I've been knitting socks for quite a while. I love them because they're a relatively quick project, easily portable and, most importantly, I have cold feet. Nice warm wooly socks keep those toes so much more comfortable than any cotton, nylon or acrylic can. The spouse claims to enjoy wearing them too, so I keep him well supplied.
Now normally I would just snip that offending hole right off the sock, pick up the live stitches and knit a new toe. This time, however, I'm up against the problem of having no more yarn to do so. I hate to see a good sock go bad, so let's try a little needle felting.
I had a felting needle I bought at MD Sheep & Wool a few years back (and never used), some leftover high density foam from a home dec. project, and some fiber -- seems like a good solution to me. Now, unfortunately, I tend to like to spin natural colored fiber, so I didn't have a good match for those black socks. I went with some Jacob (the dark colored bits), figuring a brown-ish toe was better than an unwearable sock. If I'd had some black yarn, I might have tried that -- but no luck there, either.
OK, I've never tried needle felting before, but why let that stop me. So I turned the sock inside out, stuffed the toe with the foam, layered on a thin bit of fiber, and started punching the needle up and down. By golly, it forms a nice, cushioned mat right over that hole.
Just for good measure, I turned the sock right side out, re-inserted the foam inside the toe, and punched away on that side too. (You know, this is almost as good for releasing pent up energy as kneading bread.) When I was done, I had a nice, thin layer of felt patching the hole in the toe of the sock. I spread the felting out over most of the toe -- an ounce of prevention...And here's the outside of the sock, post felting --
You can see a 'beard' of the lighter colored fiber against the black of the sock. So, not as elegant a solution as using same colored fiber, but it closed up the hole, reinforces the toe area and keeps the socks in circulation -- not too bad, eh? He'll just have to remember that these aren't the socks to wear when going through airport security!