Pinterest challenge: Linen napkins

If you know me, you know I have a Pinterest habit. (And not like the good kind of habit, more like the gotta-get-my-fix-right-now kind.) So when Sherry over at Young House Love announced the fall Pinterest Challenge, I knew I had to bite.

The deal is that you take one of your pins and make it your own. Depending on how ambitious you are, and the kinds of things you pin, this could mean a world of different projects. But for me, it meant linen napkins. I'm going to two different weddings within the next two weeks, and I need some physical heft to spice up the checks we're sending. And this is a simple (read: cheap) project.

Here's my Pinspiration. (Please ignore the poor quality of the picture. It's all I have to work with...)

I'd had my eye on these for a while now. The color is versatile, and the stripe is classic. Not much to not love in my book. Of course, I had a few ideas of my own to spice things up. I knew my bride was using whites and greens in her kitchen set, so I thought a warm brown would be more practical than grey. And I thought something slightly more rustic would work better for her stoneware collection.

With that in mind, I went down the street to a magical place called Fabric Row, which is every bit as fantastic as it sounds. If you're envisioning a playland of fabric, yarn and sewing shops, you're pretty much right on the money. I hit up my go-to store, where there's an entire aisle of linens, and it wasn't long until I found the right one. It has the perfect weight, texture and color to serve as napkins in my friend's house. I grabbed a yard, and got to work on my four napkins.

If you want to make your own, here's what you've got to do:

First, wash, dry and iron that fabric. I know it seems tedious, but it's clutch.
Next, cut out four 20-inch squares.  Make sure the cuts are as even as you can get them, because you aren't doing much more for the shape.

After that, run a stitch about 1/4-inch from the edge of the napkin, all the way around the edges. Make sure you don't go past that 1/4-inch allowance though, or else you'll make it very difficult for yourself when it comes time to fray.

Then, working from the outside in, start pulling at loose strings. This will give you a very rustic look, and it'll hide any imperfections in your cut. The stitching you did in the last step will keep the napkin from fully unraveling, so you don't have to worry about going too crazy.

Repeat three more times, and wrap with a bow.

That, my friends, is that.


  1. Found you through Craft Gossip and I love these! Pinning right away and will be making for Thanksgiving. Thanks so much!!

  2. @Kim Thanks, Kim! I'm glad you like them. Send me a photo when you finish yours, and I'll put it up/link to you!

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