At last! I think I have a good method of blocking my doilies. As you know if you have ever done this, what to use as a blocking board, how to get it dry in a reasonable amount of time, and where to put it while it dries are the age old problems. Then the next time you're ready to block, the perfect piece of cardboard has disappeared or been used as a backdrop for a school project. Ok!
With the suggestion from one of my Crochet Partners, I ordered those soft tiles that you snap together. They are 12" x 12", so I ordered nine for less than $25 from www.imaginationproject.com
. I figured that was big enough for anything I was going to block. They can be configured any way you need them, 3x3, 2x4, or just use one for a small doily. I am storing them in one of those zippered bags that a set of sheets came in. Voila! The blocking board problem is solved.
I usually hand was my doilies unless I'm doing all of them at once, then I put them in a lingerie bag and throw them in the washer with a load of clothes. I put them in a zip lock type bag with my liquid starch and let them set for a while to really soak up that starch. I squeeze out as much excess starch as possible, but they are still really soggy! So, needing to get one dry in a very short amount of time, I threw it in the dryer for about 5 or 10 minutes. Wonderful, still wet enough to block but not so wet it will take a week to dry. With the help of a fan, I dried a 28" doily in about 6 hours. To pin the project, I like to use the stainless steel T-pins. I got mine at Walmart a long time ago. Hope they still have them because I need more. If I don't have enough of them, I use stainless steel quilt pins with the little ball on top. I find the t-pins are the easiest to use. Your fingers can get really sore after putting dozens of pins in a doily. Not so much with the t-pins. By the way, I still use wax paper under my doily so it doesn't stick to the tiles.
Now it's blocked and just needs time to dry. What to do with it? Need to eat on the table, don't want a cat laying in the middle of it. These tiles are snapped together good enough to move the whole project. This morning, I took mine outside and leaned it up against a wall on a small table. How great is that? Drying in the fresh air, not in my way. Hooray!
I hope these tips help you out, and if you have any more, please share.