Vintage Doily Holder

I posted the last couple of weeks about vintage handkerchief holders here and here.  I thought I might use the idea to make a holder for two crocheted doilies that my grandmother had made back around 1945.

The funny thing at the time was that no one in the family knew that Grandma could crochet.  Then, one day, without a pattern, she picked up a crochet hook and a ball of thread and made a beautiful doily that was flat in the center and had huge ruffles that stood up all around the edge.  Of course, each daughter and granddaughter clamored for one and soon we all had a gorgeous doily or two in our homes.  The problem was that none of us knew how to starch and iron the doilies to make the ruffles stand up, so periodically, Grandma got one of our doilies back to launder and iron for us.  She was always amazed that everyone loved the doilies so much and we were amazed that she came up with this skill in her late 60s.  We figured she must have learned to do it as a child, although she didn’t remember where she might have picked up the knack for crocheting.

The two doilies I have are in such delicate condition that I’m afraid to put them on a table, much less try to starch and iron them.  Instead, I insert them in their holders and hang them safely on the wall.

I printed a vintage snapshot of Grandma on fabric along with a note about when the doily was made.  This was appliqued onto the quilted circle.  I embellished the piece with a couple of vintage buttons and I like to use drapery hooks to display my wall hangings.

A pocket holds the doily without damaging it and also hides some of the worn and unsightly places.

I especially like this small doily as a Fourth of July or patriotic decoration.

I love to look at the old photo of Grandma and her pretty doily and remember all the good times.

Mother and Grandma Helen, ca 1945