Saturday, March 11, 2023

The darning begins

One nice thing about writing regular Hugs again is that I've been looking over the ones from years ago when our house was still small and I had no time to write fiction. I was so creative! Somehow I was posting five times a week about fresh things I'd made or was making. Now, I'm lucky to get an hour of knitting one day in seven. I'd forgotten how much I love sitting with yarn. So I decided to set out a project in plain view, to encourage me to pick it up. And because my cup was runnething over (seriously, socks spilling off the shelf by my favourite chair), I picked The Darning. 

It's a sad task but this display looks kind of cute, I think. I added in another few skeins of sock yarn to wind into cakes, too, because my supply of sock kits is getting low. Backdrop! Isn't it lucky I couldn't let go of all those little yarn ends all these years? They are the perfect length for patching holes.

But that photo only shows half of the problem. There was a second vintage Pyrex mixing bowl in the offing.

Because any dye is going to fade inside boots that are actively walking, it's not possible to perfectly match colours with unused yarn, but you can make a start. And when I made my start, what a hash it was. 

This heel looks like a roiling cauldron. To be fair, I was resolving a pretty substantial hole. If only that could justify that random line of brown running through perfectly healthy knit stitches. Oh well, nobody will see it except you guys. And eventually it will felt into place and seem intentional.

I did better with a later pair. Its heel was still intact, but thinning dangerously.

Hmmm. Okay, maybe this one doesn't look so great either, from the inside. But from the outside, you can hardly tell it's been darned. 

Darning socks is basically weaving, another task I enjoyed very much back when I was taking my loom out on the regular. But it's not something you want to do while watching anything too riveting, or stress-inducing if you're the sort whose palms sweat at the sight of heights (holding up a sweaty hand here.) Too easy for the needle to slip. I need to get myself organized again with audiobooks. I'm going to run out of movies I've seen six times before (not.)

I did the first few socks with my usual blunt point darning needle and it was not exactly blissful - just better than the sharp-tipped one that splits the yarn. Then I remembered I bought darning needles on my long-ago trip to Germany and it turns out they are baby bear needles - just right. That's probably why the blue heel came out so much better.

Sometimes, you just need the right tools.

So, here we are at the end of the week, and it seems my plan worked. I've repaired many socks. There's only one pair left in the Stripey Vesper bowl, yay!

With the Stoddart wool/mohair socks to follow, ahem.

I hope you've had a lovely week and that you get some crafty time in this weekend. See you next Saturday!

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