How to Mend and Darn Clothing, World War II-Style!

by , 04/03/12   filed under: Fashion Artifacts, Featured

DIY fashion, DIY projects, DIY tutorials, eco-fashion, ethical fashion, fashion artifacts, green fashion, Make Do and Mend, Mrs. Sew and Sew, Sustainable Fashion, sustainable style, World War II

MRS. SEW AND SEW SAYS

On darning holes and tears
Do not wait for holes to develop. It is better to darn as soon as garments begin to wear thin. Imitate, as well as possible, the texture of the fabric being darned. When darning a big hole, tack a piece of net at the back and darn across it, and this will give an extra support for the stitches. A tear should be tacked around onto a piece of paper, to hold the edges in position.

On patching coats
Patching material for an overall may be cut from the lining of yoke, belt, pocket, cuffs, or collar. The sleeves and hem could be shortened. If you are patching patterned material, always match design perfectly and hem very neatly and the result will be almost invisible. Contrasting clothing can be used to replace a part that is cut away, and pieces of the overall can be put by for future patching.

On patching elbows and trousers
It is easy to mend the elbow o a two-seam sleeve, as the worn part can be cut away and all that will be seen is the seam at the top of the new section. Do not use new material, as it will be of a much heavier texture than the worn garment. Cut the best parts of old garments and keep them by you for future patching. New coats and knickers can be strengthened before wearing by patching neatly on the wrong side.

On darning holes
DO darn on the wrong side directly after a thin place appears.
- tack a piece of net on a large hole and darn across it for extra strength.
- darn well beyond the weak place.
- leave loops at the turns to allow for shrinking.
- settle yourself comfortably in a good light before you start.

DON’T wait for a hole to develop.
- make straight edges to your darns; a little irregularity distributes the strain.
- pull the thread taut or it will pucker.
- expect to make a success of a job by hit-or-miss methods.

On repairing torn buttonholes
Usually it is the outer edges of buttonholes that ‘go.’ To tidy and strengthen them, stitch a length of tape or a narrow band of matching material along the edge of the garment. Then redo the buttonholing over the new material.

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