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For several years now I have been quietly working on a project called where I collect vintage handmade doilies sold here on Ebay. I buy them from sellers from all over the US who often get them from flea markets, auctions, estate sales, antique stores, and the like. Every once in a while I find sellers who are downsizing family collections or selling off a recently deceased loved one's estate. The goal of this project is to find out who made a particular doily, or in the absence of this, at least some information about how the seller came across the textile. I always message them with the question, "Can you tell me who made this doily, or anything about where it came from?". I archive their responses, which generally don't shed much light, and document the textile (I tend toward crocheted doilies from the 1930's-1950's with colorful floral details). I am interested in the moment when these painstakingly handmade items lose their histories - the stories and memories of the maker and their loved ones. This occurs so pointedly when these items are placed on the vintage market, regardless of their journey. There is a real question of value here - emotional value and the value of labor - and how much this value is lessened as soon as it is released into the flow of a marketplace like Ebay. So, can you tell me who made this doily or where it came from? Any information you may have would be so helpful.

Thank you and have a great day,


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