Well, I might have fallen in love with a new mending philosophy: Sashiko.

I foresee a long, home-bound winter ahead. In preparation, I bought a subscription to Craftsy: partly because I’ve been meaning to and partly because they had a $5 sale for the year, so I could see if I would even use it. I sought some embroidery method for mending a pair of Justin’s threadbare pants, and found Sashiko.

Sashiko stitches are patterned and stitched evenly. I can’t say this first attempt is perfect, but it really did turn out cool.

First, I used a ruler, a 2.5″ circle, and a thermal pen to draw out the pattern. Then, using 3 strands of off-white embroidery thread, I started to straight stitch the design. Immediately, I ran into a problem: what do at the end of a circle? I realized quickly that I needed to find a looping pattern, and chose the intersections of the circles to change course and loop back around. This prevented carry-over threads that could catch on an errant toe when putting on the garment.

We had some leftover corduroy from a different weekend project and cut a patch for the inside of the pant leg, then pinned it in place. Justin brought me a plastic cutting mat, and we slipped that between the back of the leg and the patch. Then I got to work.

My stitches weren’t perfect, but I was able to get fairly Buddhist about it. The entire project took only about 3 hours, and Justin absolutely loves them. Here’s the final result:

At the end of the project, I turned the leg inside out and trimmed around the inside patch for comfort. Then I ironed the stitches flat. Now we want to put these sashiko stitches on all of our clothes.


Leave a Reply