23 July, 2015

All the Doilies



These doilies were made by the most surprising of people. My Dad. My big, Eastern European, house building dad. He had meaty hands, ones I never would have guessed were capable of such delicate work.

I have the ones he made and gifted when he was going through chemo five years ago. And recently, while cleaning out my Mom's house in anticipation of a move, we came across a whole pile of much more delicate ones. They graced our living room furniture when that was the style, but they'd sat in a closet for years since. So we split them among the family and I have this collection.

It will be time to do something with these because I don't exactly have a doily on the sofa back kind of a style.



In the meantime, I wrote about my Dad's doilies in the latest issue of Uppercase Magazine. This particular issue has postage and lace as a theme. It truly is a pretty issue. Well, they all are! But this one feels nostalgic and cozy while still being visually invigorating.

If you have any links or suggestions on reusing/upcycling the doilies, please post and share.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

I love that! I think I would frame them and hang them in a gallery style. What a neat treasure to find. Kimberly

Anonymous said...

I've seen a lovely quilt made with doilies appliqued on a neutral background. The doilies were concentrated on one end, leaving plenty of "white space". The neutral background was more of a taupe - not white so the doilies showed up nicely. How cool that your father did them. Lois Waddell

Anonymous said...

Frame them on a black ground as art. Please, please don't cut them up.

Lauren said...

Yep, I'd applique them onto natural linen. I'm not a hand quilter but that would be a project which a Shashiko style would suit - something echoing the doilies in the white space. If you're a family that baptizes, such a quilt could be a lovely tradition for such occasions. Or sew them together into a baptismal gown. Or this woman made a lampshade that doesn't look like a toilet paper cover: http://emmmylizzzy.blogspot.de/2012/04/doily-lamp-tutorial-finally.html
I put my late grandmother's cross-stitched church clutch in a modern shadow box with a rather bold background and it looks great; alternatively, doilies would also make a nice background in a family memory box display (BW photos on transparencies throughout? Ephemeral). Anything else I can think of involves Modge Podge, cutting, or kitsch.

BJ said...

At a quilt show in FL this past spring, I saw a beautiful wedding celebration crazy quilt consisting of many blocks commemorating the couple's interests. Some of the blocks appeared to have bits of lace or cut-up doilies sewed down on background fabric, and at least one beautiful block had a collage of several doilies tacked whole onto background fabric with 2 intertwined metal rings tacked down next to them. I'm not sure of the copyright issues or I'd send the picture I took. It made an impression. Your dad did beautiful work - it would be nice to display them.

BJ said...
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BJ said...
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Sandra W said...

I agree with an earlier comment--framing is the way to go.
Perhaps your favourites, and not necessarily all of them.
They really are beautiful.
I won't cut them up or sew them into something. They will just end up wrecked.

Karen said...

Cheryl, no reason to wonder where a lot of your creativity comes from! Is this crochet, tatting? And who did he learn from? What a absolute treasure to unearth!

karen @ badlandsquilts said...

I have several of my husbands grandmothers doilies. I framed one on a rich red background for my guest room/sewing room and really love it. Years ago I had attached machine made doilies to pillows and that did not work so well with kids so I don't know that I would do that again? Looking forward to seeing what ideas you get as I have many more tucked away in a drawer.

Josie McRazie said...

I don't have a photo (because it is with one of my Moms siblings) but my grandfather also crocheted. There were several doilies and my Mom and her siblings stitched them to squares and made a quilt out of them. It was very time consuming. But the results were beeautiful!!

Anonymous said...

Make them into pillows. Stitch them to a background fabric and then make a pillow. I have made several of these lately and they make such a fun statement. I have used both solids and patterns as the background.