Mending By Needle Felting

My favourite cashmere wrap has had a hole in it for some time. When I wear it I try to arrange the folds so the hole doesn’t show, but it usually ends up front and centre. I’ve considered needle felting a little shape over the hole like these polka dots or this heart, but those ideas didn’t really suit me for this repair. I like the simplicity of the wrap and wanted something invisible. The trick was to find some fibre that matches the colour perfectly … or was it?

How to patch a hole in your knits invisibly

Grey stocking stitch fabric with a hole in the centre.

Christine O’Neill of Fantiny Felt & Fibre showed me how I could mend my hole as invisibly as possible. I didn’t even have to try to match the colour or fibre because she suggested I use the pills on my wrap. Brilliant!

Close up of fingers picking lint balls off edge of grey knitted fabric.

Hand, palm up with lint and fibres from grey knitted fabric seen, out of focus, in background.

First up, harvest some fibre from your garment. If there aren’t any pills then pinch off the loose fibres along the edges or seams of the garment. You don’t need very much.

Purl side of knitted fabric with a pile of fibres in centre and a needle felting needle lying beside it.

Centre the hole over a foam block with the wrong side showing and place the little wad of fibre on top of the hole. Start jabbing with the needle. Christine recommended that I use a fine star (40 gauge) needle and she sells them too.

Tight shot of fingers holding pink needle felting needle and out of focus grey knitted fabric in background.

Flip the fabric over and do more needle felting from the front.

Pink needle felting needle stuck in knit side of grey stocking stitch knitted fabric.

Work from the back and then the front a couple more times.

Once the hole has closed up and the wad of fibre is secure, I did a little fine tuning from the front by poking with the needle along the grooves between columns of stitches.

Grey stocking stitch knitted fabric with an area in centre where the stitches are less distinct.

My first foray into both needle felting and mending was very successful. Perhaps not completely invisible, but much less noticeable than the hole was or than a little heart would be. The little heart is very sweet though so I’m sure I can find the perfect garment for it.