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Self Binding Napkin Tutorial

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Sewing your own napkins can be fun and a great little house warming present or just for fun in your own home.

Great for a green living too.  Since these napkins are double sided they are a little heavier and can wear longer through more washings.

napkin tutorial | patchworkposse #holiday #napkin #diy

Pick fabric that is complimentary to each other.  Because the back comes to the front with the binding it shows up better if it’s got good contrast to the inside fabric.

If you are making them for holiday season, pick fun colors that go along with that– red, green for Christmas, browns/oranges- Fall, orange/black for Halloween…you get the idea.

napkin tutorial | patchworkposse #holiday #napkin #diy

Materials Needed:

1- 14″ X 14″  inside fabric

1- 18″ x 18″ outside fabric -will come to the front

Self Binding Napkin Tutorial~

1)  Fold in half and iron

2)  Fold in half again and iron

3)  Repeat with the larger size

4)  Match up the squares with the the folded crease– the sides will NOT match


5)  Repeat matching the centers on all sides and pin in place


6)  Sew along the sides starting 1/4″ from the corner- sew to to the other side stopping 1/4″ from the edge


7)  When you start the next side, fold the edges over and match them up, start to sew again 1/4″ from the edge


8)  Repeat this with all four sides, leaving a 2 1/2″ opening for turning- the piece will be a little poofy


9)  Fold the edges at the corner to match- there will be a fold at the top


10)  Line up your ruler to the FOLDED edge and draw a straight line from the fold to the end of your stitching


11)  Sew along the drawn line, cut the extra off

12)  Turn right sides out and iron well, pushing the corners out to a miter

13)  Sew along the binding- this will close the opening for turning at the same time


The beauty of this technique is that the fabric from the back comes to the front– giving it a fun interest.



napkin tutorial | patchworkposse #holiday #napkin #diy

This blog post has been converted to an optional PDF that’s optimized for printing. Find more here. The blog post is totally free to read, print, and sew! The PDF tutorial & download for $2 is totally optional.

This is a great way to sew up a baby quilt too– here’s another tutorial for making a self binding baby quilt.

self binding baby quilt | patchworkposse

More Kitchen Sewing Projects~

easy fabric napkins tutorial | patchworkposse #easysewingproject #holiday #freepattern

Easy Fabric Napkins

easy fabric napkin tutorials | patchworkposse #easysewingproject #holiday #napkins

Easy fabric napkins

sewing project for your kitchen time to make it look cute

Sewing projects for your kitchen

Do you make handmade napkins?

20 thoughts on “Self Binding Napkin Tutorial

  1. Kate

    This is brilliant!! Thank you for sharing.

  2. Chris

    Wow! This is so cool! Thank you for sharing how to do

  3. Anne

    We use fabric napkins almost exclusively at our house. Most of ours are nowhere near as pretty as the ones you made. I love the look of the contrast binding and the pretty mitered corners! I’ve got a Craft Gossip post scheduled for this evening that links to your tutorial:

  4. Becky

    Thanks Anne! Those do make it kind of fun– great way to show off awesome fabric too.

  5. Peta

    Great idea & taken a step further could be made into a babies blanket.

  6. lea

    Or place mats; or with heat resistant batting, pot holders. This opens a whole new door for me and my gift giving. I can see table settings with place mats, matching napkins and possibly a hot pad for the middle of the table (for the main course)! What a great and seemingly simple sewing project for a wedding or house warming.

  7. France Nadeau

    That’s an interesting method. I pinned your picture in my sewing board as a reminder to try it. Thank you!

  8. Jennifer | The Deliberate Mom

    These are delightful and what a detailed tutorial you’ve shared.

    Thanks for sharing (and for linking up to the #SHINEbloghop).

    Wishing you a lovely weekend.

  9. Katherines Corner

    lovely tutorial, we only use cloth napkins and I know its time to make a few new ones and recylce the old. Thank you for sharing at the Thursday Favorite Things blog hop. xo

  10. Rach D

    These are so colourful! And you’ve really laid out the steps really well.
    Thanks for sharing on this week’s Inspired By Me Mondays; hope you join us again this week! Rachael @ Diamonds in the Rough

  11. Robin in New Jersey

    I love this idea. Thank you for sharing. I have a pile of fabric waiting to be made into napkins and I will use your tutorial.

  12. Carol

    I love this concept, but I must be missing something in the mitering process. My napkin has an edge that can’t be worked/ironed flat. Sheesh…I have a shallow fabric basket. Help please!

  13. Carol

    OK…I goofed on step 10…line the ruler up on the F O L D…worked so much better!

  14. Stacy

    What a great idea! I’m doing my kitchen in a beautiful shade of green linen with various prints that coordinate, this is a perfect project to add to my collection.
    Thank you so much!

  15. Becky

    Stacy- so glad you found it. Good luck making them. They are perfect for a quick project.

  16. Donna

    This technique is genius!!! Thanks so much for sharing!

  17. Michelle

    For some reason mine won’t lay flat? Any ideas what I’ve done wrong?

  18. Becky

    Michelle- you might want to check out your sizes. I believe they need to be equal — like if back is long on one side than the other, it could cause it to not line up properly. Not sure they have to be square? But the back needs to be larger than the front all the way around the same measurement.
    Example- if you are making the back 2″ larger than the front, then it needs to be 2 inch larger on each side. One side can’t slip and go to 1 1/2 ” and the opposite side take up the extra and become 2 1/2″ see what I’m saying? They need to be equal.
    Check that and see if that might fix it. Good luck!

  19. Rachel Maria

    Thank you for this, I have been sewing forever and I was still mitering the same old ‘hit-and-miss’ difficult way. I’ve put these on my ‘to-do’ list!! I think using flannel for the smaller of the fabric squares…or even terry washcloths!! Would be pretty effective for those chicken or hand held food meals. Also for young ones!!

  20. Jessica

    These worked beautifully! Thank you for sharing.

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