Easy DIY Frayed Edge Linen Napkins

Making your own linen napkins is way easier (and cheaper) than you’d think! I’m about to blow your mind with how easy it is to make these no sew napkins!

DIY Frayed Edge Linen Napkins Cheap and Chic

Every holiday, I’m the first one buying decorative cocktail napkins. The thing is, I hate throwing them away, and I really hate the way the stiff paper of printed napkins feels on my skin. I made these for a recent party and have used them a couple of times since, and I’m now a DIY napkin convert. They’re a great way to elevate your event. Everyone was asking me where I got them! I even went and got fabric to make more for Easter!

DIY Frayed Edge Linen Napkin is Easy!

As with all good rehab projects, I started with a need that turned into an idea, then I headed to the fabric shop (okay, bad projects start that way, too, just stay with me here.) I knew I was looking for a red, pink, or purple, but was willing to go with the flow based on what was available. I found this gorgeous pink color and ended up making 8 HUGE napkins for $17!

DIY Frayed Edge Napkin
The napkins looked gorgeous with the lace runner and vintage dishes at my Galentine’s Day tea party.

The only tools you need for this project are the linen and fabric scissors. Believe me, fabric scissors are necessary. They make a huge difference in being able to get straight lines and smooth cuts.

Here are the steps to get you on your way to making your own frayed edge linen napkins:

  1. Wash and dry your fabric to preshrink it. If you want to skip the prewash, I’m sure you’d be okay just cutting the napkins larger than you normally would to allow for some shrinkage.
  2. Decide how many napkins you want/ can get from your piece of cloth. I did this by folding my fabric and estimating how big I’d want each napkin to be. I do everything based on look, so I’m sure if you wanted to measure, you could get really specific and make lines on your fabric with a fabric pen, but why make it harder than it needs to be?
  3. Cut your fabric! I used the folds to guide how I cut the fabric. It’s easier for me to cut when I’m holding both sides of the fabric and can get the scissors flying smoothly!

    DIY Frayed Edge Napkins Fabric Detail
    Before you get to make a mess!
  4. Then you’re ready for the fun! Pulling out the fabric at the edges to create the pretty frayed look. It can be messy, but that’s half the fun, right? I pulled the fabric around the edges while I watched an episode of Fixer Upper.

    DIY Frayed Edge Linen Napkin How To
    Pulling out the edges. You want to work from the piece on the outermost edge first. Otherwise, the strings can get tangled.
  5. Enjoy your new napkins! Yep, that is it! Wash, cut, pull, done!

DIY Frayed Edge Linen Napkins Easy Entertaining

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Hand Made Stamped Linen Napkins

photo 4 copyI got the idea for making hand stamped napkins because I’ve been seeing a lot of fabrics with geometric patterns lately, and everything I’ve been liking has been out of my budget.

Like any good rehabber, that just means a DIY project is on the horizon.

 

I found this article from Apartment Therapy on how to make the napkins. I got half a yard of linen from the local fabric store. Then I washed the linen to pre-shrink. After that, I got to cutting. The only difference from the tutorial is that I couldn’t get my linen to rip (it was 100% so I don’t know why) so I ended up cutting it and then just fraying the edges myself.

I remembered an article about using fruit and veggie stamps from Parents magazine. I cut a triangle out of a potato and got to working.

The potato stamp with paint.
The potato stamp with paint.

I got two colors of fabric paint and mixed them to the grey that I wanted. Then painted it onto the potato for even distribution. A couple of times, I dropped the brush or the potato or moved it around a bit, so there are imperfections. I think that just adds character.

I wanted to play with the patterns and ended up making all of the napkins different.

The finished napkins (I still need to pull the threads out of one.)
The finished napkins (I still need to pull the threads out of one.)

I think they ended up pretty good, don’t you?

*note: be sure to put something under the fabric you are stamping. You don’t want the paint to bleed through and stain your work surface!