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Thornton Hall

The Revolution Will Be Kuhnian.

Repair My Wool Shirts

I have a 100% Pendleton shirt that belonged to my grandfather. I claim it is 50 years old, and maybe it is. This kind of shirt is making a comeback with outdoors types and the people who like to look like outdoors types, but I think there was a large gap, from the 70s to the 90s, where synthetics were seen as an improvement on wool. So it seems unlikely to have been from the end of his life in the 90s, especially given it’s very slim fit.

But my beloved shirt, which I have had since 1993, has a tear in the elbow. 

I have another wool shirt from Banana Republic in the late 90s or early 00s. That shirt has some moth holes. 

What to do? 

The message boards suggest darning. Apparently that is more involved than pulling the two sides together in a pucker. Here’s a Guardian article about it which says: 

1) Place your darning mushroom (or equivalent – you can use anything with a rounded side – something like a teacup would do the job) under the hole.

2) If it is quite a big hole that you are darning, sew a circle of running stitch about half a centimetre away from the edge of your hole to prevent the hole from stretching and getting worse while you are mending it.

3) Secure your thread by sewing two to three stitches on top of each other, in an undamaged part of fabric close to the hole.

4) Sew horizontal stitches across the hole starting and ending close to, but on the hole side of, your circle of running stitches.

5) Then weave a series of stitches perpendicular to your horizontal stitches, working the thread over and under your stitches.

6) Make sure that you leave a long end on the thread when you are finished so that you can weave it into the repair, rather than securing it with a knot


I’m not sure I get what the mushroom thing is doing. Hmmm....


Make Do And Mend:


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