Easy to Sew Linen Napkins

Easy Sewing Tutorial - How to make no hem linen napkins | The Chilly Dog The first time I remember using cloth napkins (besides at a restaurant) was at my mother in law’s dinner table, way back, before she was my mother in law. Not only is it more environmentally friendly than using disposable napkins or paper towels, it’s also just a nice finishing touch that makes your meal feel more special.

Of course you can purchase cloth napkins from the store, but they are also surprisingly simple to make.

I like to use linen because it has such a rich texture. You can see how the threads are woven together. It’s perfect for making napkins that don’t have a hemmed edge.

Stitching near the cut edges then washing the material causes it to fray, but in a good way.


  • 2 1/2 yds linen (makes 8 napkins)
  • cutting and sewing supplies
  • water soluble fabric pen (optional)


Wash, dry and press your fabric

Cut eight, 20 inch squares from the linen. (I used my cutting mat and a rotary cutter.)

I marked the corners of each napkin, 1/2 inch from the edge, with a water soluble fabric pen. You don’t have to do this, but it makes it easier to know exactly where to turn your fabric when you are sewing.

Stitch around each napkin, 1/2 inch from the edge. I used a feathering stitch just to make things look a little fancier, but a straight stitch, like a triple stretch stitch, would work as well.

Wash and dry your napkins. Don’t panic if the frayed edges are all tangled up. Carefully cut out any large knots of string.

Lay each napkin out flat. Trim any long threads so they are even with the frayed edge.

You may have to do a little trimming after the first couple washings, but eventually, the fraying will stop.

Press and enjoy your cloth napkins at the holiday table or just the dinner table!

Drop by on Thanksgiving and I'll show you a couple fancy napkin folds to impress your guests!

Easy Sewing Tutorial - How to make no hem linen napkins | The Chilly Dog

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The Chilly Dog: Easy to Sew Linen Napkins
Easy to Sew Linen Napkins
Easy to Sew Linen Napkins: Just cut and sew, no hemming required. They are a simply elegant finishing touch for your holiday table or everyday dining.
The Chilly Dog
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