Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Darn sock!

Recently I got it in my mind that I wanted to start darning my socks. After I was given a darning egg for Christmas, I got serious about mending any and all socks in my house.

My darning egg, used by my great, great grandmother, and every grandmother since!

In a day in age when it's sometimes easier to throw out socks and buy more, darning really isn't practiced very often. I admit that my motivation leans more toward saving some of my favorite socks than saving money, but I also enjoy darning, believe it or not!

Anyway, I had a request to post about darning, so her it is! My simple, how to darn socks. Be warned, my work isn't beautiful, but considering most of it is on the bottom of the sock, I don't really care.

First, grab your sock! This is mine. It's nice and thick, and I love to wear them to bed. Considering I don't walk in them a lot I'm not sure how this one got a hole, but that's OK.

Place your darning egg inside the sock. Don't pull the sock tight; the egg is more for holding the shape and helping your stitching. If you don't have a darning egg, they aren't too expensive, and you can buy them pretty much anywhere. (Here's one on Amazon.com. There are also some gorgeous, but expensive eggs on Etsy.)
If you don't want to buy a darning egg, you can also use a lightbulb, just be careful that you don't press too hard and break it! (I would have used a lightbulb, but we only have the swirly, energy saving ones in our house. Plus, I have this awesome family heirloom and all.)

Anyway, after you have put the egg in your sock, start stitching! I just a basic running stitch and embroidery floss. You will want to stitch around the hole, starting a little way away from it, to strengthen the hole. When you get to the hole, just stitch across it, without pulling it shut (this will affect the sock's shape).
I told you it isn't pretty! Also, I didn't stitch the hole spots close enough together and had to go back that way, so I suggest trying to get them closer.
Also, I chose a bright color to show you, but you can try to choose a color closer to the shade of the sock. Personally I don't worry much about that because it's on the bottom, but it's a personal preference.

After you have stitched all the way across, turn the sock and go the other way! Weave the thread in and out when you get to the hole. The result is a nice, strong patch!

This is the inside. Usually I turn the sock inside out, but I didn't this time because I forgot. It doesn't make much difference.
Don't tie a knot in your thread, because it will be uncomfortable when you walk. Just keep stitching and cut it off!

This isn't a great picture, but here's another sock I darned!

It was one of the first, so it's not my best. Also, it didn't have a hole, so I was just mending a bare spot. You don't have to wait until your sock has a hole to darn it!

What do you think? Do you recycle your socks, darn them, or just toss them?

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