Dinner parties at home won't be complete without fancy cloth napkins you've made yourself. Add personality to the dinner table and try these ideas!
How to Sew Cloth Napkins | 20 DIY Ideas and Tutorials
You Need to Start Making Your Own Cloth Napkins for These Reasons
When preparing for a house party, you have to cover all your bases. The food should taste heavenly, everyone should sit comfortably, and your table set-up should be exquisite.
It's all about providing a complete dining experience—one your guests will greatly appreciate. Dinner parties at home won't be complete without table linens from table runners, dinner napkins, and tablecloths.
The whole fabric set on your table setting adds a touch of class and personality to the dinner table. So, if you want to have the best-looking cloth napkins on your dinner table, go ahead and make one on your own with these cloth napkin ideas you can give a try!
If you've never sewn your own table linens, I've got a couple of reasons here to convince you otherwise. One of the things I love about them is I can turn my favorite fabrics into dinner napkins and tablecloths.
I can also add my personal touches to them like leaf stamps and special embroidery designs. Mixing and matching my cloth napkins with my other dinner table set-up is fun, too.
So, if you're in need of tutorials to get you started, help yourself to these nifty and fancy DIY ideas!
1. Monogram Cloth Napkins
On top of my list are monogram cloth napkins because I believe every household should have a set. I already have a set of embroidered monogram, but I'm also going to give these inked ones a try.
It's best to use a neutral-colored plain fabric for this napkin to make the monogram stand out. Keep it classy by using a neutral color for the ink too. You can never go wrong with a black-and-white combo!
2. Mitered Corner Table Napkins
Now you know the basic way of sewing cloth napkins, you can try making one with mitered corners. Essentially, it's the same cloth napkin, except if you use this technique, you're going to have more pointy corners.
I know some people are quite particular about it, and it does make the napkin look more elegant. So if you're up for it, you can check this idea out.
3. Dinner Party Glam Cloth Napkins
Impress your guests with these glam and chic dinner party cloth napkins! It's really simple to make them, but then again, the glam factor will depend on the fabric you choose.
May I suggest using something with metallic prints? Those accents always complement the fancy dinnerware.
4. Floral Mood Cloth Napkins
Spring may be over, but if you're in a flowery mood, then don't let the season stop you! Floral-printed cloth napkins are a staple in table napkin collections.
There's something about flowers that really lightens up the mood and make the table setting more vibrant! These designs work great with simple or extravagant set-ups!
5. How to Make Linen Napkins
Most often, what we use for cloth napkins is the cotton fabric. But if you want to sew linen fabric, it shouldn't be a problem at all.
I have three workable ideas here you might want to try: frayed, folded, and serged. Each one has its own design so sew what you think is best for your table setting.
6. Self-Binding Napkin Tutorial
A self-binding cloth napkin is a chic idea if you want to use two beautiful fabrics on a piece of a table napkin. There's a technique to make this work and make it look seamless.
So if you're undecided on what fabric to use or maybe, you have two pieces of fabrics to complement each other beautifully, then this is the project you should take on.
7. Watercolor Fabric Napkins
By now, you already know the basic steps of making cloth napkins. So, what you need to learn next is how to design your napkins in a fancier and more personal way.
One of the techniques I love is creating a watercolor effect through painting. You don't really use watercolor on this one (because it will wash away) but instead, you will use ink and fabric paint to achieve a watercolor effect. Genius!
8. Leaf-Stamped Napkins
Stamping is another great way to personalize your cloth napkins. Sometimes, we just can't find the fabric we have in mind.
In cases like this, that shouldn't stop you from designing your own fabric. It's an affordable and creative way of making new fabric designs, and it's not just for cloth napkins too.
This fall season, make it a point to try out these leaf-stamped napkins.
9. Heart-Stitched Cloth Napkins
I was looking for Valentine's Day-inspired cloth napkin and found this lovely idea. Instead of looking for fabric with heart designs or anything like that, why don't you just make heart stitches on the cloth napkin?
