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When I have people over for dinner for a special occasion like, oh I don’t know…Christmas, I like to add a little something extra to my table decor. Sometimes it’s a lot of something special, but when I just want a quick pop of fancy I like to use Kitchen Papers. They have a little bit of everything, place cards, table runners, place mats, napkins, etc. I get complements every time I use them. Bonus, they’re disposable so you don’t have to worry about spills or stains; heck if any of that happens you can just grab another sheet. I got my Kitchen papers from a few of the specialty shops around town, but if you can’t locate any, they’re also available at Hester & Cook.
A little something from for everyone right? What are you putting on your holiday table?
Images from Hester & Cook.
Category: Things I Love
I realized a few weeks ago my group of friends is now in round two of the wedding cycle. Round one was right after college, all the couples graduated and got hitched. It seemed like there was a wedding every six months, that group has now moved on to babies. But back to round two, these are my friends that were single at the end of college and met someone after relocating. Three weddings within the next year. I am so very happy for them, and so very happy not to be them. I don’t EVER want to plan a wedding again. The budgeting, the balancing and the coordinating, oh god the coordinating! So many stories. All the realization and reminiscing resulted in me clicking around a few of my favorite bookmarked wedding blogs and, of course finding, a DIY that I just had to share.
The inspiration for these gilded napkin rings came from a table-scape designed by Firefly Events. The rings they used were actually bracelets from Anthro, which was an ingenious idea, but with a price tag of $48 a piece a bit expensive. So the design team at Ruffled got creative and traced down golden arrow findings from this Etsy seller, threw in a little elbow grease and ta-da, golden arrow napkin rings for a fraction of the price.
Crafting and saving money?! I think i’m in love.
For as long as I can remember people have always asked me why I buy things like clothing, pillows and curtains when I could simply make them myself. Without fail this question drives me up the wall. Could I make my own curtains? Absolutely. Would it be cost effective? Absolutely not. Buy the time I purchase the materials and factor in the time it will take me to make the item, it will usually end up costing me two or three times what the store price would be. Handmade goods are exponentially more expensive then commercially produced goods. Look at sites like Etsy, if you’re evaluating a purchase based on price alone, you’re much better off going to Amazon. Don’t get me wrong, I truly believe that handmade is better. I plan on making my living creating beautiful limited run items someday, but for everyday goods i’ll pick an hour of TV and snuggle time with the husband over making my own curtains any day.
All that being said, I am a huge fan of making gifts for my loved ones, and with so many of my college friends settling down and setting up house. DIY’s like this one are already being implemented for Christmas and Birthday gifts.
To make the dinner napkins
– For each 20” napkin (a standard size), you’ll need 3/4 of a yard of linen. Depending on the width of the fabric you choose, you may be able to cut two square napkins from this amount of yardage. Since I wanted a different color for each napkin, I only cut one per fabric and saved the leftovers to make a coordinating set of placemats.
– Thread to loosely match each fabric
– Basic sewing supplies, including a point turner and an iron.
To make the confetti:
-1 inch circle punch
-About ten pieces of standard, 8.5” x 11” card stock (I used this because I had it lying around and wanted every napkin to have a different pattern, but you could also fashion a single stencil about of very thin, clear acetate)
-Metallic gold fabric paint
Wash and dry your linen (this is really important as linen shrinks considerably), then press.
Cut linen into 23” squares.
Using your iron, press a 1/2 inch fold into one side of your linen square, then fold an additional 1 inch and press.
Unfold the second (1 inch) fold, leaving the crease. Now, repeat the entire process for the other three sides of the square.
Fold each corner forward so that 1 inch creases line up, as in the photo above.
Now, unfold the corner and fold the entire napkin in half backwards so that the two ends of the crease you just made are lying on top of one another. Pin on either side of this crease. Repeat for the other three corners of your napkin.
Sew a straight stitch over the crease on each corner of your napkin.
Cut off the fabric’s corners approximately 1/2 inch beyond the seam, then cut the tiny squared corners of this leftover area to a 45 degree angle.
Unfold your napkin and press the corners with seams open.
Turn the napkin inside out, using a point turner to push out the corners. Press the edges down along the 1 inch crease all the way around the napkin.
Stitch edges down as close as possible to the inner fold of the napkin.
Press your finished napkin, and repeat for the rest of your set (and once you’re done with all that, pat yourself on the back).
Now, cut your card stock into rectangular pieces (mine varied from 1/2 to 1/3 of each 8.5”x11” piece) and use a circle punch to create an abstract smattering of confetti.
Place stencil as desired on your napkin. Then, using a foam brush, gently apply gold fabric paint to the stencil, working from the outside edge of the circle towards the middle. Make sure that your brush is not over-saturated with paint and that you press the stencil down with your hands around the area where you are working.
Repeat on other areas of the napkin, turning the stencil to keep the pattern random and switching stencils every two to three uses (it will become less reliable as the circles are saturated with paint).
Let dry overnight and then set your lovely table! Happy Spring!
Recently my friend Verhanika addressed a similar issue in her blog post When is it Okay to Spend a Lot of Money? Discussing when and where it is appropriate to spend a little more to ensure the well being of the family unit. It gave me a new perspective on how Andy and I run our household, and I currently manage my work free hours. We may even be employing a weekly cleaning service in the near future.
Images and original tutorial from here.