Saturday, November 10, 2012

Napkins for the Feast

cloth napkins pocket
Something I love about holidays, is the chance to class things up a bit, just for one day.  Fresh flowers decorating the front room, new soap in the bathrooms, specifically made for whatever holiday you're celebrating, your finest silver and china on display.  So, what's the next step in classing things up...cloth napkins.

Now, I could buy cloth napkins, but that is so not me.  So, of course I am going to make them myself.  I wanted them to be a bit fun and have a splash of color to add some festiveness.  I thought, how much fun would it be to make a silverware pocket on the napkin itself.  So, that's what I did...

I did a bit of research on how big a formal cloth napkin should be.  They are approximately 20 inches by 20 inches.  That is seriously huge.  So, I battled.  My need to be classy with my need to not use a hundred yards of fabric.  I met somewhere in the middle.

Supplies needed for Feast Napkins...

1. Enough white cotton and enough patterned cotton for as many napkins as you want to make.  I can get 9 napkins, measured 13 x 13 in a yard of white fabric.  So if you only need to make 9 napkins, you would need 1 yard of white and 1 yard of patterned fabric.

2.  A selection of jewel-toned fabric cut in 1/4" lengths.  Whatever colors you like.  I have magenta, plum, deep turquoise, pumpkin orange and lime green.

 Measure out your cutlery.  As you can see, mine came to 3 inches wide.  So, I cut my jewel-toned fabric 3.5 inches by 4.5 inches.

Then, fold each side over approximately 1/4".  This is something I just eye-balled, but you can be more accurate.  Iron it down so that the seem holds the crease.

 Do a scant stitch across the top of the pocket. 

 Now, to get your pocket to line up evenly, I drew a line 2" from the bottom of the 13 x 13 inch square of white fabric with an erasable pen.  Then I drew a line straight down in the middle of the white fabric.

Draw a line straight down your pocket, directly in the middle.  Now line things up.  Put the bottom of the pocket on the line that goes across.  Make sure the line down the middle of the pocket lines up at the top and the bottom.  Pin it down. 

Starting at the top, stitch a scant seam around the remaining 3 un-sewn sides of the pocket.  Make sure you've got your seam allowance tucked behind the pocket.  Backstitch at the beginning and the end.

Take your back piece of fabric, and lay it on the white fabric.  Front sides together.  Pin securely all the way around.

You are going to leave an unsewn space of about 3".  The reason for this is because you need to flip your napkin right side out.  So, to mark where I am going to leave the gap, I just do an X with pins.  I start at one X and sew all the way around and stop at the 2nd X.  Make sure to backspace at the beginning and end so you don't rip out stitches.

Sew around the edges using a 1/4" seam allowance.

Flip it inside out.  Make sure to poke out your corners. Now, Press the seams, making sure to press the unsewn space with the seams like you want them to look.  Do a scant stitch around the entire edge of the napkin.  This does two things, it gives you a decorative edge of stitching, but it also closes up the space that's left.

Done.  If you think this looks like too much work, don't worry, it's actually a seriously quick project.  Once you get going, you'll be surprised how quickly you get these completed.

See how nicely they fit.  See how even the lines are on your pocket!!

Get creative.  I tied my napkins with a gold ribbon, placed them on top of the plates and called them gorgeous.

Try cloth napkins this year...classy!  Big time.

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  1. Alright know I don't sew...but these are so nice with their color in the center, that I'm pinning it to try! You have seriously inspired me. Hoping to do some for Christmas!

    1. Danni!! I so want you to make these for Christmas. I was thinking I'd make a Christmas batch also to show people how cute they are. Now I'll just let you make em and post em. :)

  2. Heather these are great! I love using cloth napkins but only buy them from the clearance section. I never thought about making them...well, I can't sew straight! Very nicely done. Some Christmas themed napkins would be very cool. Maybe Danni will make some too??? ;)

    1. Sherry, thanks for the love. If you wanted to pracitise straight stitching, these would be a great project for you...

  3. Heather girl - you are amazing!!!! These napkins are fantastic! love!!!!!

  4. I came over from Silo Hill, and I gotta tell you these napkins are so great. Just that little something different that makes them special, and says "hey, I am glad you are here, I wanted it to be nice for you"!

    1. Sandra, I'm so glad you stopped by. Danni over at Silo Hill is pretty much the best, isn't she? I love your sentiment up there, that's exactly what cloth napkins say...I think you're special enough and am so glad you're here that I'm willing to do laundry after you leave. :)


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