I’ve been fascinated with visible mending since I first read about Tom of Holland’s Visible Mending Programme. To be honest, I have never mended or darned anything before; it seemed a boring and unpleasant task to me, and I shifted it off to my mother. There she was, trying to make repairs as invisible as possible, and inevitably failed to do so.
The idea to leave the mending process visible on purpose kind of electrified me. I was intrigued by the thought that you’d show a garment’s life as an object that had been loved and worn so many times it began to exhibit wear and tear – you’d personalise it in a way, make it yours and part of your own history for everyone to see. It seemed very beautiful to me.
This H&M cardigan has been a beloved wardrobe staple for many years. I adore its simplicity and elegance. But one day my mother, who’s like a bloodhound on the trail of a poor little fox when it comes to ferreting out holes in garments, spirited it away to one of the repair piles that have been accumulating in all corners of my parents’ house. Its fate was to never see the light of day again (seriously, you should see the size of those repairs piles), and all just because of this itty bitty hole in the left sleeve:
Honestly, I missed my cardigan. One day in the early AM I woke up and had the idea that I could put a lazy daisy stitch over the hole to close it. I don’t really know anything about embroidery, so I googled to see if the idea was feasible. Google pointed me to the blog Carissa Knits; Carissa had done pretty much this repair process on a sweater, and it looked lovely! I especially like the idea to make more lazy daisies so that a simple repair ended up upgrading the sweater to a little work of art!
I started sifting through my Grandma’s sewing box for the right thread and needles. I decided to mend the hole first with the silver thread, then stitch a lazy daisy motif over it. My mending isn’t exactly symmetric, but it looked well enough for my first time.
Then I started with the embroidery using this tutorial by Wendy Gratz on Youtube. My little flower ended up looking a bit wonky, but you got to start somewhere with everything. I’m sure it will look better with practice! I decided against making more of them, though, because I wanted to preserve the understatement that made me love that cardigan in the first place.
What do you think? I think it’s pretty cute. Also it’s really cool that the cardigan is one-of-a-kind now – nobody has one just like it!