Fixing Silver Bells

About a year ago a woman purchased one of my handwoven shawls. It was a hand painted relatively heavy rayon in a colorway called Silver Bells.

In May she brought it to one of my shows asking if I could fix a hole that happened in the shawl. She had no idea what caused the hole. Nor did I, although I don’t think it was the result of either poor weaving or poor yarn, but I’ll never know. I wish I’d taken a photo of the hole before I started fixing it. Ahhhhhh, hindsight.

I came home from the show and did find a small ball of the solid silver yarn; I’d used up all the variegated yarn. I never claimed to be particularly good at needle weaving up a hole, but I did my best. I’m sure from a distance it won’t be too noticeable, despite the fact that I don’t like the way it looks.
repaired silver bells shawl

After I’d done the weaving, I wasn’t overly confident in how it would wear. After all, the yarn is fairly heavy, and there were LOTS of broken ends in both warp and weft when I received it for repair. So despite what I did with a single length of yarn to weave in the hole, I was concerned about fraying.

I spoke to my customer and told her my concerns, and that I’d heard about a product that may help if she’d like to wait till I got some and tried it. She did, so I did.

That product is Fray Check by Dritz. Interestingly, when I did my online research about it, I learned that people either love it or hate it. Doesn’t seem to be an in between with this stuff. I figured I’d give it a go.

Fray Check

I found some at Joann’s. I made myself a little cardboard frame and wove up a tiny sample just so I could test and see if the Fray Check stained the cloth. When I was about half way through this time consuming process I realized it would have been much quicker to knit up a little square, but I was too far into it by then. In any case, no stain was left on my sample, so I went ahead and used in on both sides of the shawl around the repaired spot.

Here’s a closeup, after drying. Not pretty, but no stain.

repaired silver bells, closeup

I’ve already decided that I’m not charging for this repair. And if it doesn’t keep my customer happy, I’ll make some deal with her for a replacement shawl — not free, but not full price, either. I’d much rather have a satisfied customer than a little more money. That’s how I roll.

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