You loved these socks on Instagram, so I figured it would be nice to permalink them here.
As someone who loves colour, discovering variegated yarn for darning was a total game changer.
I was able to darn these socks (with my Swift Darning Loom of course) using two continuous lengths of yarn! Totally minimizing the ends I needed to weave in.
As you can see, the plaid pattern is slightly different on each sock. I mended these for a customer who provided a small amount of yarn for the darns. If I had more yarn and wanted the socks to match, I could have started each repair at the same point in the repeating pattern dyed into the yarn.
Instead, there's definite continuity across each patch, but they don't match exactly! And I'm okay with that. I'm a person who needs a little bit of randomness and asymmetry. But it would be fun to try making a matching pair of patches, or a mirrored pair (by using identical yarn but warping one from right to left and the other from left to right).
Bonus: BEFORE! Only one of these socks was worn completely through, but I decided to patch the same area on each.\
Careful with this strategy, though: sometimes, patching too big (or too stiff, or too thick) can lead to an uncomfortable darn. But usually after a few wears, and especially when wearing shoes, I don't feel my darned socks at all.
I'm looking forward to experimenting more with this hand-dyed variegated style of yarn! And if you're looking to buy some for yourself, I'd recommend finding a local indie dyer. These delightful magical creatures are found all over the world - knitters guilds and yarn shows are a great place to start looking (or search "yarn show vendors + your city/major city near you" to get inspired). Pro tip: mini skeins are perfect for darning!