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  • Irina

Turn your damaged doilies into Lavender Sachets

The more I work with vintage doilies, the more inspiration I get. Last year I designed a pattern "Patchwork doily pouch" (you can find it here ), made a quilt and few small makes from vintage doilies and lace. All of them featured beautiful vintage items in perfect condition. But what to do with all those pieces that are not so good or damaged?

Here is a short tutorial on how to make a lavender sachet from a broken doily. It is a quick and easy project that also allows you to use small scraps of linen. I used my sewing machine but it can be stitched entirely by hand too. This tutorial is an invitation for your to explore a simple technique, rescue few imperfect vintage doilies along the way and get inspired to create more.

I got this beauty from a friend. It is very old and rather delicate. As you can see only few out of 11 crocheted petals were without any damage and there were holes and stains on linen part. When she gave it to me she wasn´t sure if it would be even possible to salvage anything there. I cleaned the stains and decided to turn it into lavender sachet.

1. Cut a piece of linen suitable in size for a sachet. Mine was 4 1/2" wide x 5" long (11.4 x 12.7cm). Size depends on the doily or your preference.

Pin the undamaged part of doily to linen. Don´t cut the doily.

For the second sachet, the placement of the doily was defined by the damage on the petal.

2. Attach the doily to linen by machine stitching right at the crochet edge. Use regular stitch length 2.5 and clear sewing machine foot so you can see where you are stitching.

3. Cut the excess doily and stitch around the doily at 1/8" (0.3 cm) from the linen edge to make sure the doily part is attached to linen.

4. Cut a piece of linen the same size as the piece with doily. Place both pieces RS together and stitch around at 3/8" (1cm) from the edge, leaving an 1 1/2" (3.8cm) opening on the side without doily. Back stitch at the beginning and end. Trim the seam allowances to 1/4" (0.6cm) with pinking shears and clip the corners.

5. Turn the sachet right side out through the opening and give it a good press from the back side.

6. Fill the bags with dried lavender. I didn´t have a funnel, so I made it from a plastic bottle.

8. Sew the opening closed with a ladder stitch!

Your sachet is ready!

I meant to make only 2 lavender sachets but then I went nuts and made 18! I kept finding pieces that were perfect for it and the only thing that stopped me was the amount of dried lavender I had.

I had a l piece of crochet lace that adorned a pillow case for many years. The pillow case is gone. I still keep that lace because my mom made it. I turned a broken bit into a flower by appliqueing it and embroidering a stem and a leaf.

You can also use embroidery, leftover pieces of ribbon and crochet lace.

I also found in my stash a gorgeous piece of antique pillow case with white work that was too fragile to be used in anything. I ironed thin cotton based fusible interfacing to the back to strengthen the fabric. Here are the 5 beautiful sachets.

Then I found another small piece from a cotton bed sheet with white work and a monogram. I didn´t want to throw away small off cuts of the embroidery and made them into tags and added tiny red stitches.

Three small pieces with monograms were upcycled as well and I added some tags and buttons.

These are just few examples to make your creative juices flow. Your pieces might look different but I am sure they will inspire you as well.

Using same method you can use a broken doily, some lace or a hankie with embroidery to make a basket. You can find a free basket tutorial here. The only difference is that I used fusible foam interfacing, quilted the grid and added binding at the top.

Sturdier doilies and linens can be made into a pillow.

I made that pillow completely from recycled materials (vintage embroidered doily, old IKEA duvet cover, old pillow case as backing for the quilted panel) and leftover pieces of batting.

I hope this post will inspire you to go through your stash of old linens and rescue some pieces so you can use them with joy!

Happy Stitching!❤

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