Yesterday I realized that I had gone to work wearing a sweater with a tear in the shoulder seam. I was completely embarrassed because this wasn't a subtle rip, and it very clearly showed my skin (God forbid :) ). This year I have been trying extra hard to have a neat appearance, so an obvious tear in a black sweater is unacceptable.
While I've owned this sweater for nearly ten years, it still should have another ten to go. A quick mend would do the trick, especially since it's black, and it will be good as new. As I was sewing it up this morning, I wondered how many of us actually take the time to mend clothing anymore. Mending piles were one of the most common things seen in households 50 or so years ago, but now they are rare to find. Whether it be lack of time to do the mending, or lack of knowledge (or both), this seems to have become one of many lost arts. But the amount of resources it saves is wonderful. Instead of throwing out an article of clothing that has become damaged and purchasing a new one, mend the tear, rip or hole and the item will be perfectly fine.
Here are some resources I have found helpful to learn how to repair all kinds of damage to clothes.
I have referenced this book in the past, but would like to give it another plug. The information given on mending of all kinds is quick, to the point and very useful, with pictures to aid in the process.
Craftzine.com had an entire mending month, which offered a variety of articles on how to repair all sorts of things, even how to get certain stains out.
TLC Home has an article about repairing clothes, resoling shoes and fixing a broken zipper, among other things. Such a useful tool!
Now I'd love to hear from you! How often do you bring out the needle and thread to patch up a worn piece of clothing? Or do you just toss it?