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26 Neat Ways To Fold Your Napkins

  |   By Bailey Spagat

Dress your tables with uniquely folded napkins that match your decor and colour scheme. Fold your serviettes to look like tuxedos and put a smile on your guests' faces, or tie printed napkins in knots for a refined touch.

You and your caterer have a host of options at your disposal—who knew there were so many cool ways to use a piece of fabric? The one you choose could define your tablescape and evoke all the right feels when you look at your wedding album in years to come.

No.
01

Cute collared shirts

Photo courtesy Glamour Wise

Does the groom have a habit of wearing golfer shirts? This napkin style could reflect a running joke about their choice of clothing, or you could alternate the collared shirt napkin with something more feminine for a memorable overall look.

No.
02

Bejewelled cluster

Photo courtesy Steven and Chris

How about this lily pad napkin fold? There are a few steps to it, but once you've completed half a dozen, you'll feel like a pro. With lily pad napkins, you can 'float' wedding favours, florals, or whatever theme-related item you'd like in the middle, and your photographer will be all over the aerial view.

No.
03

Plate-re d'

Photo courtesy Apartment Therapy

Napkins make an event feel formal, and this style emphasizes the fancy factor. Make your maître d' with a simple white folded napkin and a black bowtie for flair. It might have your guests sitting a little straighter and minding their Ps and Qs, which bodes well while eating.

No.
04

Double-duty menu holder

Photo courtesy Wild Flower Linens

Fold your napkin to make the perfect little slot for your menu. Notice the colours here—there's symmetry. The plate, napkin, and flower go together with their toasted fall palette, and the tablecloth perfectly matches the menu trim.

The white on the menu stands out against the other shades, drawing attention to the important information.

No.
05

Sweet bunny ears

Photo courtesy Clever Parties Blog

Getting married around Easter? Why not fold your wedding napkins to reflect the occasion? These bunny ears have height going for them, and Easter eggs are thrown in the mix for additional whimsy. You can carry the pastel palette through to other decorative accents.

No.
06

Floral protector

Photo courtesy Wedding Ideas Shop

This silvery grey napkin with polka dots makes such a cute protective pocket for a clutch of pink flowers. The colours are complementary, and the rest of your theme can reflect a fresh floral springtime bent.

Seen in this slideshow.

No.
07

Three-stripe bundle

Photo courtesy Napkin Folding Secrets

You can do origami-adjacent folds to create this little bundle of blue. The stripes are Adidas-like, and the shape looks like a tie. Again, there's a practical element, and the napkin neatly contains the cutlery rather than having the knife, fork, and spoon off to the sides.

No.
08

A classic chevron

Photo courtesy Napkin Folding Secrets 

Now, this is more of a classic chevron shape. We like the proportions and the fact that there are only two visible layers of the diamond. It's simple but sophisticated, and the neutral colour is fab too.

No.
09

Festive fans

Photo courtesy of Squidoo

The standing fan napkin fold looks great here in a vibrant burgundy shade. You could place a slight variation of the fan in goblets, or use a napkin ring for the base and have the fan lie down on the plate.

No.
10

Pretty parcels

Photo courtesy of Weddings by Grace and Mona

We adore this idea. The napkin's been folded around the menu and cuffed, so you see the deeper tangerine shade on the other side, which creates visual interest. Gold braided cord is a perfect accent; consider choosing a shade that matches the bride's jewelry matches the bride.

No.
11

A dinner robe

Photo courtesy of The Fun Times Guide

No.
12

Tux and tails

Photo courtesy of Videojug

This tuxedo, complete with shirt and bowtie, is endearing, and we're partial to the autumnal hue.

No.
13

Plated hearts

Photo courtesy of Videojug

We're true romantics, so this ensemble has our names written all over it. It's a yes to the two halves of the heart and the heart of gold. We'd switch to a real rose if your budget permits it.

No.
14

Roses upon roses

Photo courtesy of Videojug

This lotus-like napkin shape is not too different from the lily pad fold we saw earlier. The rosy napkin's maroon border is a subtle detail that adds necessary aesthetic complexity. And the rose contained in a glass bowl at the center is the pièce de résistance.

A rosy scent wafting up would round off the experience.

No.
15

Doublet darling

Photo courtesy of Videojug

Can't get enough of these tuxes? Do two of them for twice as much playfulness and double the injection of colour.

No.
16

Tall and tidy

Photo courtesy of Videojug

When a napkin fold resembles an imminent warm hug from a flower-bearing creature that could be straight out of Star Wars, it must be doing something right. There's height here too, which is rarely a bad thing.

No.
17

A simple clasp

Photo courtesy Holly Tripp Event Design

Sometimes, the easy options are the best options. We love this tastefully gathered cloth napkin and its metallic clasp. From the underplate to the glassware, the colours here work together like a burnt orange symphony.

Seen in this slideshow.

No.
18

Rustic wrap

Photo courtesy The Party Dress

Using natural materials, add a chic farmhouse-style accent to the classic white napkin. For example, opt for burlap with or without lace, bamboo or wooden rings, or jute twine.

The pop of green from the sprig of rosemary is a welcome addition, and the neutral underplate adds pizzazz while tying in with the wrap.

No.
19

Matching roses

Photo courtesy of Stone Gable

We give this innovative rosy situation two wholehearted thumbs up. The faux napkin rose is an identical hue to the real one, and isn't folded haphazardly. There's also synergy between the Grecian blue glass container and the blue serving ware.

No.
20

Stacking hearts

Photo courtesy of Delish

Whether you're getting married on Valentine's day or not, this heart shape puts the love in lovely.

No.
21

Plumes for the plate

Photo courtesy Celebrations Party Rentals

Let the peacock inspire your decor with a fan shape or its ever-popular feather with iridescent eye and wispy fringe. We love the cool palette on peacock plumage, and the napkin here forms a minty green pocket, offset by teal crushed taffeta.

No.
22

Envelope your silverware

Photo courtesy of Cut Out and Keep

Envelop your silverware with this napkin fold. It's almost like the cutlery was mailed to the venue and opened up just for your guest.

The style choices here seem to also be inspired by the wild with peacock colours and leopard print plates in an office meets outdoors look—it's confusing, but we don't hate it.

No.
23

Beautiful silk bud

Photo courtesy of The China Closet

This rose is about to bloom, folks, just like this marriage is about to take off. Heavy-handed metaphor aside, we like this petite napkin fold—it doesn't seem old-fashioned, nor does it overwhelm the tablescape.

And, of course, it would tie together with roses in your floral centrepieces and arrangements, or the bride's bouquet.

No.
24

Tempting twist

Photo courtesy Egg and Soldier

When life gives you lemons, make bold and beautifully zesty napkin folds. This display isn't shy or afraid to take up space, and there's lots of personality packed into the swirling mass.

No.
25

Fun flowers

Photo courtesy of My Trips and Races

Are you a kid at heart with a childlike sense of wonder and appreciation for the quirky? This origami poinsettia is for the artsy and unconventional among us.

No.
26

Fan the flames

Photo courtesy of Ulterior Epicure

Does this fan look a bit like a turkey? Sure, it does. But Thanksgiving turkeys are epic, and so is this napkin fold.

This article was originally published on Dec 12, 2011
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