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Picture of Caterwauller
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OK - I was knitting with a Chinese friend yesterday and (apparently) teaching her all kinds of new words and phrases. We had a long conversation about darning.

Do you think of this as an old-fashioned word? Do you darn anything other than socks? Maybe some other knitted/crocheted items? How often do you use the word?

Bu-Ying's Chinese/English dictionary translated the word "darn" into a Chinese word that is both verb and noun, so that you would darn the socks and end up with a darn (a patch?). Has Darn ever been a noun for us in English?


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"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
~Dalai Lama
 
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Does anyone still use it this way today? As a noun?


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"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
~Dalai Lama
 
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<Asa Lovejoy>
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I don't use it, but have heard it. Socks disappear too rapidly to be darned around here - and always just one of them goes AWOL at a time. Frown
 
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My grandmother had a darning egg in her sewing bag, and darned socks routinely. However, it was hard to hide a darn in the factory-made socks that started showing up in the '60's. Fortunately they were cheap. Knowledge of darning technique paid off in once instance: those dyed-to-match socks worn with sweater and wool bermudas or kilts.

My mother taught me darning primarily as a means to fix a mothhole or small tear in a garment, and it still comes in handy.
 
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a) darn ..... 织补 .....

b) Mother darns the socks 母亲织补袜 ............

c) this sock has a darn in it .....这只袜子有一个织补在它.....

Edited ... emphasis added. ... or so the "editor" thought.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: jerry thomas,
 
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a darning egg

A friend gave me a nice wooden one of these years ago. It was in his grandparents estate, and he had no idea what it was. My grandmother always just used a light bulb.


Ceci n'est pas un seing.
 
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My grandmother always just used a light bulb.

That's a modern technique that she's found.
A light bulb's just right -- hard and round.
When my Grandma darned sox
From her sewing box
There weren't any light bulbs around.


How many Edisons does it take to screw in a light bulb ........ laboratory ..... ???
 
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Picture of Kalleh
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Yes, my grandmother had one of those darning eggs, too, but she called it something else. Does it have another name? Now I wonder where it is because, like z says, it was a nice wooden one.
 
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The darning devices I have seen are shaped more like a mushroom.


Richard English
 
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I found some great ones on eBay. I could swear my grandmother called it something else, but I couldn't find another name for it. I will ask my dad.
 
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My mother, my mother-in-law, my aunts and I all had or have darning eggs. I've never seen a mushroom shaped one, and have never heard them called anything but darning eggs. My sister and I were taught how to darn a hole in a sock, and you would darn the sock rather than replace it. That was in the '50s and '60s. When I got married and started a little mending pile, my husband found me mending one of his socks and said, "Oh, heck--just throw it away!" I was really surprised, but eventually gave in to this spendthrift notion. I do still darn some of my own socks, especially woolly ones that are really comfortable, and I have mended holes in sweaters, etc., as Bethree describes.

Wonder if the younger generation learns this at all anymore.

Wordmatic
 
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No one ever taught me how to darn things. I know my grandmother darned socks, and she had a darning basket next to her favorite chair in their Family Room. My mother must know how to darn, but she never taught me.

My good friend, Scott, whom some of you met in Chicago, knows how to darn, and I know he has darned his socks - he's very frugal. We've had discussions about darning.

Now that I'm knitting all the time, I'm thinking I should get one of those eggs (or the mushroom things) and learn to darn.

Someday I'll figure out how to use Ebay, too.


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"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
~Dalai Lama
 
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<Asa Lovejoy>
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quote:
Originally posted by wordmatic:


Wonder if the younger generation learns this at all anymore.

Wordmatic

Mostly "darn" is now a euphamism for "damn," and not a means or fixing holy socks. I wish I knew how, since I go through the heels of me socks long before the rest is worn out.
 
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Someday I'll figure out how to use Ebay, too.
Me, too. My kids use it all the time, along with Craig's List. My youngest daughter bought a ring on eBay...for $1! I thought, what is the point of even sending it? I suspect some people use eBay just for the fun of it.
 
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Wonder if the younger generation learns this at all anymore.
Wordmatic


Well, they certainly won't have any trouble finding out how nowadays!
 
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Some people even darn shoes.
 
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When I was at primary school (I don't know what it's called in the USA, but it's for children from 5 to 11) I was told I had to play football. Well, I tried it a couple of times and it was cold, boring and vicious. So I told my teacher that I didn't want to play football ever again and she said, "Well, if you don't want to play football then you can sit with the girls!"

So I said, "That's fine" and that's just what I did. Whilst the other boys were running about getting cold, wet and muddy, my friend Christopher Wright and I sat with the girls and we learnt to knit, sew, darn and embroider - all in the warm and dry.

And, let me say, the ability to darn my own socks, and sew on my own buttons, has been far more useful to me than the ability of kick some rotten football around some muddy field!


Richard English
 
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And, let me say, the ability to darn my own socks, and sew on my own buttons, has been far more useful to me than the ability of kick some rotten football around some muddy field!

I imagine it made you more marketable as a potential spouse, too!


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"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
~Dalai Lama
 
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Margaret's very good at that sort of thing - so I have rather let the skills lapse. But I can still do it if I need to.


Richard English
 
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when I was in school (7th, 8th, or 9th grade, I forget which one), boys were required to take shop class and girls home ec. (home economics) class. I always thought that boys should have been required to take home ec., too. After all, skills such as cooking and sewing would benefit boys (and men), at least until they got married. Then their wives could do all the "women's work." Until the divorce.
 
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