Unraveled Wednesday: Darn it!
I'm joining Kat & the Unravelers today to share what I'm knitting & mending!
Can you believe it? There's not a gnome in sight...
Just a quick pic of my current knitting:
It's a bit of a mess and I'm not in love with the color of the house @ top left, but I'm carrying on. I was knitting this pre-Covid and made some modifications of my own -- including color choices, knitting each house's sky in a different color, and adding a narrow border between each row of houses -- and ended up with two charts with scrawled, crossed-out, and scrawled again numbers... so this is a bit of a mash up! It'll be fine.
DID YOU SAY "DARN IT"?
Today's main event: my first attempts with the Katrinkles Darning Loom!
I did not take any video, but Sarah has posted a couple demonstration videos on YouTube, if you're interested: Part 1 and Part 2.
I have an old slubby cotton cardigan from J.Jill that I wear at home -- it makes up part of my "loungewear" ensemble, along with a night shirt/gown, a pair of cropped pants, socks, slippers, and sometimes a shawl. It used to be in regular daytime rotation, but it would get stretched out and not bounce back (even with heavily ribbed sleeves because... cotton), the big buttons would get caught in the cart at the grocery store and some of the buttonholes are enlarged and it doesn't always stay buttoned, and then I wore a hole in the left elbow. Somehow, it works just fine at home, though, even with flaws.
Hole at left sleeve elbow.
Katrinkles Darning Loom Kit (included, but not shown: soft elastic loop for securing, darning needle, and instructions)
I slipped the circular part inside the sleeve and positioned it so that the hole was pretty centered. The "heddle" part is put into place and it's all secured with a soft elastic band.
Then you warp your little loom! The yarn is anchored at the heddle end, brought between a set of heddle teeth and gently pulled to cover the hole, caught in the "good" fabric just beyond the hole, and brought back up to the heddle... wrap, catch & repeat as needed!
Because this was a pretty big hole, I used a double strand of leftover sock yarn for my patch. After the warp is done, you just catch the yarn in the fabric and begin to weave. It was a last-minute decision on my part to double the yarn, so I ran out and had to cut a new length part-way through. (What's another end to weave in?)
I started weaving from the bottom up, and removed the heddle when I got close. The "live" ends are woven & tacked down, and I did extra stitching and/or weaving wherever needed, using the "eyeball" method. Heh. And here's my first finished patch, front & back. Not too bad!
Admiring my work in the mirror, I noticed that there was a pretty bare spot on the right elbow -- not a hole, but almost, so I decided to fix that right away using a single strand of the same sock yarn.
This time, I began by sewing running stitch along the sides & bottom of the area I wanted to patch to define the edges -- mostly an effort to keep the edges more straight & consistent. It worked okay... it's a little better. I definitely need more practice! I'm sure that using coordinating rather than contrasting yarn would make any wonkiness less visible!
The back-side of the second patch.
Here are both patches (and the cute unicorn scissors that was also part of Kate's gift). I love them!
I have another hole to patch in the other elbow of another favorite J.Jill sweater -- it's smaller than the first one that I patched a few years ago, but too big for the Katrinkles loom. Darn. I really like that sweater for springtime, though, so I'll probably do that soon and use the ham again.
IN OTHER NEWS:
OH HAPPY DAY!! We get to officially welcome our new President and Vice President today!!
And... it's our 36th Wedding Anniversary!
What a stellar day with the Inauguration and your 36th Anniversary; wishing you and Rusty a very Happy Day! The houses aren't quite as cute as gnomes but I'm glad to see their return. Also, Happy Darning!
Posted by: Bonny | 20 January 2021 at 11:09 AM
Happy Anniversary! And Happy Inauguration Day - we can breath again! I love the way your mending looks, the contrasting yarn is perfect.
Posted by: Carole | 20 January 2021 at 12:09 PM
Posted by: kmkat | 20 January 2021 at 02:21 PM
Happy Anniversary! Happy Inauguration! I thought Biden's speech was great and I loved seeing and hearing Amanda G. read her poem - very stirring.
I'm sold on the loom. I wanted one and asked for one for Christmas...now I will just order one. Looks cool and I like the contrasting yarn as a patch. J Jill - I used to order so many clothes from them...back in the day before there were J Jill stores.
For the record, I like the peach colored house!
Posted by: Vera | 20 January 2021 at 02:30 PM
Happy Anniversary! What a stellar day to have an anniversary!! And I am in love with that little loom! Those patches!! CUTE!!
Posted by: Kat Christensen | 20 January 2021 at 04:32 PM
Happy Anniversary and Happy Inauguration Day!!!
Posted by: Nicky | 20 January 2021 at 04:58 PM
What a wonderful anniversary gift.
Posted by: Karen | 20 January 2021 at 05:29 PM
I can't imagine a better anniversary celebration!
Posted by: Sarah | 21 January 2021 at 06:48 AM
Happy Anniversary! Such neat mending. Great idea.
Posted by: Jane | 21 January 2021 at 07:22 PM
Great mending job! happy inaguration!
Posted by: Robin | 23 January 2021 at 03:28 PM
Super impressed with your darning - Wow! and also, happy much-belated anniversary and inauguration day. How wonderful to have a double celebration after the last one.
Posted by: Mary | 25 January 2021 at 11:17 AM