How to Make Cloth Napkins

Hey everyone,

Welcome to the first featured guest What I Made Wednesday! I am so excited to introduce you to my friend Lucie. She is one talented lady and I just love her style. Today she walks us through how to make reusable cloth napkins. Enjoy!
-Katelyn

Hi there! I’m Lucie of The Little Green Wagon.

I am a homesteader, a stay at home mother of two young boys, a chicken mom, and a pumpkin patcher. I’m so excited to get to share something with you that I’ve made for What I Made Wednesday with the beautiful Wild Rose Farmer – Katelyn. I’ve recently started taking a much closer look at all the areas of waste and chemicals within my home, and what ways can I cut down. I have been compiling these together with weekly posts on Instagram using tag #TheLittleGreenLifestyle so you can follow along!

When I looked at all of the products that we purchase regularly, I was shocked by how much of it were items we only use once before we toss them in the trash – plastic storage bags, paper plates, feminine products… the list goes on and on. I was literally spending hard earned money on garbage – sent right back out the door to pollute our landfills. Swapping some of these single use items for a reusable version not only helps me to save money, but is much better for our planet as well.

Kitchens and bathrooms are the number one places to make these switches in the home. Today I want to talk about paper napkins!

Does your family use a napkin at every meal? This is a simple place to make a switch. Using cloth napkins instead of paper ones is an easy way to cut down on waste. I know people worry that they are more time consuming and that you have to iron them – but you don’t! It’s okay if they are bit wrinkly for everyday use. I like to keep 10-12 in my kitchen so my messy family is never without. Since I love to sew, making my own was a no brainer for me. But if sewing isn’t your jam, you can always purchase a set. Here’s a quick tutorial on how you can make your own cloth napkins!

Materials

  • 1 yard of organic cotton (makes 4 napkins)
  • Organic thread

I’ve chosen a few coordinating patterns to add interest, but you can choose whatever you’d like.

You will also need:

  • Rotary cutter and cutting mat
  • Ruler
  • Pins
  • Sewing machine
  • Marking tool
  • Iron/ironing board

Instructions 

  1. I always like to wash and iron my fabric prior to doing any projects to avoid post sewing shrinkage. It’s not the end of the world on something like this – but I’ve skipped this step in the past and ended up with some pretty wonky seams after a few washes. Cut your fabric into 18”x18” squares. 
  2. Mark a line 1/2” all the way around your square. I’m a very visual person and need to see my lines, so I used a water soluble fabric marker that disappears after washing.

3. Fold the edge of your fabric up to the line and iron the crease as shown. Then then fold it onto itself again and iron that crease as well. You should have folds at 1/4” and 1/2”. Repeat on all four edges. 

4. Next, fold your corner up at a 45 degree angle so your creases line up. Then cut off the excess as shown.

5. Now, leaving your corner at the 45 degrees, re-fold your edges back up, and pin them into place giving you a nice mitered corner.

6. Lastly, stitch around the entire napkin with around a 1/8” seam. Viola! You have an adorable, organic cotton napkin that can be used over and over again!

I love the fun pop of color these napkins add to my kitchen – and I REALLY love that I’ve stopped throwing so much trash and money into my garbage can. Hope you like WHAT I MADE!

– Lucie 
The Little Green Wagon
www.thelittlegreenwagon.com

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