Oooh! Fancy Schmancy Dinner Napkins

Fancy Schmancy Cloth Napkins - a free pattern from Shiny Happy World

You know what the perfect project is to practice straight-line sewing on the machine?

Making some fancy schmancy cloth napkins!

You get to practice sewing around the edge with a nice, straight, 1/4 inch seam allowance, and then you get to go around the edge again with a topstitch.

Easy peasy!

So here’s a free pattern for you.

Click here to download

What You’ll Need

  • Two squares of fabric. I use 12-inch squares but you could go a little larger or smaller if you like. The two fabrics can match, can coordinate, or can be  completely random – it’s all up to you. I usually use a print and a solid that I think looks good with it.
  • Matching thread
  • Sewing machine
  • Iron
  • Pins


You read the part about this being good for practicing sewing straight lines, right? This is definitely for beginners.

sewing 1

If you want to get really fancy you can embroider on one of the squares of fabric before you sew them together. Maybe an initial? Or a flower? Or a small beetle? Draw whatever you like right on the fabric and then choose an outline stitch from the embroidery lessons and stitch over your drawing.

We have a big stack of colorful napkins in our house and everyone has their own favorites. This is a great way to use up random bits of favorite fabrics.

Click here to download the pattern

Happy stitching!




  1. Thank you so much for posting this. I’m slowly teaching myself to learn how to sew for real. I had dabbled with sewing n the past but had no idea what I was doing, so I’m looking forward to some real beginner sewing lessons! I cannot wait to make these. I’ve looked over the directions ten times already, and even I think I can handle them!

  2. Thanks Anastacia! I’m so glad the lessons have been helpful to you so far. Please show off what you make! I just set up a Flickr group at where people can post photos of their projects. I love seeing what people make with my patterns!

  3. Thanks Wendi! I am trying extra hard to convert Hubby to cloth napkins for many reasons!

  4. I love them – and my husband does now, too. I think he was a little sceptical at first. He thought the size in this pattern was too small so I made some much bigger and he loves them.

  5. Wendi, I love your blog. I have been embroidering the wrong way all of these years. Your tutorials are wonderful. I have a blog also and I have been doing tutorials. I’m just getting started and I could use some of your tips. It seems to take me forever to do a tutorial and I just do pictures without using the digital videos. Could you tell me any way to make my tutorials easier?
    Charlotte (

  6. Katie SAYS...

    What kind of fabric are you using? Are you using flannel or cotton? I would love to make these but I want to know what kind of fabric to use. I am learning how to sew and this looks like it will be easy to do.

    • wendigratz SAYS...

      I just use regular quilting cotton for mine.

  7. Rebecca Coday SAYS...

    I’ve made these in the past. I like to use fun quilting fabric on one side and some nice, soft flannel on the other. We call them Un-Paper Towels, but Fancy Schmancy Napkins is a much better name!

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