Noela Dillon and Dorothy Devine have coffee using some of the creations made from the Dillon family pieces.
Noela Dillon and Dorothy Devine have coffee using some of the creations made from the Dillon family pieces. Emma Channon

Family treasures' new lease of life

WHEN Noela Dillon and her husband James decided to get rid of unnecessary household items last year, they faced what a lot of families do.

Looking at the piles of doilies, handkerchiefs, clothes and other beautiful pieces passed down from older generations of family members, Mrs Dillon found she couldn't throw them out - but she knew she'd rarely, if ever, use them.

So she called on her good friend and textile artist Dorothy Devine to help out.

The end result is a beautiful series of pieces - from a set of dining table mats and runner to three beautiful quilts - all made from the priceless items, some up to 100 years old.

Each segment, perhaps from the corner of a handkerchief, the hem of a vintage dress from New York or a square of silk underwear, tells a story.

Mrs Dillon said she was thrilled with the end result.

"I think they're all gorgeous. There's just so much history behind them," she said.

"We had some collaboration about what they would be turned into, but I just felt I knew Dorothy well enough that she would create something I would love."

Mrs Devine began working on them in July last year.

As the two women drink their coffee, they run their hands over various patches of the placemats, talking about what each piece of material used to be.

Each piece has been put together impeccably, with intricate details like the stitching of a red rose or a strip of pink silk standing out.

The designs will be available for public viewing when they're hung in an exhibition at Just Because, on Palmerin St, all through February.

Mrs Dillon and Mrs Devine said they hoped people would admire the pieces while drinking cups of coffee.


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