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Make this: Hand-Painted Napkins

March 15, 2013





We’re cloth napkin people. Not like fancy schmancy or anything, but we do take our cloth napkiness serious. We have sets for different uses– random, mismatched ones for on-the-go, daily home use ones that are capable of matching but not required to, and a couple “top shelf” sets for dinner parties or holidays. I prefer them over paper for a few reasons: 1. they’re friendlier to the environment 2. they’re less expensive in the long run and 3. they feel nicer and look better, don’t you agree?

I’ve been seeing so many beautiful printed napkins at West Elm, Anthropologie and a few of my other obsessive window shopping spots so I was inspired to make my own. I discovered a great deal on cotton napkins in tons of pretty colors at Cost Plus World Market (which I’m also obsessed with). Making these couldn’t be more simple. Pick a paint, grab a brush, create a repeating pattern. That’s it! Now you have an awesome custom set of dinner napkins. Yay! -xo

The supplies are basic: cloth napkins, paint, brushes and round sponges, (optional: fabric medium- makes acrylic paint soft for fabric use)


Freehand simple patterns using lines and dots. You really don’t have to be a fancy painter or illustrator to achieve a fun pattern, just pick a shape you can draw and repeat, repeat, repeat! Give your napkins a wash before use. Voila! Custom napkins.


TIP: keep your brush dry and use as little paint as possible. Acrylic dries hard on fabric so dry strokes are best. The paint will soften up with each wash cycle. 

7 Comments leave one →
  1. March 18, 2013 9:17 am

    I love these napkins! So cute! What a simple idea too!

    • love and cupcakes permalink*
      March 22, 2013 10:47 pm

      Thank you so much Liz. I’m glad you like them :)

  2. Lesilee permalink
    March 19, 2013 12:58 pm

    I think I’ll make some!

    • love and cupcakes permalink*
      March 22, 2013 10:47 pm


      Great! Have fun making your napkins!

  3. April 11, 2013 1:22 am

    Love these :)

  4. May 25, 2013 3:55 am

    These are lovely, so simple but so smart! Thank you, will definitely be trying this!

    • love and cupcakes permalink*
      May 28, 2013 8:51 am

      Thanks so much! I loved this project :)

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