Holiday Napkin Ideas

Napkin folding can be time-consuming, but these terrific ideas are really easy and different. And it won't take all day to do them. See our video for more project tips.

Red-and-White Delight

Using a few basics -- red place mat, white plate, and white cloth napkin folded like an envelope -- you can turn your place setting into a letter to Santa.

Santa Medallion: Download the Santa circle. Print onto white cardstock. Punch a 1-1/4-inch scallop-edge circle from polka-dot paper. Punch a 2-inch scallop-edge circle from red paper. Layer and tape the circles together. Place the medallion on top of the envelope-folded napkin.

Envelope-Style Folded Napkin: Set a cloth napkin diagonally on a flat surface. Fold the bottom point up, aligning it with the top point to form a triangle. Fold the left and right corners in toward the center so the points meet in the center. Fold the left and right sides to meet in the center again. Fold the bottom edge up to the center of the diamond. Fold the top point down, forming the envelope flap.

Mossy Elegance

Set a fairy-tale-worthy table by making a mini thyme wreath with a banner and a wreath-hanger folded napkin.

Mini Thyme Wreath: Cut clippings from a thyme plant. Form clippings into a circle, taping them together with green florist's tape. Download the Happy Holidays banner. Print banner on white cardstock; cut out. Trace the banner shape a bit wider on gold glitter paper; cut out. Tape the Happy Holidays banner on the gold banner, aligning the notched ends. Place the assembled banner over the wreath on a plate, bending the banner slightly so the notched tails drape over the wreath. Place the wreath-hanger folded napkin through the top of the wreath.

Wreath-Hanger Folded Napkin: Place a cloth napkin on a flat surface. Fold the left and right sides to the center, creating a rectangle; press with an iron. Turn the napkin over. Fold the left and right sides to the center, overlapping them. Turn napkin over. Loop the folded napkin through the top of the mini thyme wreath on the plate, tucking napkin ends under the plate.

Tailored Sophisticate

A gray table setting with a pop of deep red sets a modern Christmas table.

Noel Banner: Download the Noel banner. Print onto white cardstock; cut out. On silver glitter paper cut out banner shapes with notched ends a bit larger than the Noel banner. Tape the Noel banner onto the glitter paper banner. Tape the assembled banner onto a piece of narrow red velvet ribbon.

Pouch-Style Folded Napkin: Place a cloth napkin diagonally on a work surface. (Use an oversize napkin so that when it's folded it will be taller than the silverware.) Fold the bottom point up to the top point, creating a triangle. Fold the left corner and then the right corner up to the top, creating a diamond shape. Turn napkin over. Fold the bottom one-third of the napkin upward, and then fold the left and right sides underneath the napkin. This will create the pouch front. Wrap the Noel banner around the napkin, centering the banner on the front of the pouch. Tie the ribbon in back of the napkin. Place silverware in the pouch.

Naturally Chic

A frayed-edge table runner and a woven place mat set the scene for this wintry table. Crafts-store birch logs become candleholders when holes are drilled in their tops for taper candles. Wooden letters glued onto metal-rim tags wrap around the candlesticks to spell festive words.

Merry Christmas Place Card: Download the Merry Christmas tag. Print on white cardstock; cut out. Trace a rectangle slightly wider than the tag onto kraft paper; cut out. Tape the Merry Christmas tag on top of the kraft paper tag. Make a slot in the top of a small crafts-store birch log with a craft saw, sawing at an angle. Insert the assembled place card into the slot.

Tree-Shape Folded Napkin: Place cloth napkin on a work surface. Fold the napkin in half, folding the top edge down to the bottom. Fold in half again, folding the right side to the left edge to make a square. Turn napkin diagonally, so napkin is laid like a diamond, with the open ends pointed toward you. Fold each layer toward the top, leaving about 3/4 inch between each and pressing with an iron. Turn napkin over, holding all layers in place. Bring the right corner up and to the left side (holding all the layers), forming a conelike shape on the right side. Bring the left corner up and to the right (holding all the layers and going on top of the area you just folded to the left). Turn napkin over, then turn it so the layers point down. Fold the lower portion of the top layer upward, forming the pointed treetop. Fold the next layer up, tucking the point into the folded layer above it. Repeat for remaining layers until you have finished the tree shape. Place a birch circle or other item on the treetop.


Wrap a cord with tassel ends around a napkin folded into a rectangle. Add a cedar sprig and a candy cane.


Place a jeweled holiday ornament on a folded napkin. The ornament can double as a party favor.

Ribboned Ornament

A stylish table setting is as simple as tying an elegant ornament around a napkin with sheer ribbon.

See our video for project tips.

1 Comment

  1. Sure wish there were some pic's for the instructions for the tree shaped folded napkin! Great design !!!

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