I've started by painting in the selected colours. First I only glue down the solid part which has no openwork, so that I can paint the underlying colour which will show though the crochet work. To paint the crochet areas I simply slide a piece of paper underneath to cover the background colour before applying a contrast colour to the crochet. Then glue the rest of the cloth down.
I don't obliterate these sections. First of all it would be to dismiss the skills of whoever made it, and secondly they are symbolic of the divisions in society where a thirteen year old girls may well have worked the powerloom that wove the cloth, which was made into a finished tablecloth by a woman with time to sit and sew for pleasure.