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Decorative Darning for Mending Clothes

How to prolong the life of your knits with decorative darning inspired by Seasalt prints.


Moth holes, snags or wear-and-tear don’t need to mean parting with your favourite knitwear. In this comprehensive video tutorial, Annie Lucas from Start to Stitch shows how to master three darning and mending techniques. She also shares three floral designs for decorative embroidery to beautify your darns, based on some of our favourite Seasalt prints from our new collection.

You can download the full photo guide here, which explains each darning method in easy-to-follow steps, as well how to embroider the three floral designs below.

You will need


  • Knitwear in need of mending
  • 6 strand embroidery floss or darning wool in your choice of colours
  • Darning needle
  • Crewel needle (large eye size – 3 is ideal) or tapestry needle (large eye – 22 or 24 is ideal)
  • Darning mushroom
  • 6-7” embroidery hoop
  • Thread snips or scissors
  • Pressing cloth or tea towel 


The darning mushroom and hoop are optional, but you will find that they make this work much easier to achieve neatly, especially if you are new to embroidery

Darning Methods

Mending methods. 1. Traditional darning 2. Blanket stitch darning 3. Blanket stitch eyelet

Follow the instructions for your chosen darning method in our full guide here, or watch the video tutorial above.

Decorative Darning Stitches & Designs

Once you’ve darned your hole or worn area using one of the techniques, you can then make it look pretty with embroidery!

Here are three embroidery designs inspired by some of the artist-designed prints in our new collection. Annie explains how to create each of these designs below.

Design 1: Daisy

A combination of running stitch, daisy chain stitch and French knots are used to create this detailed design, based on our Cliffside Daisy Magpie print.

Design 2 : Pimpernel

Make a feature of your completed blanket stitch eyelet darn with this design, created using lazy daisy stitches and French knots. This motif is inspired by the richly coloured Bauble Geo print from our Autumn Winter ’22 collection.

Design 3 : Scandi-style poppy

Perfect for beautifying blanket stitch darns, this poppy design uses chain stitch, satin stitch and stem stitch. Delicate and sprightly, it’s inspired by the retro Blanket Bloom print from our Autumn Winter ’22 collection.


For more creative projects and upcycling inspiration, follow @seasaltcornwall and @starttostitch on Instagram. If you’ve enjoyed this project, why not check out our other tutorials on Seasalt Stories?

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