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Mending, no darning a sheet

 
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Okay, the only mending I've ever done on a sheet was to retack the hem or folded over flap. Otherwise, I just let it go until it ripped and became a rag.

This morning I realized the sheet I was under had an L shaped tear and for whatever reason, lack of coffee/sense perhaps? decided to mend it. So I got 2 embroidery hoops and the sewing basket out. I carefully stitched around the sound edge around the tear and then tried to mend it. Hm. Need to use the bigger hoop, the fabric just shredded. Oh, look! A hole where there had only been a tear. What a great mending job I'm doing! Sigh...

Got the larger hoop out and darned the hole, badly. But it's darned. I have 2 reactions to this: frustration that I couldn't do a better job and wondering wtf made me think I should do it this way instead of patch it? Or, why did I even try?

I am not a happy permaculturist. When it works, I'm fine. When I F it up I think "This is ridiculous!"
 
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I can entirely relate to this! Not just in mending, but all over the homestead. Some days, I wish I hadn't gotten out of bed. But, we do it, anyway. And each and every time we see *fail*, what we DON'T see, is that someone else is thinking we are actually doing something that they'd never have dreamed of even attempting. But, now that they've seen us do it, even if it was a fail, (possibly especially if it was a fail, because that made you more human, in their eyes!) maybe they'll try their hand at mending - and someone else might see them, and try it... Both our successes and failures sometimes inspire others to try. And, as far as I'm concerned, if we F something up, it just means we need to do it again, to prove to ourselves we can.

Or, in some cases, it's just not something that was going to succeed, no matter our skill level. Was the fabric very thin, threadbare, weak, or just plain old? If the fabric itself isn't strong enough to hold together, there's little to do, to fix that. Have a cup of coffee, and pat yourself on the back, for even attempting it, before coffee! That is a feat, in and of itself!


[Note - I've edited this post several times, for auto-incorrect errors that I missed, before hitting the submit button... before coffee, lol]
 
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The projects that look simple and straight forward and then swarm on us...I feel your pain

To do with sheets though, my mother, back in the day when they were all flat sheets, would cut (not rip because sometimes the cotton was quite fragile and would rip in the wrong direction) the more worn center of the sheet down the middle and resew the outer edges (selvedges) together and that would now be the middle of the sheet, top sheet or bottom sheet they all had a seam down the middle growing up and the more fragile worn places would be on the outer rim, hemmed, of course.

Now, I find great thriftstore cotton sheets and those too worn for use are ripped up for various rags and I used them for rag rugs back when I was weaving.
 
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Big hugs to Carla for saying what she said (that's so helpful in any life area, some of which may seem beyond mending) and to you, Jennie, for comfort. 😘😘😘 Even if mending didn't work out for this particular sheet, it gave you practice, and I'm sure that during the process you've learned something that will make mending easier or better next time. From my own experience, I agree with Judith, the fabric in the centre woyld better be replaced. When you hold the sheet against a window, you can probably see the difference between center and edges, and you can also feel with your hands that about a foit wide around the edges is noticeably denser. I don't remember my grandmother replacing the centre of old sheets, but I know that she made tea towels and pouches from the good parts, often with a small touch of embroidery.
 
Jennie Little
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Carla, I have a button which reads: "I should have stood in bed." for exactly that reason!

Judith, I have heard of that technique, it was recommended in various WWII publications, here and in Britain I think?

Thank you both! For someone who nearly failed her 11th grade sewing class, broke the sewing machine we had at home and is scared to death of the one she has now... the encouragement is welcome! Also, the understandig too.

I have done applique, successfully. Why I didn't just make a patch and cover the tear with it I don't know. Lack of coffee probably.
 
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The way my mother taught me to mend sheets was with a patch like this:



After the patch is sewn on to the sheet, the sheet is turned over and she showed me to stitch the torn area.

I've have used this method for years.
 
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