I know it sounds weird but hear me out.
Janine, one of the occupational therapy assistants at work, asked me a few weeks ago if I could repair a blanket that she received as a wedding gift from a random woman she didn't know (I know how cool those random stranger gifts can be, probably from a friend of an older family member). I said sure, I'd give it a crack. Janine brought it with her to show me it's condition.
|Before being repaired.|
|Before being repaired.|
|An intact section of the blanket.|
The blanket really wasn't in horrible shape. It actually looked very well loved and used. She said her kids liked using it and she didn't want to give up on the idea that it could be saved. I really was looking forward to this project. When I told Janine that, she looked at me like I had three heads or something. :)
The inside of the butterflies' wings were where they were ripping out. That yarn was much finer and thinner than the black or cream in the blanket.
Janine went out and got some yarn, Sugar 'n Cream 100% cotton yarn, that definitely will hold up but doesn't quite match the other wing yarns. The Sugar 'n Cream yarn is thicker and a little rougher. She said she didn't care about the matching: she didn't want to put a lot of money into it (if it couldn't be repaired, she was going to just put it away) and since the wings are multi-colored, she figured it would still look okay.
Anyway, I set to it last night. There were really only five butterflies that needed repairs. One square at a time, I cut out all the old ripped up yarns. Then, I started on the point furthest inside each wing and worked my way out, doing a series of DC and chains. If the tears were deep enough, I had to do 1 row each of 2 different colors. (I thought I was going to need a pattern to help me recreate the look, but I couldn't find one. Once Janine brought me the blanket, I realized it was mostly intact and I didn't need a pattern because the solid squares were in good enough shape to "read.")
The only time I had to do some frogging was when I was trying to fix the black outlines on the wings. Anyway I attached them to the inside colored parts, it created kind of a ridge of yarn on top of the square and I didn't like the way that looked. So I threaded a yarn needle with the black Sugar 'n Cream yarn and basically sewed the two sections together. Even with the cutting out of the broken yarns, the black DC's remained intact, so I threaded the new yarn through the end loops and down through the chains I created in the repaired sections.
I finished the repairs last night but I didn't bother to take any after photos of it. It's going back to Janine tomorrow.
This project actually went well enough, that I'm thinking about putting an ad on CL for crochet repair!