What Is Wrong With Darning One's Socks?

I have a confession to make.

I darn my socks.

I do not, as is more socially acceptable, throw them out when I get a new pair.

My mum doesn't understand why I bother. Neither does Camilla Morton. I can't remember exactly which book of hers I was flicking through in the bookshop a couple of weeks ago but it was either A Girl for All Seasons (please read the lone review on Amazon.co.uk and tell me whether it is a joke or serious, I am unable to tell) or How to Walk in High Heels. I turned to a section about repairing clothes. She explained how to replace a button, but under the heading for darning socks, wrote dismissively that no one darns socks any more.

At that point I closed the book and put it back on the shelf, rolling my eyes.

I darn my socks.

The fact that I can get five pairs of new socks for £3 at Marks and Spencer means nothing to me.

I like my socks. From the short socks in a multitude of shades of purple, to the knee high and beyond in various versions of stripes. I have a modest collection (I mostly wear tights) but one of which I am proud. I don't want to throw away my pale blue, cream, and silver metallic striped socks just because they get one tiny, pathetic, hole. No! I want to make that hole history with some thread in the right colour, and carry on wearing them.

I also like the planet. I don't want to waste resources just so I never have to dent my thumb on the eye of a needle. I haven't thrown away a sock for years. Some have gone through multiple darnings in different colours (in emergencies, any thread will do), and have joined the retirement collection of socks for emergencies when all others are in the wash. Will I ever throw them away?They can always be used for cleaning, like any scrap fabric, or I can send them off to be made into Stupid Creatures. Eventually I hope to knit my own socks, and those will never be entering a bin!

Why has it become such a social crime to darn one's socks? Surely in this age when it's oh-so-fashionable to be, or at least to pretend to be, environmentally conscious, the real faux-pas is failing to do so?

And who could ever throw socks as lovely as these away? Holes or no holes!


  1. Me too! Especially my cool stripy ones!

  2. If my socks were as funky as yours, I would, perhaps, take up darning. Alas, all my socks are black, and are more likely to lose their elasticity than get a hole. I admire your reluctance to reject and replace!

  3. icy - Yay! I am not alone!

    amypalko - All my socks used to be black or plain pastel colours. All my underwear used to be plain black as well. One day it got too much and I started exploring colours!


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