They're cute and simple napkin accents and won't limit these napkins to just Heart's Day!
10. Fall-Inspired Cloth Napkins
The secret is in finding the right fabric design that fits the season perfectly. Further, if you know the basic way of sewing cloth napkins, you can start getting more creative on your own.
11. Linen Lace Napkins
This is probably the prettiest and cutest napkins from this bunch, and I think it's perfect for those tea parties you'll host with the ladies.
Polka dots, laces, and linen fabric show what shabby chic is all about. So if you're into vintage or rustic table settings, this will be a great addition to your collection.
12. DIY Farmhouse Style Napkins
We have to admit, this isn’t an easy feat for sewing beginners, but if you’re up for the challenge, make sure to study the tutorial for sure-fire success. You will use zigzag stitches to sew the very edge of your napkin to the lovely pom-pom fringe trim.
For this, you need steady yet light and easy hands as you guide the joined edges of the napkin and trim through the sewing machine.
13. Tiny Hem on Table Napkins
Learn how to sew a tiny hem and make a flawless stitched hem on your textile project that's looking barely there. If you like your table napkin soft and the fabric flowy, this tiny hem will do it justice.
For softer napkins, pick natural fabrics like linen and woven cotton, or synthetic fabrics like polyester. Be reminded, synthetic fibers are not heat resistant so don't use them when handling hot kitchen wares.
14. Springtime Running Stitch Napkins
From house to kitchen decor, rustic designs seem to be the trend, and for good reasons. They bring out a cozy vibe to any home, and napkins with a running stitch bring that coziness to the table.
The best part about this sewing project is that its super easy. You can use regular thread but for decorative design, embroidery floss would be great.
15. DIY Cloth Napkins With Mitered Corners and Trim
Cloth napkins with mitered corners have an elegance to the design with their flawless finish. It also reinforces the hems of the napkins, giving you sturdy pieces you can use for a long time.
This DIY cloth napkin with trim is easier to apply. Simply lay the trim over the hem closest to the edges and sew along.
16. Easy Handmade Cloth Napkins Tutorial
Finally! A chance to put your stash of fat quarters to good use. A few minutes will yield you a piece and more in just an hour.
This easy tutorial will make you a sweet set of a super soft napkin set you can give as gifts.
17. Sparkling Napkin With Decorative Stitch Border
Take your plain and simple table napkins up a notch with a decorative stitch border accent. Most sewing machines have a few decorative stitches, so put those into good use.
Linen and linen blend fabric would be best for this project. Make sure to wash your fabric first to avoid puckering.
18. Easy Hand-Sewn Table Napkins
Of course, machine sewing is practical, but there is a sentimental charm in hand sewing we love. For small sewing projects like table napkins, I find hand sewing relaxing and convenient as I can take it everywhere with me.
For this napkin tutorial, pick a fabric you love and sew whenever you feel like it, especially on your downtime. We have to warn you though, anyone can easily get hooked and you might be sewing more cloth napkin sets than you need.
19. Flannel Napkin Tutorial
One of the most ideal fabrics for cloth napkin is flannel because it’s soft, absorbent, and inexpensive with an array of lovely patterns and a variety of colors to choose from.
I'm making these flannel fabric napkins for my kids with the comfort of knowing it's super soft and friendly to my kids' skin. With the kids' daily use, I'm not going to run out of napkins made from flannel fabric.
20. DIY Double-Sided Table Napkins
You've just come across the easiest and most foolproof DIY cloth napkin tutorial. Knock yourself out with this simple yet practical design.
Now that you have your DIY cloth napkins, it's time to learn how to fold cloth napkins with these lovely techniques from ClaCali:
Sewing cloth napkins on your own will reward you with a simple yet fancy set of table napkins you’ll be proud to bring out on special occasions. Knowing you made it and saved a good amount, too, is just another feather added to your cap.
Which cloth napkin idea is your favorite? Let us know in the comments section below!
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Editor's Note: This article was originally published on November 13, 2017, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.