Repairing a "Blankie" -- My Stash Comes Through

Friday, July 29, 2016

A dear friend came to me and asked if I would repair the "blankie" of the grandchild of a friend of hers. She said it didn't need to be anything pretty -- "just close the hole and secure everything so the blanket could be used again".

Here's a picture of the damage:

And a close up:

I knew I could do better than whip stitching everything together. The hole looked big but it mainly involved only two rows of a fairly simple crochet pattern. Most of the yarn from the damaged area was still usable for the repair but I needed just a little bit more to complete the reconstruction. When I went to my stash -- wonder of wonders -- I found I had the exact yarn used in the blanket!

Except in the small area where the new yarn was used the repair is barely detectable.

Ready to be a blankie again!

This project was a nice exercise in picking out a crochet pattern and seamlessly repairing the damage.

However, now whenever I try to pare down my stash and get rid of yarn, I will remember this project and how an off-beat color of acrylic yarn was the PERFECT match to make a stellar repair of a blankie.

I'm doomed. My stash will only continue to grow and will never decrease.

My five most used tools

Thursday, July 14, 2016

I love gadgets that help me craft with precision and get the job done right. Through the years I've accumulated a few that have been used so frequently that they've been worn out and replaced and some that are new favorites. All of them get used over and over for many types of projects. Here are my top five favorites*:

1. The seam ripper and I have had the longest relationship. When I first started sewing I used one of my dad's razor blades to rip out seams! My very first seam ripper was a pretty pink one that lasted most of my adult life but I had a horrible habit of putting it in my mouth and chewing on it while I worked. By the time it finally broke that seam ripper looked pretty disgusting. I now have two seam rippers. One that resides next to my sewing machine and another in my work basket.

2. The ruler I use is a very unique one and it replaced my standard sewing gauge ruler a long time ago. It's the Dritz Super Seam Ruler and what makes it so unique are these special features:

  • The ruler's transparency makes it easy to see what's underneath and make accurate placements; no more having to lift the ruler to double check.
  • The ruler is 1/2" wide by 1/4" thick. Next to 5/8" these are the measurements I check the most. Nowadays I can mostly measure those amounts by eye (students thought I had magical powers!) but when I need to be quick or completely accurate this makes it easy.

It took a while, but the markings wore off the first ruler and I'm now using my second.

3. "Invisible" thread is my gold. I use this thread when it's crucial to have an exact match or I don't want any stitching to show.

4 & 5. Accurate markings are often crucial to a project and my two favorite marking tools not only make it easy to mark but the markings disappear easily and cleanly. I like the chalk wheel by Clover best because with a brush of the hand it's the easiest to remove but sometimes the chalk marks wear off before I need them and for those projects I use the disappearing ink pen. Those markings fade away over a day or two or can be quickly removed with water.

Runner up:

My blocking mats are foam boards for a children's alphabet puzzle and I got them from a toy store. They work exactly the same as foam rubber mats sold exclusively as blocking mats at knitting supply sites but for about the same price you get three times the number of mats!

*I have no product affiliation with any of these items. They are just things I love to use.