Inspired by Make Do and Mend’s post about patching clothes in the Guardian I decided to practice on a pair hand me down trousers given to R. They were a nice pair of blue corduroys but with a small rip on one of the knees and both knees were looking a bit threadbare due to the previous owner’s enthusiastic crawling.
I also thought that the decorative patching technique in the article would best suit children’s clothes.
Now R has a lot of trousers and whilst I had pulled these out for mending ages ago I never got round to fixing them because he didn’t really need them. Then I read an article on another blog about the terrible condition of some clothes donated to charity. I decided to fix them there and then because even if R barely wears them at least now I’d be happy to donate them to a charity shop in the future.
Because the knees on these trousers will always be subject to crawling wear I decided to make my patch out of a smaller circle of fleece and a larger circle of cotton fabric. I thought the extra cushioning would help with future wear and tear.
Before I started the patching process, I very quickly put a few stitches to roughly hold the torn bit of fabric together to make it more secure (even though no-one will ever see it… doubly so since I forgot to photograph that step!) Then I placed the circles wrong sides together and using a running stitch I tacked down the edges of the cotton fabric so that it enclosed the fleece.
Once I’d gone all the way round I pinned the patch over the worn place on the trousers with the right side of the cotton facing up. Then I sewed around the patch using blanket stitch to make it look prettier. I used this tutorial on blanket stitch applique which was very easy to follow.
And finally I repeated it on the other knee. Both knees were worn so it was worth it but I would probably patch both knees on another pair of trousers like this just to make it look more appealing.
It took about an hour in total – which might seem like a lot to time-poor parents. But since I spent the evening relaxing in front of the TV it was easy to fit in.