Wednesday, November 07, 2012

sweet november: a pretty place setting

Good evening friends! I apologize for my lackadaisical posting regarding sweet november. I allowed myself to be waylaid by the election, hot weather and a new camera. Oh my goodness! My new camera has me swooning all about the tiny and much cluttered casa. Today's project should have been posted on Sunday but I did not actually do more than visualize it in my head and on paper. This idea came to me late one night back in 2010 a day or so after Thanksgiving and then last year I was too busy to get to it but this year I was prompted to remember it when I crunched, crunched, crunched across the parking lot at work and realized there were acorns everywhere! 

My original idea involved a much plumper acorn and the use of vintage clip-on earrings. Sadly, I no longer have a pretty stash of clip on earrings and so had to make do with what I could discover in one of my many metal drawers of wonders. 

To make the cloth napkins all you need is about a yard of a plain fabric. I picked up a remnant at my local fabric store of a sturdy woven muslin. It is coarser than a soft cotton but not as coarse as canvas. Sturdy and simple, perfect for painting. I am a lazy crafter, I admit it. I am horrible at measuring and making things neat. If I were gifting these, there would definitely be measurements involved. Instead, I folded my fabric in half and ironed it to create a crease for simpler cutting. I cut along the crease creating two long panels of fabric and then measured out along one edge about 16" then cut again to create an almost-square. Using that piece as a template I cut three more so that I could have four napkins. My piece was a remnant so you may be able to get six out of yard, it all depends on how you measure and cut.
Bring your pieces to your sewing machine and stitch all the way around using a short stitch. I would guess that I stitched about half of an inch in from my edges. Make sure to back stitch. This is my lazy way of making sure the fabric does not unravel with use. It will still get a bit ragged but not too much and I don't have to hem the edges (remember, I am an admittedly lazy crafter).
Next, tape off two edges opposite each other. You may wish to measure for an even edge but you can also trim your edges once the paint will be trimming anyway to remove the thready bits. Paint your exposed edges but do not go over your tape. I used blue painter's tape but you can use masking tape if that is all you have on hand. For the paint I used an all purpose craft paint in happy metallic hues. The paint is a Martha Stewart Brand. Once the paint dries, gently remove the tape and trim all the way around the perimeter of the napkin. To fancy these up a bit more you can paint all four edges, front and back. 
Okay, so to create the napkin rings I collected a handful of acorns from the parking lot at work and set them aside in a container for a few days to see if any little critters had moved in. Next, I gathered up the pretty vintage jewelry bits I could find and grabbed a hot glue gun. While the glue was cooling on the bedazzled acorns, I pulled out a few twisty flower dealios I had recently picked up from Michael's with a coupon and gave them a couple of dabs of metallic paint. 
Each flower dealio had three sections and so I pulled them apart into two sections and twisted them back together, end to end. I plopped a bit of hot glue to the pile of now painted metallic bits and plopped a bedazzled acorn atop that.
 After rolling up the napkins, all you need to do is wrap and twist the napkin holders around the napkins and yer set!  I am so very pleased with the way the napkin holders came out. So pleased! I did a happy dance and giggled to myself  probably a bit more than I should have but I couldn't  help it, don't you love it when an idea looks better than you imagined? 
I hope this encourages you to  rummage around to see what you have on hand to create all sorts of happy homey crafts! 


  1. So glad someone pinned these! My aunt gave me a bunch of vintage Christmas pins! Hello napkin rings! You did a beautiful job. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Anonymous6:16 PM

    these are so darling!
    i want to live in that creative head of yours!
    shabby nee