Reader Question: Doily Chic……

This weekend I received this email from Beth after she read my latest post over at Centsational Girl ……..

I’ve seen your post on Centsational Girl about how to make antique furniture blend with other, more contemporary pieces in the home. I have something sort of related to this. My grandmother crocheted a long white table runner. It’s really REALLY not my style. And last year, my now departed beloved mother-in-law gave me and my husband a huge handmade crocheted tablecloth made by her great-grandmother. My husband loves using these things, as we should, but I have no idea how to fit them into our home. I usually only put them out around the holidays, but even then nothing seems to work….

Beth – I hear you loud and clear!  Decorating with family heirlooms can be a difficult and frustrating experience of trying to shoehorn someone else’s design aesthetic into your home.  This can’t be any more true than with crocheted or lace tablecloths and doilies.  If there was any singular genre of home furnishing that screams “Granny Chic” it is a lace or crocheted doily.

I am going to be honest … I don’t like them and even convinced my own grandparents to get rid of them.  But I am not suggesting that you toss your prized possessions in the trash.  On the contrary I challenge you to consider using them in non-traditional ways in her home.  I would suggest considering using one of these treatments to turn your Grandmother and MIL’s pieces into updated classics befitting your modern style ……

Create an everyday item out of the pieces like a vase or bowl.  The doilies will have a new life and be put to good use on a daily basis….

Shine a little light on the topic matter by transforming your doilies into a chic pendant lamp or lamp shade…..

Snuggle up to the idea of using the doilies as appliques on pillows or curtains…

Display the pieces in all their glory by using them as wall hangings or having them framed in a shadow box….

Or if you wanted to keep them as table coverings, I would suggest paring the doilies with milk glass or cut glass goblets to offset their sweetness.

However, I think the surest way to revamp doilies and crocheted items is to give them a bath — a color bath that is!  Dye them to match your decor and you instantly drop the “Granny” and simply have hip…..

Hope this has helped Beth!

But I am curious, have any of you found a cool way to incorporate crocheted and lace items into your home decor?  Leave a comment and help Beth out!

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6 thoughts on “Reader Question: Doily Chic……

  1. I love your ideas~ There are some hand done items that you wouldn’t want to take apart and ruin the hard work that went with it. But I love the look of most of them. There is a way to incorporate them without looking “granny-ish”. I have folded some of mine in half and made them into a banner, draped across an entryway, beautiful at Christmas time. But I love shabby chic as well so that probably has a lot to do with it,🙂
    Dip one in glue and lay it over an inverted bowl. let it set. Pop it out when it’s hard and it becomes a bowl. Fill it with silk roses,Christmas cards, wrapped candies, for the holidays….there’s so much you can do! Love reading your FB page, thanks so much!

  2. Brilliant, loving this. Did I mention brilliant?

    Got any ideas what to do with a VERY traditional (almost gaudy) poo brown rocking chair that was once owned by my very dear husband’s grandma?

    Sighs…. I married a hunter. In southwestern PA. He has dead deer heads. Three. Now, I know that good design is to go in three’s but omg, the only thing they do now is sit in the basement doing their best to point-stab their way out of some not so strong as they say hefty flex force bags. Mostly they just scare my 3 year old. Tell me again why/how taxidermy got started?

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