How to darn; the art of darning

Darning is suitable for mending small holes or frayed areas. If skillfully done, it can be nearly invisible.

Use a wooden darning egg for a sock or other knitted fabric or a sleeve; an embroidery hoop for a flat piece of woven fabric. Don’t overstretch or distort the area to be darned. If a hole is large, baste a patch of net or sheer fabric to the wrong side as a base.

Darn under good light and with a fine needle. If possible use a thread from an inside seam or fabric scrap. Otherwise, choose a thread as nearly like the fabric thread as possible.

Working on the right side, take a tiny backstitch near the edge of the hole to anchor the thread (don’t knot it). To reinforce frayed edges, make small running stitches around the hole. Fill the hole with side-by-side stitches running parallel to the fabric yarn. Then weave across these stitches at right angles. Keep the stitch tension even and not too tight; pulling the stitches taut can cause puckering.