Elbow patches are nice because they add structure to clothing. They visually explain what’s underneath: a bone joint that can bend and cause additional wear and tear on the material in that location. So yes, they are first practical – they’re patches. But I love them because they make the garment look loved. You don’t patch something you don’t like.
Anyway, Clara (Madrid, Spain) of Paseando Hilos – which translates to “wire walking” – has a tutorial for making some adorable crocheted heart elbow patches. She put a pair of white ones on a gray sweater, and I think they’re very cute.
[site in Spanish - Google translation here.]