Blow up a balloon, cover it in doilies using a craft glue. When it's dry, pop the balloon & you have an awesome decoration. Bet you could use it as the lampshade on a small pendant light, too. Great-gramma's and my MIL's doilies may find another use.
Lace lanterns are made by overlapping lace doilies on an inflated balloon and brushing fabric stiffener (or wallpaper glue, or even white glue) onto the doilies. Make sure to cover whole thing with the glue.