Tag Archives: mending knits

Darn it! Hook it? Mend it!

My sister asked if it’s possible to mend a hole in a shawl. Well, anything is possible, but I hadn’t done that before.

It looked like it was just one stitch, so I thought I could just duplicate stitch over it. Unfortunately, a closer look revealed that the edge stitches were also frayed, so I’d have to make a patch about 4 stitches wide by 3 stitches high to attach it to stable fabric.

I didn’t have the exact same yarn any more, but this red was pretty close. The back isn’t nearly as pretty, but it’s the back! You can definitely see the frayed hole on the back side, plus the patch covering the front.

I ran yarn back and forth across the hole, leaving a loop twice as long on the left edge as the yarn covering the hole, each time I passed there. Then I used that yarn and hooked up a column from an existing stitch below the hole, beginning with the stitch on the furthest right. At the top of the column, graft to the existing stitch above using the yarn that’s still in the yarn needle. Then hook up the next column and do the same. Lather rinse repeat until the hole is covered. Hooking up uses up the extra loops that were on the left.

It’s similar to the patch I knit over this hole (blog post here) but it’s hooked up instead of knitted back and forth (and also much smaller than that blown out heel). It’s tidier because instead of using k2tog and ssk at the sides of the patch to attach it to the fabric, which creates bulk, the yarn is just put into position to be hooked up, so it lies flatter at the bottom and sides of the patch. The only place it’s bulky is at the top of the patch, where it’s grafted to the existing fabric. I couldn’t get it flat. But it’s still better than a hole that’s going to get bigger!

I decided to re-block it, because blocking is magic, and it had been a while. And that’s when I discovered…

another hole. This one happened right next to an eyelet, which means the same kind of fix wouldn’t be appropriate here.

I played with it a little. I think I can work with these two ends, bringing them to the back and tying them off. The edges here aren’t frayed, so it should be pretty secure. I’ll see what happens after it’s dry; I can’t do anything yet.

Whew! That was a lot of words to describe the fix. Should I make a video tutorial?

Do you mend your knits? I always mean to, and drop them on the mending pile, but it’s not a high priority for me. You?