Looking for a way to add a personal and elegant touch to your table but want an easy and cheap idea? These easy DIY napkin rings made from lace are pretty and a fast and easy DIY.
I love entertaining, receiving guests, making them feel welcome, and doing that bit of extra effort. At the same time, I am a simple gal, I don’t own or desire ‘Sunday dishes’, I don’t have cabinets full of seasonal dishware and guests eat at our kitchen table because we don’t have a dining room.
When I set the table for guests (or sometimes just for us) my go-to table decorations are fresh flowers, some candlelight, and a personal touch here and there. Using cloth napkins with homemade napkin rings is just that perfect little extra that I love when I do a proper table setting.
The other day I made DIY napkin rings from ribbon. But not just any ribbon I used some remnants of lace ribbon. It was an easy craft project that turned out really cute. The napkin rings have already been used in two dinner parties and they are looking good and holding up strong.
My lace napkin rings are hardened and stiff and keep their shape when used. They are not just a piece of lace tied around the napkin, they are proper rings. These will last and can be used over and over.
Before we dive into my super simple tutorial for making these ribbon napkin rings let me tell you that you can find lots more home decorating ideas at the end of this post. The Thrifty Style Team has once more been busy coming up with DIY home decor ideas that are inexpensive and pretty. This month’s theme is summer decorating.
How to Make Napkin Rings with Ribbon
I want to let you know that it is really easy to make them, and rather cheap too.
All you need is a piece of wide ribbon (I used a lace ribbon), some patience, and something to stiffen the fabric. Ribbon and fabric stiffener can be found at craft stores, the patience you’ll have to conjure up yourself.
Step 1: Choose your ribbon
I think these napkin rings look best with a wide ribbon. Something about the width of a regular store-bought napkin ring. You can use any kind of ribbon but I think using lace ribbon just makes your rings a bit fancier and more elegant. These lace napkin rings are a perfect idea for a rustic wedding party.
Step 2: Cut your ribbon
The average diameter of a napkin ring is 1.5 inches. For six napkin rings, you will need 10 inches of ribbon (9 for the napkin rings plus a bit extra for the overlap).
I chose this bit of vintage lace ribbon. I measured how much fabric I needed per ring and then I simply cut through the lace, aiming for the best spot in the design.
Step 3: Assemble the napkin ring.
I hand-stitched the seam. That was truly easy, no difficult sewing stitches needed.
It is hard to make out, I know. But I just winged it with my needle and thread, using stitches and loops and little knots. Just go slow, try to follow the pattern as best as you can. If your thread color matches your fabric the stitches will be almost invisible.
Here you can see them sewn into a little tube. They already can stand, more or less, but they are not stiff yet.
Step 4. Stiffen your ribbon napkin rings.
To stiffen and harden the fabric napkin rings you have to use a fabric stiffener.
I used sugar. Yep, I didn’t have any real fabric stiffener, and besides that stuff is expensive and I was aiming for a free project here. I happened to have a kilo of very old sugar that had become moist and was now hard as a rock. It’s probably still edible but I’d rather not find out, I’ll just craft with it.
To stiffen fabric, lace, or doilies with sugar, just dissolve the sugar in hot water, about half a cup of sugar for one cup of water. Heat the water and stir until all the sugar has dissolved and the water is clear again. Turn off the heat and submerge and soak your rings. Fish them out again with a fork.
Step 5. Shape your napkin rings.
To make sure that the wet, sugar-water-soaked lace rings would harden into proper napkin rings I let them dry over a mold. Most cardboard tubes would work for this. I used a paper towel tube, empty toilet paper rolls would work too.
I prepared a paper roll with some plastic wrap and just slid the rings over it. While the rings are still wet, you have the opportunity to make any adjustments. If your ribbon has a pattern this is the time to make sure that the pattern is nice and straight and that all the edges are the way they are supposed to be.
Step 6. Wait for the napkin rings to dry and become ready for use.
This step is the easiest and the hardest. You only need patience and to let time do its thing. Let your napkin rings dry fully on the mold and then carefully remove them from the tube.
Let them dry some more if you have used sugar water as your stiffener. When you use sugar water as your stiffening agent things will be sticky at first but after a while, they will lose their stickiness and they are ready to be used.
That’s it really! Your ribbon napkin rings are ready to shine at your next dinner party.
More Inexpensive Home Decorating Ideas (with a Summer Flair)
Please remember to visit my friends from the Thrifty Style Team, who have all come up with original ideas for decorating your home on a budget. And I think many of them had summer decorating on their minds.
Redhead Can Decorate – Milk Glass Fruit & Cheese Appetizer Tower
Our Crafty Mom – Bicycle Tire Sunflower Wreath
I Should Be Mopping the Floor – DIY Bulletin Board with Nailhead Trim
The How to Home – Shabby Chic Decoupage Plant Pot
DIY Beautify – Update Older Exterior Windows with Spray Paint
2 Bees in a Pod – Antique French Hat Boxes
Postcards From the Ridge – How to Decorate on a Budget
The Tattered Pew – How to Create a Simple Hat Wall with Hooks
Cottage on Bunker Hill – How to Press Flowers in the Microwave
Vinyet Etc. – Transform a Vintage Frame into an Antique Mirror
Amy Sadler Designs – How to Paint Flower Pots for the Porch
Songbird – How to Make Lace Napkin Rings Tutorial
Making Napkin Rings with Ribbon
I hope you liked my lace napkin rings and will let me know if you will try this easy craft project yourself. I’d love to see and share your creativity so please make sure you tag me when you share your craftiness.
Have fun DIY Decorating!
PS How many times can one person type napking instead of napkin? A lot of times, let me tell you!!
Marianne Songbird is the founder of Songbird, where she hopes to inspire everyone to create a home they love, one DIY project at a time. She shares anything from craft ideas to home decor inspiration and from DIY projects to decorating hacks. Originally from the Netherlands Marianne and her husband Lex are currently renovating a 250-year-old farmhouse in Germany.