I spend all that time making handmade socks, it seems to be a shame to toss them out when they get holes in them. I don’t wear store purchased socks anymore – so my handmade socks get a bit of a workout (and they go working out with me!)
Socks wear mostly on the toes and heels, so that’s where the holes come in. You can see in these socks that I’ve patched them a few times!
I use a number of different techniques for darning depending on what the hole is like – and if it’s actually a hole yet.
The light patches in the photo are areas where I caught it before more than one or two stitches blew out – there I used duplicate stitch, or swiss darning, to reinforce the worn stitches.
The dark blue square use a technique that I got from the Twist Collective called “Reknit and Graft” where you knit a square over the hole and attach it to the sides as you go. This is great for flat areas with larger holes, but it’s a bit fiddly.
For larger holes, I prefer to use the woven darning method. In this method (not pictured) you weave a dense square over the hole with the warp and weft tied into the sock. It’s the easiest way that I know to darn larger holes. The tutorial from Twist collective talks about using sewing thread to stabilize the hole first, but I rarely do that.
However you do it, darning is a great way to extend the life of your handmade items!