How to Fix a Hole in a Sweater

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A sweater with several holes may be beyond repair, but a smaller hole is a quick fix.
A sweater with several holes may be beyond repair, but a smaller hole is a quick fix. (Image: Stephen Schauer/Digital Vision/Getty Images)

If you have a knit sweater that has fallen into a state of disrepair, you don't have to throw it away or toss it in a rag pile. Get out your sewing and knitting supplies and summon your fix-it skills; you can make that sweater ready to wear in no time. Whether you use a quick fix to close up the hole or employ more complicated methods of patching it up, a small hole in a sweater doesn't have to mean the end of its life.

Things You'll Need

  • Sweater
  • Embroidery needle
  • Yarn
  • Scissors
  • Knitting needles
  • Patch or pocket
  • Sewing needle
  • Thread

Stitch it Closed

Place the sweater on a table in front of you with the hole front and center. Gently pull on any loose threads to remove them from the hole.

Thread a length of yarn onto an embroidery needle. The yarn you choose should be, ideally, the same yarn used to make the sweater. If not, then try to match the color and yarn material content as closely as you can.

Bring the yarn and needle up from the inside of the sweater near the hole. Weave the needle in and out of all of the stitches around the hole, going in order from one point in the circle all the way back around to it.

Poke the needle back down inside the sweater and pull gently to close the hole. Tie a knot in the two ends of the yarn you used in the repair and then use the needle to weave those yarn ends in on the inside stitches of the sweater.

Patch the Hole

Lay the sweater out in front of you on a work table and remove any loose strands of yarn with your fingers, being careful not to unravel the sweater.

Use a knitting needle to pick up the bottom row of stitches in the hole area. Thread the needle through the stitches from left to right, with the point of the needle facing right.

Knit across the row of stitches, then gently turn the sweater with the needle still in it so you can knit or purl across the row, depending on the stitch pattern of the sweater itself. Repeat this step until you have knit a small swatch of sweater fabric that is large enough to fill the hole.

Thread the tail of the yarn onto an embroidery needle. Pass the needle back and forth between the stitches that are still loose in the sweater at the top of the hole and the stitches that are live on your knitting needle. Go back and forth across the length of the needle from left to right as you work.

Poke the needle back inside the sweater to secure the stitching. Make a small row of stitches along each side of the hole to secure the patch in its place, then weave in the loose yarn ends on the inside of the sweater.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you knit the original sweater yourself, save some of the yarn in a small bag and store it with the sweater in case you need to repair it. If you bought the sweater, save any small strands of yarn that came with it for repairs.

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