My family made the switch from paper napkins to cloth napkins 18 years ago, and we’ve never looked back. If you’re looking to make a similar change, or simply need some cloth napkins for a special occasion, you’ve come to the right place.
Below is my tried-and-true method for sewing cloth napkins. It’s both quick and easy.
And it doesn’t call for mitering the corners of every napkin, like pretty much every other napkin tutorial on the Internet. Because fact: no one is going to care that you took the time to match your corners up in perfect 45-degree angles on the backside of your napkins. Just do your corners the way I do them, and save the miters for things that actually matter.
Ready to give napkin-making a go? Let’s do it.
The Easiest Way to Sew Cloth Napkins
These instructions make a generous 18″ x 20″ cloth napkin. If you want your napkins to be a different size, just cut your fabric two-inches longer and wider than you want your napkins to be.
What You’ll Need:
- 1-1/4 yards fabric – cotton, linen or polyester (that’s enough for four napkins)
- A ruler
- Sewing pins or sewing clips
- A sewing machine (This is the machine that I have)
Optional (but nice to have):
This is a great opportunity to use up scrap fabric, or any fabric that you’ve been hoarding.
Be sure to read to the end of the post to see the fun use I came up with for my excess of white fabric.
What You Do:
Determine how many napkins you want to make. Then, cut a 20″ x 22″ piece of fabric for each one.
Lay the first piece of fabric on your work surface, good side facing down. Use an air-soluble marker, or pencil, to mark 1/2-inch in on the top and bottom edge.
Fold the edges up to your marks. Then, fold the fabric over a second time to create your hem. Pin, or clip in place.
Stitch a 1/4-inch seam along the top of both hems to secure.
Then, repeat the process on the other two edges of the fabric to complete your first napkin. Easy!
I had an over-abundance of white fabric in my fabric stash, so I made a bunch of white napkins, and practiced my Shibori tie-dye skills.
This would be a fun project to do with kids, and a great gift for anyone who entertains, or is working towards a no-waste lifestyle.
More No-Waste Projects to Make