Main definitions of darn in English

: darn1darn2

darn1

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • 1 Mend (knitted material or a hole in this) by weaving yarn across the hole with a needle.

    ‘I don't expect you to darn my socks’
    • ‘However, Gates will not be darning his own socks just yet; his personal wealth fell from £53 to £37.5 billion, according to the Sunday Times.’
    • ‘I still darn my own socks, having learnt how to when I was young.’
    • ‘She darned socks each Sunday for the Uncle as it was, receiving them by mail.’
    • ‘However, he has revealed that he darns his own socks as part of a superstition that he must sport the same pair all season.’
    • ‘Often she works till 10 pm, and then returns home to darn holes in clothing for her extended family.’
    • ‘Nowadays, however, marriage afflicts everyone rather later in life, women aren't desperate to wed for economic security, and no one knows how to darn a sock.’
    • ‘Hardly any clothes were inside, except for two darned white shirts, one pair of brown pants, and two finely tailored suits, one gray, the other brown.’
    • ‘She's in her usual place at the other end of the table darning socks.’
    • ‘Over the last few days Laoise had been in the camp she had made friends with many of the men, using her spare time to darn their socks and make them meals.’
    • ‘Most people would rather darn socks than clean their home.’
    • ‘‘You darn a sock, dear,’ she said slowly and clearly, making sure he understood.’
    • ‘We microwave our dinners, movies come out on DVD mere weeks after they're released, and instead of darning a sock with a hole in it, folks simply buy a new pair.’
    • ‘It would be easier to imagine Maria Callas darning socks.’
    • ‘While Linda is in the kitchen darning stockings, he moves to the edge of the stage.’
    • ‘Aiming for the best possible results, I took an ultra-casual approach, snatching up ingredients at random while drinking a glass of wine, reading a newspaper and darning a hole in my daughter's socks.’
    • ‘Detached from our heads, hair can be used to mend garments, to darn holes in stockings.’
    • ‘At first I gave it some rudimentary household chores, such as changing gramophone needles and darning stockings.’
    • ‘Many of the gypsies ignored her, sitting outside their tents, preparing a meal or darning a sock or mending a hem.’
    • ‘In a small tin in the bottom of the pillowcase she finds needles and cotton and between sips of her tea and another pipe, she darns the holes in the hessian bag with those same deliberate tiny stitches.’
    • ‘Socks are so cheap that it would be lunacy to spend time darning them and plastic is so cheap it is almost free.’
    mend, repair, reinforce
    sew up, stitch
    cobble, botch, patch
    vamp
    clout
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Embroider (material) with a large running stitch.

noun

  • A place in a garment that has been darned.

    • ‘Clothing was rationed in just the same way as food and Mother was always altering my clothes, patching, turning collars and darning the darns on my socks.’
    • ‘And being so close to the stage I could see the darns in the showgirls' tights, so much for the glamour of Show Biz!’
    • ‘Then she unfolded her napkin as if to examine the darns, and she really thought of applying herself to this work, counting the threads in the linen.’
    • ‘Near evening in the cool blue mountains, I would sit and smoke my pipe, surveying the exquisite landscape all around, forest dotted here and there with the patches of beautiful vegetable gardens like darns in an old garment.’
    • ‘Later as a young adult she graduated to darning socks and clothing patching as an art form with patterns woven into the darns.’
    patch, repair, reinforcement, stitch, mend
    View synonyms

Origin

Early 17th century: perhaps from dialect dern to hide which is from Old English diernan; compare with Middle Dutch dernen stop holes in (a dike).

Pronunciation:

darn

/därn/

Main definitions of darn in English

: darn1darn2

darn2

(also durn)

verb, adjective, & exclamation

North american
informal
  • [as verb] ‘darn it all, Poppa’
    euphemism for damn
    [as adjective] ‘the darn things were expensive’
    • ‘Air conditioning is darned expensive but somewhat less disruptive than moving house.’
    • ‘I think we would have sold more had the weak Dollar not made them so darn expensive for the American buyers.’
    • ‘In short, network operators believe it's too darn expensive.’
    • ‘The big problem with consumer credit (or consumer debt, as it should be called) is that it's pretty darned expensive.’
    • ‘Just as well the dinner was good because it was a darned expensive shopping trip.’
    • ‘What is a lot more practical, and a darn sight more convenient, is to get a computer to simulate these immersion aspects for us.’
    • ‘You can play with controllers, but it's so much more fun with the maracas - too bad they're so darn expensive!’
    • ‘I like boots and I would have another pair if they weren't so darn expensive.’
    • ‘They reckon running a mobile phone in Nigeria is just too darned expensive.’
    • ‘Lake Conroe has a darned good predator population, what with its black, white and hybrid bass along with all those crappie and catfish.’
    • ‘And that's all thanks to what most people call the best darn thing ever; beer.’
    • ‘I mean, before you tell a tour player something about his golf swing, you'd better be darned sure you know what you're talking about.’
    • ‘Just south of Los Angeles, Elon Musk is trying to build a better rocket and to solve a problem that is dogging NASA, why is it so darned expensive to get into space?’
    • ‘I thought about going into a course, but they're are either darn expensive or way too basic.’
    • ‘Other dealers pass up promotional opportunities because they say they're too busy, and, of course, many say it is just too darned expensive.’
    • ‘But the basic problem is that the Space Shuttle is just too darned expensive and inefficient as a reliable space transportation system.’
    • ‘The fact is, Tom Fazio's architecture is extremely expensive to create, and darned expensive to maintain.’
    • ‘Meanwhile, fresh fruit in the upper Midwest is darn, darn expensive - unless you go to Eisenberg's.’
    • ‘The obvious question it doesn't ask Linux developers is, if it's so darned expensive, why are you doing this to yourselves?’
    • ‘So the Pentagon is basically telling us that the reason Stars and Stripes exists - to provide a real newspaper to troops during wartime - is just too gosh darned expensive to fund.’

Pronunciation:

darn

/därn/