Vintage Decorating-Starched Doilies

Ironing starched dolies

Ironing starched doilies

If you are visiting from Karen Ehman’s Vintage Blog Hop, welcome!

People come to our house every week inquiring about our barn weddings. I think what  attracts so many is the vintage memorabilia. It lures the imagination to the past. People long to relive memories of days gone by. In the olden days, life was more simple and people depended on friends and family for the very essence of life itself.

Hence, vintage parties are a huge hit.  The cool thing is, you can create the old-fashioned look and food on a tight budget. When I throw a party I do most of my decorating shopping at the local thrift store. My budget is typically $1 and I rarely go above $3 for any given item.

Our daughter, Rachael who got married in May  came up with the idea to decorate our barn with starched doilies for her wedding. It turned out great! We borrowed doilies from friends, used ones we already had and bought some for less than a dollar a piece at thrift stores. We couldn’t have spent thousands of dollars and been any happier with the outcome.

I spent hours cooking up batches of starch and then starching the doilies.

Every  good party has to have homemade goodies. Back in the day you wouldn’t have had anything but- homemade. We spent days making truffles for Rachael’s wedding.  It took a long time, but the memories we made while making them will never ever be forgotten. They cost a fraction of what store-bought truffles  cost and people love them so much more.

Did you ever see the movie, Pollyanna? If you haven’t you must watch it. One scene in the movie they’re making cakes for a fair, the cakes are GI-NORMOUS! Who doesn’t want huge yummy homemade cakes at their party?

I write all this to say- people love old fashioned parties with authentic fellowship and yummy food.

The fall is a great time to have a vintage party. The goal is to spend the least amount of money, but make it special.  Ask  people to make and bring homemade goodies. Now all you have to do is, DO IT!

Simple + Family +Friends=Spiritual blessings!

“ The neighborhood bar is possibly the best counterfeit that there is to the fellowship Christ wants us to give his church. It’s an imitation, dispensing liquor instead of grace, escape rather than reality – but it is a permissive, accepting and inclusive fellowship. It is unshockable. It is democratic. You can tell people secrets, and they usually don’t tell others or even want to. The bar flourishes not because most people are alcoholics, but because God has put into the human heart the desire to know and be known, to love and be loved, and so many seek a counterfeit at the price of a few beers.” Charles Swindoll

1/2 cup starch 1 1/4 cups water 1/2 cup cold water Dissolve starch in cold water. Boil the 1 1/4 cups water, stirring constantly. Remove from flame, then slowly stir the starch mixture into boiling water, stirring constantly. Place back on flame until it thickens. As soon as the starch is cool enough to handle, dip doily and squeeze through it thoroughly. Wring out the extra starch. The doily should be wet with starch, but there should be no starch in the spaces or openwork. Pin center of doily in true shape and allow to dry thoroughly. After it is dry, press with a steam iron. If a regular iron is used, dampen the doily slightly before pressing. Pin folds of ruffle in position and leave until thoroughly dry.

Recipe for starched doilies: 1/2 cup starch 1 1/4 cups water 1/2 cup cold water. Dissolve starch in cold water and stir. Boil the 1 1/4 cups water and then pour dissolved starch into water.  Cook on medium low until thick. Take off heat. As soon as the starch is cool enough to handle, dip doily and squeeze through it thoroughly. Wring out the extra starch. The doily should be wet with starch, and be no dry places.  Press with  an  iron. Lay flat to dry.

Photo's from Sharon's iPhone Sept-July 1 1587

 Photo's from Sharon's iPhone Sept-July 1 1588

 Photo's from Sharon's iPhone Sept-July 1 1590

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We made 300 of these truffles inside of jewel shaped ice cube molds. I only had one mold that made 6 at a time. That's way it took so long. They are made with crushed hazelnuts, crushed hazelnut wafers and Nutella-YUM

Homemade truffles-made with crushed hazelnuts, crushed hazelnut filled wafers and Nutella- taste just like Ferrero Rocher Fine Hazelnut truffles- We made them inside jewel shaped ice-cube molds.  We only had one mold. One mold only made 6 truffles at a time. That’s what took so much time! We made 300 of these. The photo isn’t showing it well, but they have gold glitter on them.

Each of our daughters made and myself made deserts- This one is a 5 layer gluten free cake with buttercream frosting

A five layer cake is a hit at any party- 5 layer gluten free cake with buttercream frosting

Decorating set

I’m giving away a cake decorating kit and a $25 ebay gift certificate at Karen Ehman’s blog hop. Hop on over there to enter for a chance to win!

  • Mandy Currie said:

    I so enjoyed this post, I still make doilies and love them, it is one of the things I like to do is save other people's beautiful handwork from charity or thrift stores. It would be such fun to start decorating cakes in the old fashioned way, thank you for the opportunity. Kind Regards Mandy Currie (

  • Abby said:

    Beautiful post, loved hearing about the wedding prep, truffles are delightful. I have tons of vintage doilies, never thought of starching and hanging them for home decor. What a great idea. Thanks!