Tutorial on how to stiffen Crochet with Starch

Starch a Doily and make a Bowl

crochet doily linda permann

I crocheted a doily and wanted to shape a pretty bowl out of it. To achieve that I starched the doily with potato starch. Below you see a photo tutorial, that shows you every step in the process.

First you need the ingredients for the stiffening.


  • ½ cup boiling water
  • ½ cup starch – I used potato starch
  • ½ cup cold water

How to starch a Crochet Doily

Put the starch into the cold water. Bring the other ½ cup water to boiling temperature and pour the starch/water mixture into the hot water. Continue boiling the water while stirring constantly. When the starch starts to thicken take it off the heat.

When the starch has cooled and you can safely handle the starch with your hands put the doily into the bowl and rub the starch gently into it.

Take a bowl which bottom has the desired shape of the finished crochet bowl. Put transparent food plastic wrap around the bottom of it.

crochet doily starching

Place the doily onto a towel and press the towel against it so excess starch gets removed. There should be no starch left in the spaces.

Place the soaked doily on top of the bowl and remove any extra starch that sits in the corners of the doily. The doily feels very glibbery and sticky now.

crochet doily starching stiffening

Wait for 2-4 days until the doily is completely dry. Then remove the doily carefully from the plastic and you have a pretty bowl.

azalea bowl linda permann crochet starch starching stiffening

The shown doily is the Azalea Bowl by Linda Permann from Interweave Crochet, Summer 2011. Any thread crochet doliy can be used with this technique. You don’t have to crochet the doily yourself. You can find them on fleemarkets or in second hand shops. Perhaps dying them would also create great effects.

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