Friday, April 30, 2010
I had several comments on the cloth napkins in last week's green and frugal post so I thought I'd devote a whole post to the subject of cloth napkins today!
But don't they require so much care?
Not in my experience. We don't wash ours after every meal but instead use the same ones for several meals or days or until they are noticeably dirty. This may gross some people out, but it works for us! Some families use napkin rings to keep everyone's napkins separate. I throw them in the wash with a load of towels so they don't really create any extra laundry.
I iron napkins for special occasions, otherwise I don't bother with ironing. Linen napkins really look and feel much better if ironed and/or starched. So I don't use those kind. :-) Plain cotton works well and is very low-maintenance.
What about cost?
At regular department store prices, cloth napkins can sometimes be a little on the pricey side. But they don't have to be! Every napkin in my collection has either been purchased on clearance, at yard sales and thrift stores, given as gifts or handmade.
After several uses, the napkins will begin to pay for themselves because you will no longer be buying paper ones.
How do I go about making my own cloth napkins?
Napkins are one of the simplest items to sew, even for a beginner seamstress. I've used small pieces of leftover fabric to make ours. You can also make napkins out of a sheet from the thrift store or an extra sheet that you have around the house. Pretty much any cotton fabric will do!
They are so easy to make! Basically, you cut a square of fabric then hem the edges or you can make cute no-sew napkins like these.
My homemade napkins that you see at the top of the basket are reversible. These would be really cute to make with a stylish "adult" fabric on one side and a kid-friendly print on the other. I was going to do a tutorial on how to make reversible napkins but ran out of time so I found these instructions for you.
--Reversible napkins with matching napkin rings.
--Reversible napkins with adorable rick rack edging.
Some other cute cloth napkins I've found:
-- Five different styles of cloth napkins. I love all of these. The retro prints! The rick rack! The embroidery! The applique!
Alright, I may like cloth napkins a bit too much.
But they are fun! And cheap! And easy to use! Try it!
**This post is part of Frugal Fridays.