Antique Doilies as Framed Art


Top: My mom’s doily. Bottom: Two of my doilies.

I’m a crocheter. As a young girl, I was fascinated by my mother’s skilled handiwork in the needle arts. Unfortunately, she died when I was young, and so I never had the opportunity to learn from her.

My husband taught me to crochet 20 years ago when I was laid up with a broken ankle. Since then, I have strived to mimic my mom’s skill and style, learning first basic stitches, and eventually learning to read patterns.

Three years ago, I reunited with my mother’s cousin, who had kept a couple of my mother’s doilies and gave them to me. Since I didn’t have much that she had made, I considered them truly precious. And I determined to frame these pieces as works of art.

A lot of us have old doilies and afghans we may have kept that were created by our mothers, grandmothers, and great-grandmothers. Not many people decorate their tabletops and backs of sofas with them anymore, but they still want to feature them in their home as a point of sentimental pride. Most are at a loss to determine how they want to display these beautiful heirloom pieces.


I decided to feature both my and my mom’s doilies much the same way I often frame my silk wall hangings. Essentially, I purchase pre-stretched art canvas at local craft stores and stretch cotton fleece and vintage cotton quilting fabric over the front, sides, and back stretcher bars of the canvas. I miter and clip the corner folds, like I’m wrapping a present and adequately staple the fabrics to the stretcher bars. I tack the doily at crucial hanging points in the doily to provide support and keep the doily from buckling. Then, I screw in Ook hook loops and stretch picture hanging wire along the upper back of the canvas. It is then ready to hang.


The back of my framed piece. You can see it doesn’t really take much to tack the doily down to the canvas. It can be removed at any time for care and re-tacked.

Several people have come into my home and asked me if they could steal my idea. I’m not sure it’s an original idea, but I thought I’d share it on my blog. Steal away!

Now it’s time for you to reach into that old cedar chest or dresser drawer and grab those beautiful doilies and put them on display in your home!

Thanks for visiting,