Rule

(Catching ascending and descending loops. Fig. 32.) Carefully investigate the material to find the character of the threads, as the new threads must resemble those of the stockinet. Fine darning cotton doubled is more satisfactory than coarse darning cotton. It is better to work on the wrong side of the stockinet. The position is over the first two fingers of the left hand or the stockinet may be basted to a card. Egg-shaped and other darners are apt to stretch the stockinet and the darn does not lie flat. The hole must first be neatly cleared of loose ends and made as regular in outline as possible. If it is very large, strands of thread may be thrown across the hole to keep it in shape, or a thread may be inserted around the edge of the hole catching each loop and closing it without puckering it. (These threads are to be cut out when the darn is completed.)

On the wrong side of the stockinet one row of the loops of the knitting turns up and the next turns down. (Fig. 32.) Thin parts of the stockinet beyond the hole must be covered by a running darn. The material must not be made any heavier than it was originally. Begin at the lower right-hand side of the hole. The ends of the darn should be diamond-shaped or wavy (Fig. 32), so the strain will not be along one line of loops. Beginners may stretch a thread in diamond shape about the hole and darn inside of that. The longest part of the diamond will be above and below the center of the hole. Insert the needle in the loops that turn upward taking every other one in coarse knitting and every third or fourth in fine. On returning take the loops that turn downward, alternating the stitch with the preceding line. All the warp threads are woven in first. The darning threads must pass through the loops on the edge of the hole; if they are not caught the darn will not be strong. Insert the woof threads when the warp threads are all in. Begin at the top of the darn as far from the hole as is needed to strengthen the material. Lay the woof threads close enough together to make the woven part over the hole as strong as the original texture. The point of the needle may serve to lay the threads into a close web as the batten does in the loom. In weaving in the woof threads in a very large darn, it is well to begin in the middle instead of at one end, as the hole is more apt to keep its correct shape. Loops must be left in the darning cotton as the thread turns back in both warp and woof so as to allow for the stretching of the stockinet and the shrinking in washing. The darn should lie perfectly flat.

Practice

Take a piece of coarse stockinet, 4x4 inches. Cut a few threads in the center of the web and the broken ladders can then be stretched into a hole. Repair according to the rule, catching the loops and making a diamond-shaped darn. As the material is new the darn does not need to extend far beyond the hole.