Lacy doilies, once thought of as a relic of stuffy Victorian interiors, are newly appreciated as artifacts of a pre-feminist past. The mandala-like bits of lace were mostly handmade, and speak of a time when women, with few creative outlets, made beautiful yet anonymous things for the home or to give as gifts. This season, the trend for crochet gives way to a more delicate tatted lace, used for tops, dresses, ponchos and accessories. Pure white or tea-stained beiges emphasize the doily feel.
Crochet, which started edging its way in a year ago, is in full expression on New York runways this week. Crochet, pointelle and other openwork stitcheries are used for midi-dresses, pullovers and bodysuits, bringing texture and interest to basic silhouettes. Deep flounces, scallop edges, and little beads add more post-hippie chic to this crafty technique.