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Best of Doily Fashion Remakes

December 9, 2012

best of doily fashion remakes

The doily is possibly one of the oldest forms of crochet.  Crochet became popular in Europe in the 19th century, and white, crocheted lace doilies were a must-have accessory for any household. Doilies gained popularity in the Victorian Era, when women hand worked them in their spare time to add a little elegance to their households. They were originally used to protect table and dresser tops.

doily dresser decoration

At one time, doilies were considered so important that a young lady was expected to have at least 10 to be ready for marriage, and these were carefully stored in a trouseau chest to be used when she set up her household.

To make doilies certainly requires a lot of skill to make a beautiful doily and many hours of work.  I never had the patience to make them but luckily for us many considers doilies to be kitsch or granny decorations so you can always find cheap crochet doilies in thrift stores. I have a large collection of doilies I inherited and collected and to re-use them in a wearable item makes me feel good because I feel that I am honouring my ancestors skills and hours of work.

trousseau chest

Trousseau Chest

Today Brides to be may have other ideas to collect doilies  – for the wedding dress itself!

Here are two great examples of Doily wedding or prom dresses.

doily wedding dresses - best of doily fashion remakes

doiley dress

From Wasted Wardrobe

How: Make, or collect doilies from thrift stores.You need a basic bustier dress in the colour you want peep through the doily lace. Then just pin the doilies on the dress and  machine- or slip-stitch in place. If you want to make it even more special you can sew beads and sequins on, embroider flowers, or even dye the doilies.

dyed doily 1

best of doily fashion remakes

Dye, embroider doilies with sequins and beads. Image from Emma Cassi

Embroider Doilies from Living with Punks

Embroider Doilies from Living with Punks

If you want to know how to dye doilies there is a great tutorial at The Haby Goddess

Dyeing Doilies from The Haby Goddess - best of doily fashion remakes

Dyeing Doilies from The Haby Goddess

Just to get your creative juices going even more, here’s some more Doily dresses from Rubychic on Etsy

doily tops

This gorgeous photograph by Bill Gekas just  portrays all the possibilities of doilies embellishment and is a great introduction of how you can use doilies to accessorise clothing.


To embelish a plain sweater, corsage-style, pin doilies, then machine- or slip-stitch in place.

Read more: Accessorize with Vintage Doilies – Country Living

doily on jacket

You can find this great doily collar tutorial at Blog Her

doily collar

Doily lace collar

I also love this Victorian inspired collar from Miss Gracie

doily collar

from Miss Gracie

I adore Chrochet Chokers this one is from Biljana at Etsy but you can make one yourself by either using two small doilies sewn together, or one bigger one that is the right fit for your neck. Just lace through a ribbon or sew on buttons and button loops if necessary and viola! For a evening look dye it black and embellish with sequins and beads if you want, or just add a brooch.

Choker from Biljana

The tutorial for this lovely doily necklace can be found at  Thrift and Style 

Doily necklace

Doily Necklace from Thrift and Style

Make this romantic hairband by snipping medallions from a lace runner and machine-stitching them along a length of velvet ribbon or a piece of elastic.  Read more: Accessorize with Vintage Doilies – Country Living

doily headband - best of doily remakes

Doily lace is great for adding a romantic touch to any garment such as this jacket trimmed with doilies on the inside of a jacket hemline and sleeves or …


Image from FashionRefashion

You can just fold Doilies in half for wrist warmers or wrist corsages such as the one below from Biljana at Etsy or just lace through a ribbon.

Romantic Wrist Corsage from Biljane

These gorgeous romantic cuffs from Martha Villa shows another inspiration for doily cuffs – cut a doily in half, over-lock the raw edges, gather to make a frill, and sew the gathered halves to a straight piece of lace edging trim. Add buttons and button loops.

Victorian inspired cuffs by Marha Villa

Victorian inspired cuffs by Marha Villa

doiley inset

Create this look by just sewing doilies on sleeves. Image from Mode the World

What you can do with doilies seems to be limited only by your imaginations. I love what you can do with bags and shoes and doilies.

doily for fashion accessories - best of doily remakes

bag and shoe ideas from the Celebration Team

Below is a great idea from Recycled Fashion All you have to do is dye doilies black or find some (less likely)  and mod podge onto a pair of  shoes.

You can do the same or sew and glue them to a pair of sneakers like these from Fashiolista

doiley shoes

doiley sneakers

From Fashion Boutique

And if you do not feel like wearing shoes there are the hippy sandals or barefoot sandals made from two doilies – a loop for the toes, attached ribbon crochet cords laced up.

doily barefoot sandal

image from Bohemian Pages

And then there are many ways to make lace purses and bags from doilies such as this great lace tote. Find the tutorial by Samantha Baldwin at Examiner

doily tote

Love this leather and lace doily bag from Urban Heirlooms

You can make this cute bag from lace doilies –  tutorial at Gathering Dust

doily bag

Here are more great purse ideas

Or you can make a similar doily pouch/bag as this one by Sykvia Landman  as per instructions from Country Living

Take two doilies; For the lining, cut two fabric circles, about 3/4 inch smaller than the two doilies. Right sides together, sew together the lining pieces, leaving an opening at the top; turn right side out. Sandwich lining between doilies, topstitch through all layers (lining included), leaving an opening at the top. From a runner, cut a wide handle, folding it lengthwise in thirds. Machine-stitch down its length. At the lining’s opening, turn under the raw edges; stitch the ends of the handle inside.

doily pouch

Or you can make a simple doily pouch by cutting a circular lining of your colour choice, just smaller than where you want to lace a ribbon through. Sew it on the doily, and lace the ribbon through and you have lined doily pouch.

DIY Doily Pouch Purse 10

Tutorial for the above purse from The Thrifliness Miss

Here’s another cute idea for a doily decorated straw tote from Moss Garden

Doily Straw tote

Here’s another great idea from from Rakuten – add a doily pocket! There are many more great ideas on the site. 

from Rakuten

feom Rakuten Cawaii

Who would have thought to add bleach patterns by using a doily as a stencil? See the great tutorial at Cut Out and Keep

doily bleachstenciling patterns

Last but not least in this post is this great idea for the urban romantic by Linda at Warpspeed

Best of Doily ideas

I leave you with this inspiration from pompom rouge –  lace made by crocheting into ricrac. You can learn how to do it by tutorials from Janice Ferguson Sews

doily remakes

Have fun! 

Best of doily fashion remakes

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