My Darned Socks





Introduction: My Darned Socks

Lately I have been wearing "church socks", that is, they are holy….full of holes, and not just the one big one on to that fits around my ankle.

So, I decided to DARN a few of them, and thought I should share with some of you who have never done this. Simply darning your socks will fill in the worn and torn places and let you keep wearing them. I know, socks don't cost much, but these days every penny counts.

It's easy really, and you'll have a sense of accomplishment when you are done.

Step 1:

First, for beginners, choose your sock with the smallest hole. Get a plain lightbulb even if you need to borrow it out of a fixture, like a desk lamp. Then, push the bulb into the sock, to give support and slightly stretch the damaged area of the fabric. I'm using plain cotton "kite string" here and a rather large needle. We used to buy "darning cotton" at the Dime Store, but those days are gone. For men's work socks, kite string works well. Some embroidery cotton will work. Plain sewing thread on the spools does not work well. In a pinch, use a couple of threads separated out of the kitchen string you use to tie up a roast…but new and clean is best.

Step 2:

First, sew the longest way over the hole. Just closely spaced parallel lines are the best, until the whole hole is fairly well covered with string or cotton.

Step 3:

Then, turn the work and WEAVE your cotton string up and down, over and under across the hole. Turn at the end and come back, alternating each crossing. So, if you went under a certain string the first time, then go over it this time. What you are doing essentially, is creating a woven fabric in the hole. Continue until the missing space, the old hole, has been filled with lines of cotton or string going back and forth, and up and down.

Step 4:

When you have lots of lines, at about 90-degrees to one another, then you may choose to fill in a little more with a series of diagonals. For these start at a corner and continue to weave over and under the newly stitched lines of the work. Turn at the ends and come back, next to and parallel to your previous line. Usually , these three layers of new cotton are sufficient and will extend the life of the sock several times.

Step 5:

Here are two views of the sock I was working on here. No, it's not beautiful, but it's better than a hole. It looks bulky but will settle in with just a little wearing. Now, take the money that new socks would have cost you and put it in your cookie jar for a rainy day.

Step 6:



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    Looks like my holey socks will now get darned and I will not have to worry about saving money for new ones. Thank you for your great post!

    I love seeing this almost as much as I hate seeing how fast socks wear out. Thanks for sharing!

    Everytime I darned my socks I'd remember President Reagen saying: "Pass the buck".

    Embroidery floss works as well as the original darning cotton, and it comes in many colors. You can use all six strands or any portion to match the sock. My dad darned his socks, and so did my father in law.

    That was a darn nice job...

    A suggestion, before you start sewing across the hole, sew around it with running stitches, making a ring slightly larger than the hole. Pull gently to restore the shape of the sock in the area of the hole, which will also reduce the area you have to fill in with the darning stitches.

    1 reply

    Correct, i should have done it that way but really wanted to get this sock done and set people on the course to doing a bit of repair. My mother, rest her soul, did just as you suggested, and she could fill a hole with nary a stitch out of place. Thanks for adding to the knowledge base here. Piper

    Good morning Jason! Yes, almost any "repair skill" is worthwhile. Too often in the modern world we simply discard. Everything from socks to televisions are dumped when they don't work, with little regard for repair, revision or re-use. That is part of why INSTRUCTABLES is so important.