Thursday, October 18, 2012

Spruce up your lunchbox with cloth napkins

I'm trying to make as many handmade gifts as I can for the holidays this year, and for Starboy's friends' birthdays. 

People really don't want more toys—especially here in SoCal where a good closet and storage is hard to find—but nearly everyone has some snack and lunch time away from home. Starboy loves his cloth napkins, and the order of setting up a lunch table in the "right" way.

I made a napkin set for Starboy's pal Mary Jane, and there are a few more of you out there who may be getting some as well. Sorry for the spoiler.

Here's Mary Jane's set in action. She's thrilled!

I love mismatching the napkin and the placemats. Or maybe it's mix-n-matching. These are so fun to make!

The placemats are double-sided, to offer more choices. A small set is at least two napkins and a placemat, though one lucky best friend is getting a week's worth of napkins and placemats for an early Christmas gift. Teachers always can use a little pep, especially when the excitement of the new school year is waning into the fear of the chaos of the holiday season and end-of-marking period.

If schools would just give teachers a nice, free lunch every day, it would buy a boatload of goodwill, even with the crappy pay. But that's maybe a topic for another post. Imagine how nice it could be with cloth napkins and placemats!

The napkins are roughly 15" square—mostly because that was the closest size template I could find to a 17" napkin, which I preferred. But since these are designed for kids' lunch pails, the smaller size actually is an advantage.

The napkins are simply a rolled hem; each one took about four minutes to stitch. The placemats are of varying sizes, and are sewn like a bag, with right sides together, then turned inside out and topstitched. They are smaller than a regular placemat since they are designed for a school or break room lunch table that is shared with others, or for any lunch on the go.

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