Dressing Up Doilies

Jennifer Heslop shows us fun ideas for your grandmas doilies.


Clean doilies in warm water, using a mild detergent. You can give the doilies a vintage look by dying them in a mixture of hot water and natural tea. Place doily in a bowl and cover with hot water. Add 3 or 4 tea bags. Allow doily to soak until desired color is reached. Doilies can also be dyed using fabric dye (just follow the directions on the dye packaging).


Vintage bracelet: cover an inexpensive plastic bracelet with a piece of lace or section of doily. Stretch lace around bracelet and secure on the inside using hot glue.

Embellish a vase or bowl: make a collar for a vase or bowl by sewing several doilies end-to-end. Slip the ring around the bowl.

Shirt: embellish a plain t-shirt by hand-stitching on a doily.

Pretty wire hanger: a lace covered hanger makes a heart-felt gift. Use it to display baby gowns or hang jewelry. Lay hanger on flat surface and stick the hanger’s neck through the doily. Pull the excess towards the bottom of the hanger. Trim off excess and hand-stitch along the bottom edge.

Head-band: left-over pieces of trim or lace make a pretty headband. Simply hot glue lace to a plain plastic headband.

Doily bowl: to create a one-of-a kind bowl, completely wet doily with liquid starch. Create mold by flipping a bowl upside-down and covering the bowl with plastic wrap. Lay doily over bowl and allow to dry for 1-3 days.

Tye-dyed purse: Purchase cotton doilies and tye dye using fabric dyes (i.e. Rit).
To create purse, purchase a canvas tote and machine stitch doilies to both sides.

Pillow: Simply hand-stitch an heirloom doily to a pillow. Excellent idea for a wedding “ring pillow.”

Lamp Shade: Strip an old lamp shade down to the wire frame. Using pieces of lace and various doilies, pin doilies around frame, creating a skirt. Once frame is covered, hand-stitch all pieces together. Stitch skirt in place, by sewing around top edge.

Doily runner– Create a lacey polka-a-dot runner by stitching various doilies together.

Studio 5 Contributor Jennifer Heslop loves turning trash into treasure. She is handy with a hammer, and has a knack for saving a dime by doing it yourself!

If you have questions for Jenn, e-mail her at studio5@ksl.com.

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