Doilies – for a long time they’ve gotten a bad wrap for being old fashioned, tacky dust-collectors – the antithesis of stylish, modern décor. At the same time, the amount of time and work to intricately crochet a doily is admirable – in a way they’re like little works of art. What’s old is new again. The delicate aesthetic of crochet was the inspiration for super-designer, Marcel Wanders with his crochet table.
So, how can grandmother’s doilies be cool? Not by using them the traditional way – as table or buffet centre-pieces – but using them to embellish things such as curtain panels, pillows, or lampshades. The following is how to create a beautiful lampshade using doilies.
- Crocheted doilies
- Lamp shade, covered in paper not fabric
- Liquid starch or watered-down white glue
- X-acto knife
- Scotch tape
- Double-sided tape
- Hot glue or fabric glue
- Acrylic paint, optional
- Using a protractor, make a paper template for each doily size. Measure the radius of each doily, and make its template radius a 1/4” smaller. Cut out the templates (or paper circles).
- Consider your doilies and the pattern of circles that would fit the shade. This lampshade shows an alternating pattern between big and little doilies in a row. You could also try little doilies around the bottom or top of the shade, or even a random polka-dot-like pattern.
- Following your pattern, use scotch tape to secure each doily template onto the shade. With a pencil trace each template, and then remove them.
- Pin the doilies into place on the shade
- Brush the starch water or watered-down glue over the doilies and let dry. This will allow the doilies to take on the curvature of the shade.
- Carefully remove doilies and set aside.
- Using an X-acto knife carefully cut out each circle traced from the templates.
- Optional: Paint the lamp shade and let dry.
- Apply glue to the outer edge of each circle and place the appropriate size doily over the circle. Hold into place for a few seconds to let the glue to set. Be careful not to burn your fingers if using hot glue.
- Using double-sided tape, line the inside of the lampshade with tracing paper. To cut the right amount of tracing paper, measure the circumference of the bottom and top of the shade, as well as the shade’s height and apply the measurements to the tracing paper giving an extra 1/2" to the circumference measurements for a little overlap.