When I was hanging up laundry yesterday I happened to notice the deplorable state that Mr. G had let his socks slip into. He's only had these socks a month, but they were so foreworn that I mistook them for his old pair. Since they are wool and cost $9 a pair they are prime candidates for darning. Here is a step by step tutorial for anyone who would care to add this forgotten skill to their arsenal of frugal living tips.
Step 1: Find a forlorn pair of socks in need of some TLC and a ladle. I don't have a darning egg and the suggestion of using a lightbulb seems unwise. If you happen to get a little slap happy with the darning needle you might be tempted to say something a bit more robust than "darn it".
Step 2: Place the ladle in the sock to give yourself a good surface to work on, the fabric should not be so tight that it's stretched.
Step 3: I like to begin by taking running stitches around the rent, about a half inch out from the hole, to stabilize the tear. Not everybody does this but it makes it easier for me to keep my stitches even. Leave a 4-5" tail trailing, you will weave this in later.
Step 4: Begin sewing the warp threads using a running stitch. When you come to the rent just take a long stitch over it and continue with the running stitch on the other side.
Step 5: Now you can begin to weave the weft threads over and under the warp that you've just created. Try to make your stitches lie close to the row below. I've purposely woven loosely here to give you a better picture of what you're trying to accomplish.
Step 6: Weave in your ends, tying creates uncomfortable lumps so weaving is preferred. I darned this sock in "Northern Ireland" colors so you can see better.
The completed sock with a new lease on life! :-)