A Few Mends of Mine

With ‘MEND’ as our theme, I thought I would share some of my mending with you. I have enjoyed the process of mending things far more since a few years ago I heard about ‘visible mending’. My friend showed me a mend on her woollen winter coat. The coat was red, the mend was green! I thought it was brilliant. Prior to this, if I had ever attempted to fix clothing, I always tried to mend it invisibly, just as I had been taught at school, and I think at Brownies and Guides too. All rather tedious!

The first mend I am going to share is a rather large one. I went to visit my son and daughter-in-law when they had recently moved into a new flat. They had bought some furniture; one piece was a chair from Ikea which happened to be the same as one I also had. Just before we had arrived, a candle had accidentally been knocked over and the wax had spilled onto the new chair. Aaaaaaaaggggghhhhh!! ‘Don’t worry’ said I, ‘I know how to solve that problem’. I thought by using kitchen towel and a hot iron we would be able to soak up the wax. Not so as there was just too much wax and the stains were still very visible. This was very upsetting indeed. However, I looked at the wax splatters and decided I could sort it another way by making the most of the stains. I said I would swap my chair cushion for theirs and so the waxy chair would be back to its former self.

The largest of the wax stains was in the shape of a leaf.

So I stitched a leaf!

I covered another large stain that spread over the edge with an even larger area of weaving.

Using different colours for the warp (up and down stitches) and the weft (weaving left to right), I achieved some interesting effects.

As you can also see I stitched several of these ‘wrapped spider webs’ which perfectly covered the smaller wax blobs along with other embroidery stitches. To be honest, I got a bit carried away adding a few more webs and there was no wax on the front of the cushion, but that didn’t stop me!

I am very pleased with the finished chair.

Now for something a bit more usual, a few repairs on a skirt.

I wandered into a shop you would have heard of where there was a sale, and amongst it all I found a pile of denim skirts that were VERY distressed. They caught my eye because the price was £2.99 and I like a bargain. I went and tried one on. It fitted, probably not a style designed for someone in their 50s, but I don’t let things like that bother me and I had a plan. I was going to visibly mend it. Here it is:

I have mostly darned it, which is a sort of weaving, but as you can see here, I have stitched it further out than the hole and there are a few cross stitches and even some French knots and I plaited the left over thread.

But I covered one area with a ‘boro style’ of mending, which is a Japanese technique and is a sort of patchwork. It is patches with lots of running stitches holding it down.

One more! I think a moth had a snack out of the front of a sweater I wear a lot which was very annoying to say the least. I could have easily darned it with black wool, the hole was small and it wouldn’t have shown up at all. Don’t be silly! I darned a large area in three colours. When it was done I tried it on and admired myself in the mirror to see how it looked. The rectangular shape looked sort of like a mug. So:

Much more interesting!!

So maybe you might like to try your hand at some visible mending. There is a great video on You Tube by Claudia Naen called ‘Sashiko and Patches’ which I really enjoyed and there are so many more if you search for ‘darning’ or ‘visible mending’.

For embroidery stitches like the woven spider web or French Knots and many, many more, I really like Mary Corbett on You Tube

I hope you have been inspired.

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