Have you ever done darning on a sewing machine?
I have a feeling the White can do this too, but as I was perusing the manual that came with my spanky “new” Pfaff 360 (yay, manual!) I happened on the page about machine darning.
And, well, I was feeling sewing-deprived after a week visiting home. Generally speaking, I enjoy mending about as much as alteration. Which is to say, not at all.
So on the Pfaff, at least, you don’t need to clamp your mending in an embroidery hoop. This makes it much easier to darn stuff like, say, pant legs. The darning foot is this cute little round nub, the presser-foot equivalent of a peg-leg. It isn’t as long as a regular foot, and doesn’t reach all the way to the needle plate when the foot is down. Well, it does sometimes, but it hops up and down as the needle does, pogo-sticking across the fabric.
You darn with the feed-dogs dropped, so you control speed, length, and direction of stitching by moving the fabric by hand. This means you can go back and forward and side-to-side without needing to rotate the fabric. Also a big win for fixing, say, pant-legs.
After a bit of experimenting, I dove in: loaded up the blue jeans-sewing-thread I picked up on a whim ages ago but never actually used, and pulled out some of my failing pairs of jeans.
To start, something simple: the three-corner tear my computer desk inflicted on my most recent pair of jeans a few weeks before Christmas. I threaded the jeans over the free arm, started on the back-and-forth part of the tear, and stitched up and down the length, back and forth, and then side-to-side on the vertical part of the tear.
It was startlingly easy. I don’t think these jeans will be back on the A-list, but they’re no longer stuck in bumming-around-the-house land. Win.
These skinny jeans are two years old, originally from Guess. The left knee is gone (typical) but a little more troublesome was the state of the rear yoke just below the belt-loops. This is a high-stress area, and holes had pulled where the bottom of the belt-loop attached.
Stitchy-stitchy magic! Back and forth, side to side.
I still need to topstitch down the loops themselves again, but the holes are closed—my underwears will no longer be poking out! Yay!
My final masterpiece was a frayed side-seam on a pair of white jeans Osiris scored at a thrift store back in the summer—everything about them was absolutely perfect (and unworn) except for this one strange flaw. He’s been wearing them (as you can see by the grubbiness in the photos) as is, but a repair was pretty welcome.
It’s not exactly pretty, but it’ll do, and it’s not a hole!
Just yesterday I did a bunch of darns on another of Osiris’ pants, a goth/industrial pair of black cargoes that came complete with patches and a veritable forest of studs. I didn’t photograph (black, people) but repairs included the edge of one patch where it had ripped out, several worn spots in the seat and on the front, and that weird thing on the waistband with a zipper that isn’t actually a pocket. Even bought at Winners these are some of the most expensive pants he owns (not to mention his favourite) so WIN. I find myself eyeing my children’s wardrobes to see if they need any prophylactic darning…
… yeah, I’m probably in sewing withdrawal. I should have a bit of real time later today to work on my Bird on a Wire tee…