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Patching Wool Products

Written by Benjamin Antoni Andersen Published on October 24, 2020 in Essentials Designer and instigator of Red Hat Factory, constantly hungry for mountainous adventures.

Red Hat Factory beanies comes with a 10 year limited guarantee. If you pay the shipping, we patch it up for free. But how does patching wool actually work, and how will the product look after patching?

The sweater below was knit in ’83, and is still in use till this day. However, that doesn’t come without some patching up.

Norwegian hand knit sweater
My dad’s sweater that’s been passed on to me.

For example, the cuffs of this sweater have been completely reknit from scratch several times, as well as the entire ridge around the waist. Like a nice pair of leather shoes needs their oil, hand knit wool needs some love, and the occasional trip to the shop.

If you have some skill in knitting or in sowing you may patch the product up yourself, but otherwise you may use your guarantee — send it to us, and we’ll fix it, then charge you only for shipping it back again to you.

How often do you need to patch it up?

This varies a lot from person to person, but for a regular beanie, it might not need a single patch in the ten years covered by the guarantee. On sweaters, I’ve personally needed about a patch every third year (per sweater), when I’ve been using one of them almost daily, out in nature, climbing, crawling and living life to the fullest. The most important thing is to patch it up as soon as it gets a tear, before it starts unravelling.

Patches look like patches (though some don’t)

Yes. There are times we won’t be able to perfectly patch it up, so like a scar, it’s going to be healed again, but the memory of the injury will be visible. This, in my opinion, is something positive. The lore of your wool product only grows. On beanies, I’d say that most tears can be mended rather seamlessly. On bigger products, like, let’s say a sweater off of Mom’s Market, might look more scarred.

Wool sweater with patch.
The patch on one of my alpaca wool sweaters’ elbow.

The coloring of different batches of yarn might differ slightly, or your product has lost color with age, so the patches may stand out somewhat color wise. (Which in my opinion is totally epic).

It think that is all you need to know to be ready to adopt a genuinely hand knit piece of apparel, and ensure a long and happy life for it.

A hand knit wool sweater is worth a patch.
Written by Benjamin Antoni Andersen Published on October 24, 2020 in Essentials Designer and instigator of Red Hat Factory, constantly hungry for mountainous adventures.

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