Okay, now I’m ready to work the other direction,
and so I’m just going to weave up and down, up and down, up and down, scootch that down. I’m going the opposite way on the side. You can see this is good sitting by the fire,
having a family conversation kind of work. Whoops, I’m messing up. It’s pretty simple weaving, but I still messed
up. Okay, so that’s how you’re going to work the
patch, you’ll just finish up your weaving all the way through the rest of the feather
stitches, and then the only thing you wanna be careful about is not to tie any knots because
the fact that this is a worn spot means that this, like…this is probably the bottom of
the heel or something, and to put a knot at the bottom of someone’s heel of their sock,
it would end up being very uncomfortable, let’s say that. So this next thing I wanna show you is this
patching with the purl bumps at the back of the work. So I thought this was pretty cool. I’ve got this one started, I’m gonna keep
going here. So you see, this is why this is on the back
of the work, so we can work with the purl bumps. I’m getting the warp stitches going by picking
up the purl bumps, every other purl bump on the back of the work. And you’ll see if you pick up every purl bump,
you won’t…it won’t work. You have to pick every other one and then
alternate on each row, and then when you actually get to the hole, you’re gonna have to skip
over it. This seems to me like a good way of patching
socks if you have an area that isn’t so threadbare. If you can actually see the purl stitches
and, like, the sock hasn’t felted together so much. And yeah, felted fabric or threadbare fabric
isn’t going to be as easy. You know, I think this is pretty fun. So you’re gonna get these stitches in your
warp stitches in like this, and then work weaving over the hole section, the same way
we did in the other one. So those are two effective darning styles,
there was one other style I showed you for picking up stitches and I worked up that sample,
and I didn’t…I think it’s not as good as these two, not as secure as the feather stitch
way or the back of the work way. Anyway, really good ways of making a reinforced
area on a hole, and even if the socks gets worn through again, you can remove the darning
and replace it. It’s not bad, socks will last forever. So this is the first of the “Repair Your Knit”
series, go ahead and click the little “I” if you wanna see the other videos in the series. Next week I have…I think it’s next week,
I have the patching video that I’ve talked about that creates a little bit of a neater
repair to your knits. Good luck.

26 thoughts on “Repairing Your Knits – Darning

  1. First comment!
    Thank you for this video. I've been waiting for this since you posted in IG/FB. Lot's of love to you and your crew😍😘

  2. great series! I cant wait for the patching episode. I had a stroller wheel eat a section of blanket and it still has a hole.

  3. as a young girl my mom taught me the first version you demonstrate. I haven't darned in (honestly) a good two or more decades! But I'm actually going to do some darning. Thank you so much for this terrific tutorial and all the tips.

  4. I'm so excited about this series!this is absolutely God sent!!! I have this blouse that's been in my drawer for months because I just don't know what to do, I love it buy every time I touch it I just make it worse. Lol thank you! Thank you!

  5. I am practicing a lace pattern and was wondering, so the pattern uses about 365 yards of yarn I wanted to practice with cotton thread 20 400 yards (was given two so I am knitting them together so far looks pretty) and was wondering is there a difference in yardage it did just have a weird thought just now????? Totally just confused myself for a moment here… 🙁 my thought now is WHAT???

  6. Thank you very much for your lessons. You are very good explaining, even for those who don´t speak English very well. I've learnt a lot with you! Now, I would like to know if you have any video to teach to repair the stiches, to be pretty, as you say. Thank you.

  7. Thank you for your clear explanations. On the darning one, would it not be a good idea to catch the loose knitted loops from underneath as you go? Just a thought. I use my grandma's darning 'mushroom'. A small handle with a metal dome on the top. It is great.

  8. Staci, help! I think this is the best place to get an answer to my problem. I'm making a baby blanket, knit in the round from the outside in. The problem is that I pulled too hard on the border trying to straighten it out, and I ripped it!!! I'm more than halfway through the blanket and don't know how to fix it. I used a long tail cast on and the blanket is knit in garter stitch. Please tell me there is hope.

  9. I am very glad for these videos on repairing knit items. Always great to have more than one technique on hand for repairing something you've worked hard on. I've mostly darned socks and done small sewn-on knitted patches on Goodwill sweaters. And since they were my clothes, and most of them were black anyway, I was not concerned with a bit of puckering or less-than-pretty patchjobs. Still, I found a lot of these techniques very illuminating. People in my family often come to me for textile repairs, and I'll be more confident in my skills now that I know prettier ways to repair a beloved item.

  10. When should I give up on my socks? I have more than one sock that has been patched multiple times. The rest of the sock is in good condition but the heel and ball always need to be fixed. Is there a way to make these areas stronger while knitting?

  11. the rain is not making you cough, you are a blabber mouth talk, talk and more talk. just darn the dam hole. stupid witch, talk is cheap you dummy. 38 thousand views and only 26 comments you loser.

  12. Kia ora, VeryPink Knits, greetings from New Zealand. I have taken up knitting again after a break of about 40 years, and every time I need to learn something, yours are the most helpful videos. Please understand how wonderful it is to have a generous knitting community online, and that you are such a significant part of this. Arohanui, big love, kia kaha, be strong and share your talent and clarity for many years to come. Sue Galvin, Christchurch, NZ.

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