Starching Doilies

November 15, 2010

White doily with purple edges against an orange background.  Doily does not appear to be starchedRemember the stiff crochet doilies our grandmothers used to make? The ones that they starched and formed the fluffy and decorative edges.

Well I found a second hand store where I was able to find several crochet doilies, but the edges are flat. Does anyone know how the edges were formed. I know that they were dipped in a starch and water solution, but beyond that I am not sure.


Please let me know if you have any information. I would love to put these under my Tiffany inspired lamps.
Thank you and have a wonderful holiday season.



January 2, 20114 found this helpful
Best Answer

Years ago (1950s) we used to solve this problem by making up a strong solution of hot Argo Starch and then immersing the freshly washed and rinsed doily into the starch solution. Then we'd wring the excess starch out of the doily and place it on a flat surface. Then, here's the surprise, we'd use empty Coca Cola bottles or some other similarly shaped containers around the outer part of the doily and form the ruffles over the bottles. The center was left flat. When dry, the bottles were removed and the ruffle was ready to grace my mother's favorite lamp as it sat on a table in front of our living room picture window. Hope this helps!

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November 15, 2010

I have a beautiful old doily. It is obviously a treasure, but eventually it began to look grey and needed laundering. I did this very carefully. Now, the problem is that the edge, 3" deep is heavily ruffled. When finished correctly the lamp sits on the center of the doily and the edges stand up, starched, all around to a height of about 2-2.5 inches.


I am making starch but maybe I need to spray it rather than submerge it? Any help would be appreciated. Laurie

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