I managed to get over the first failure with the lace knitting and bought some proper cotton in order to have another go at it.
Valentine Day was the casting-on date (worked well as therapy against weird relationship).
The pattern is called 'Dahlie', it's from a German Burda magazine - E908 and it was designed by Herbert Niebling, according to a few Internet references.
It's absolutly great to work.
I've used DMC Cebelia 20 (light beige) and 2.5 mm needles.
This is the stage after a week: it's just an ugly mass of stitches. I can't say I had much enthusiasm in knitting it - if you've never done lace it's difficult to imagine how much different and nicer it's going to be after it is getting blocked.
I draw the circle on a present wrapping paper and after placing the wet doily on it, the colors started to appear from the other side of the paper - so I needed to lift the doily FAST, removed the paper - but kept the needles in place.
This is the doily, with the cat assisting all the time - she even slept on the towel all night long.
Next morning 'beauty shot':
While doing the 'Dahlie' I found out about the Knitting Olympics, but it was too late for me to join.
I spent a lot to find the Great Britain team leader - had no luck though.
Obviously I had no choice but to start my own team :) , joined it and finished on time, a few hours before the Olympics closing ceremonies.
So I declare this as my Olympic project in my own Knitting Olympics competition :).
And now the conclusions:
A great pattern will produce a great doily.
A high quality yarn is essential - DMC Cebelia was a very good choice indeed.
And last but not the least : Don't even think of starting a lace pattern without joining a forum first :).
Many thanks to the Teddys ( my german friends from the Teddys forum ) and to the Knitter's Review forum.