Doily Madness

I’ve recently become obsessed with crocheting doilies. Specifically doilies designed by Grace Fearon of Emilyandthe Handmade Designs. These doilies have so much incredible texture. They’re so fun to make and really hard to put down.

First, I made Evelyn:

Evelyn Doily in Knit Picks Curio, Lichen colorway.

 

Evelyn is 16 inches in diameter from point to point. This was a Crochet-Along (CAL) that several members of the Emilyandthe Facebook group participated in. Grace released the pattern in 5 parts over 15 days. It was so much fun to compare progress with other people and see their color choices.

Next, I made Francisco.

Francisco Doily

 

Francisco is about 17 inches in diameter from point to point. Too big for my little table to hold it all! I feel like I blocked it a little bit too aggressively, so I may reblock it to a smaller diameter at some point in the future.

My mom bought me the pattern for Francisco. Thanks, Mom!

Finally, I chose a free pattern of Grace’s for a small doily, just because I needed to make one more. This is Elise.

Elise Doily

It’s really difficult to get a good picture of that burgundy yarn and capture all the texture of the doily, as well.

 

Elise was such a fun and fast project. It took me about 2 days from start to finish.

Besides the texture, construction and beauty of the doilies, another thing I love about Grace’s designs is that the most of the names are significant. Some names are just ones she liked, others have deep personal meaning for her.

  • Evelyn was named for the unborn baby of a friend of Grace’s. The baby has a fatal genetic condition called NKH. In the doily, I see angels spreading their wings in the middle section.
  • Francisco was named for a friend of Grace’s family, who has Parkinsons disease and who has no family nearby to help care for him. Grace’s husband takes care of him on a regular basis and they discovered he has very little income. The proceeds from the purchase of this pattern go directly to Francisco’s care. This is the only doily with a masculine name.
  • Elise was named in honor of one of Genevieve Jurgensen’s two young girls who passed away in 1980. (The other daughter is Mathilde and there is a doily named for her, too.) The girls were killed in a drunk driving accident. Grace read Jurgensen’s memoir and named these doilies after the girls.

I’ve been so enamored with these doilies. I’ve been poring over the designs trying to decide which to make next. My sweet husband encouraged me to go ahead and buy one of the Emilyandthe Handmade books, rather than buying the patterns individually. I did, and Volume 3 is here with me. Now I just must decide which of the 7 patterns to make next! My favorites of those are Naomi and Marion… although Ruth and Hazel are pretty, too!

More than once I’ve asked myself (and I’ve been asked), “What am I going to do with all these doilies?” and the answer is… I don’t know yet. With two little boys, four cats and a dog, there’s no safe flat surface to display anything in this house. I do have space for one at work and I will probably take one there. Mom has suggested that I frame them, and that’s certainly a good idea, especially if I want to display them here at home. I think a shadowbox frame would do best for most of these with so much texture, rather than pressing them flat under glass. Who knows, maybe my entire family will get doilies for Christmas, then they can decide what to do with them! I just enjoy making them and will keep on with it for as long as the enjoyment lasts (or until I make them all!)

6 Comments

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6 Responses to Doily Madness

  1. Sandra Green

    These are just lovely Abby! I enjoy crocheting so much! I still have the very first Dolie I made. It was in 1969. Aunt Freda was sitting at the hospital with me when my Dad was sick. She taught me to crochet. Dad wanted to see it so I showed it to him. He said “My God you have been working on that all day and it is no bigger than a quarter!” Aunt Freda and I got a good laugh out of that.

    • abby

      Thank you, Sandra! I can’t believe you learned to crochet by doing doilies! I couldn’t even do a square when I first learned. I tried to make a washcloth and it is a little… we’ll just call it wonky. 😉

      I love that story. Great Aunt Freda was a gem! I regret not spending more time getting to know that side of the family as an adult.

  2. Keisha

    Gorgeous! 😀 You could also make them into dream catchers. I’ve seen a lot of them out there. I tried my hand at a couple but with thicker yarn and other colors. I sold one but kept the other.

    I’ve been working more with threads recently doing barefoot sandals. I think mostly because they are easy patterns to remember (I have a lot of trouble with that recently), I can do them in a few hours and I can carry them more easily where ever I go. The trouble seems to be in the selling of items. Crochet is becoming such a flooded market. When I make silly hats, walmart has hundreds of the same type of knitted hats at half or a 1/4 of the price. I make quicker and just as hard worked items and I end up with a stack of unsold items. Or items that were custom made and never paid for. I have a $70 octopus in my living room and 6 bun hats from last fall not paid for. So as much as I love my crochet it looks like I’ll just have to hobby it for a while and focus on trying to find data entry or customer service work again.

    • abby

      It’s tough to make money selling handmade items. If you charge what they’re worth, they’re priced out of range of most people. If you price to sell, you’re making maybe $0.25 per hour. You can’t compete with Walmart or amazon. The things I’ve had the most success with have been personalized and designed just for the person buying them.

      Interestingly, though, there is no machine that can crochet. Any crochet you see in a store has been made by hand by someone.

  3. Your work is so lovely and I’m glad you are enjoying doing them. Mamaw loved doing doilies and she would have been very impressed with your work. And hey, a handmade piece of art for Christmas sounds like a wonderful idea.

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