cloth napkins - version 2

Cloth napkins...take two, AKA "the pillow method". In this post, I shared one way to make cloth napkins, but today, I'd like to demonstrate another variation. Because they're two-ply, today's napkins use twice as much fabric, but they're actually a bit simpler sewing-wise.

First, collect your fabric. As a reminder: the general sizes are 22" x 22" for formal, 20" x 20" for dinner, 17" x 17" for lunch, and 10" x 10" for cocktail. Allow for your desired seam allowance on all sides then cut out your squares. As with the first batch, I did 18" squares with a 1" seam allowance on all sides, so each piece was cut to 20" x 20". Unlike the other tutorial, you will need two squares per napkin, either in the same fabric or in coordinating pieces.

Lay your squares with the right-sides facing each other. This is a sewing 101 idea that seemed crazy when I first started learning - the catch is to remember that any time you are sewing like this, eventually the pieces will be flipped inside-out. I don't know why but that seemed crazy to my younger self, sitting bewildered in front of a Singer.

Pin the edges and sew a 1/2" seam all the way around, pivoting at the corners by raising your machine's presser foot while the needle is in the lowered position still in the fabric. Turn the angle of the fabric and lower the presser foot back down, then continue to sew at a 90 degree angle from the seam you just completed. Just MAKE SURE to leave a gap of 2-3" at the end so you have room to flip the fabric.

Clip the excess fabric from the corners then carefully turn your entire project inside-out so the right sides are now out and your seam is hidden inside the napkin. At this point, I like to iron everything to make sure it lines up before final sewing passes. (Side project: If you were making a pillow, just leave a larger gap in the hem then after flipping, stuff with a pillow mold or Poly-Fil before closing. This is a great beginner project!)

Finally, place a pin to hold the inside-out seam gap in place then sew around the napkin edge to secure it. As with the other style napkins, I chose to do a single line stitch at the 1/2" and at the 1/4" mark. Final result below.

As with the other napkins, just fold them into quarters and stack them up for everyday use. 

Because this version uses twice as much fabric, I only made two napkins this go around. I plan to use both versions for a while and see which ones we prefer and which hold up best for use and washing. 

Do you have a favorite napkin method or some family napkins that you love?

1 comment:

  1. I love this! I just got a sewing machine and I would love to make my own cloth napkins! Thanks for the tutorial :)


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