About a year ago, I sewed up a bunch of cute cloth napkins to add to our meagre collection and help us stop using paper napkins at home for once and for all. The kids helped me pick out a bunch of cute cotton fabrics with all sorts of patterns and colours, and then I got to work making them. Making your own cloth napkins is a simple but time-consuming process, especially if you sew like me and just sort of bend the rules and don’t worry too much about straight lines and perfect seams. They are, after all, just napkins. We made two different sizes of napkins. The small breakfast napkins measure roughly 12×12 inches and is the perfect size for tucking inside a lunchbox or grabbing a muffin, and the larger dinner napkins are roughly 18×18 inches and just the right size for covering your lap. We bought the fabric in fat quarters, and that was perfect for making two of each design. Of course, with only two of each design, sometimes one or the other of the pair is in the laundry hamper, so it is a good thing that we purchased sets of fabric that (mostly) coordinate with each other.
About a month later, we were out shopping and we found a display of fat quarters, and of course the kids had to pick through them. And of course fall in love with a bright turquoise-and-cupcake novelty print. And of course add a fat quarter of it to our basket. And beg and plead to have it turned into napkins. They did, and I did, and they love them.
Of course, what nobody tells you about cloth napkins is that, once they’ve been washed and hung on the line to dry, you’ll want to iron them before you dare set them out for special guests–and shouldn’t you treat your family just as well as (if not better than) your very special guests? So, we do a lot of ironing of napkins around here. I suppose it was inevitable that brave Miss B would decide it was time she learned how to iron things, and equally inevitable that the first thing she chose to iron was one of the much coveted cupcake napkins.