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How to Fold a Napkin

Add a special touch to your dinner table with these napkin folding ideas. You don't need anything fancy to get started—just a few napkins and these easy step-by-step instructions.

Fan Fold | Napkin Bouquet | Place Card Holder | Cutlery Wraps | Napkin Ring Fold | Flower Fold | Diagonal Fold



Napkin Fan Fold

To add some spark to each place setting, try a fan fold. This fold works best with a stiff napkin that can really hold a crease.


Step 1

Lay a square napkin on a flat surface, then fold the two opposite edges in to meet at the center, making a rectangle.

Starting at the short end, fold the napkin into 1-inch accordion pleats, stopping about 4 inches from the opposite end. Make sure the fold of the last pleat is at the bottom edge and all the pleats are underneath.



Step 2

Fold the napkin in half lengthwise so half of the pleats are now on top.



Step 3

Fold the upper left corner down and tuck it behind the center pleat, forming a triangle. Release and let the pleats fan out.



Step 4

Adjust the folds and back triangle as needed so the fan stands upright.




Napkin Bouquet

Bring a burst of color to your table by taking two napkins in different colors and making this napkin bouquet.


Step 1

Layer one napkin on top of the other so that each corner is offset a bit.



Step 2

Grab the napkin in the center and pull up.



Step 3

With the edges pointing up, place napkins in a water goblet and fluff.




Place Card Holder Napkin Fold

This fold is not only functional, but it also adds an elegant touch to your holiday table.


Step 1

Fold a napkin in half twice to make a square and place it on a flat surface with the open corners facing you. Fold up each open corner one at a time, placing each corner about 1-in. from the previous one.



Step 2

Fold up the bottom edge about 1 in. to make a holder for the place card.



Step 3

Turn napkin over and fold napkin in thirds, tucking one corner under the other to hold.



Step 4

Turn napkin over and put place card inside the bottom fold.




Cutlery Wraps

Easily organize silverware for your holiday party with these manageable bundles.


Step 1

Place a set of cutlery diagonally on the napkin, leaving about a third of the napkin showing at the bottom. Fold the bottom corner over the cutlery.



Step 2

Fold the left side of the napkin over the cutlery.



Step 3

Fold the right side of napkin over the cutlery; tuck under.



Step 4

Securely tie the bundle about halfway down with foil garland, raffia or ribbon.




Napkin Ring Fold


Step 1

Place a square cloth napkin wrong side up on a flat surface. Fold in two sides so they overlap and form a rectangle.



Step 2

Fold the upper left corner down to the center of the rectangle's lower edge.



Step 3

Fold the triangle you just made over so that it forms a square.



Step 4

Turn the napkin over; roll two sides into the center to make a tube. Turn the napkin over so the rolled edges are underneath. Slip a napkin ring over the napkin.




Flower Napkin Fold


Step 1

Open a napkin flat. Hold two adjacent corners and fold the napkin in half with the corners slightly askew.



Step 2

Take the center of the fold and pull it through a napkin ring.



Step 3

Insert the stem of a fresh flower through the napkin ring.




Diagonal Napkin Fold


Step 1

Fold a napkin in half twice to form a square with the open corners facing you. Pick up the top open corner and make 1-1/2 inch folds until it reaches the outside corners.



Step 2

Repeat again with the next open corner.



Step 3

Then fold the napkin into thirds with the folds forming a diagonal on the front.