Christmas Table Setup - CV Linens

4 Fun and Fancy Table Napkin Folds to Complete Your Christmas Table Setup

It is that time of the year again when people are excited to shop for the perfect Christmas gifts and wrap them in the most personal and beautiful way for friends and family. From decorating the Christmas tree, baking Christmas cookies, cooking up delicious meals to preparing holiday drinks, everything has to be just right for the most special season of the year.

Besides Christmas trees, one other detail that a lot of us put many attention to is the Christmas dinner table setup. Making a gorgeous and enticing table for the holidays may look and sound overwhelming. Questions like what decorating ideas can I incorporate in the dining room? What colors should I use for table linens, red and green? How do I set a fancy table and add my personal touches into it? These are only some of the most popular concerns during this hectic Holiday season. 

This post, first and foremost, will take-away the misconception that it is difficult to put together a beautiful Christmas table setup for your family and guests. Second, we will show you one of the strongest secrets to putting together a jaw-dropping Christmas table setting with eye-catching holiday napkin folds.  With some simple steps, you can transform a table napkin into adorable designs that will inspire you to take on more holiday crafts and will add to the Christmas cheer.  

With the pandemic hitting us all practically the entire year, a beautiful Christmas table that will feel like you are somewhere, a favorite restaurant or nice hotel, will offer a whole new experience to your loved ones. 

What should you know about napkin folding?

There are a few things that you need to know before heading on to napkin folding. First and foremost, make sure that all napkin linens are ironed. You have an option to starch the fabrics to add stiffness. Stiff napkin fabrics are the most beneficial with styles that require standing up.  Beginners often ask about where the napkins go in a place setting. The answer really depends on your aesthetic preference. You can try to position the napkin anywhere you want, although traditionally, it goes on top of the charger plates

Christmas Napkin Bow Fold with Gold Napkin Ring

If you want to go traditional, the forks go on the left side and the knives and spoons are placed on the right. They are then placed in the order in which you will need them to eat with the last being closest to the place. You can find more about how to set a basic, casual, and formal place setting on our other article.  

With regards to size, most napkins are 20"x20" or 17"x17". For basic napkin folds, the 17"x17" napkins are the most used ones, the 20"x20" are usually for tall napkin folds and those that need pronounced details. 

4 Beautiful & Easy Christmas Napkin Folding Ideas

Gray Polyester Linen Napkin Bow Fold

Bow tie napkins are one of the easiest ones to recreate and can instantly dress up your Christmas table. 

A napkin ring is a beautiful addition to this napkin fold because it can add emphasis to the centerfold. The loops and tails can also be formed effortlessly. Aside from napkin rings, you can also use a ribbon, a small piece of fabric, or rubber bands to secure the center of the bow. 

To fold a bow napkin, you can follow these steps: 


  1. Place the napkin right side down and fold it in half from corner to corner to achieve a triangle shape. 
  2. Fold back the top corner of the napkin where the two edges meet, at least 1/3 of the way down.
  3. Fold over the flat edge of the table napkin until it overlaps the previous fold.
  4. Take each end and fold them upwards.
  5. When the ends overlap slightly creating a smaller triangle, pull and crisscross the end as close as you can to form the shape of a ribbon.
  6. Pinch at the center.
  7. While holding it tightly, slip the napkin through the napkin ring until it is positioned at the center.
  8. Turn it over and adjust the napkin, fluff up the bow, and even out the tails.    
Polyester Linen Napkin in Christmas Tree Fold

The Christmas tree napkin fold technique can help boost the aesthetics of this year’s Holiday setup. This modern but classy and adorable way to fold your napkin is also simple to do.   

Here are the steps to doing the Christmas tree napkin:

  1. Lay the napkin flat right side up and fold it in half. 
  2. Make sure that all the corners of the napkin are properly lined up. 
  3. Fold the napkin in half again. 
  4. Rotate the napkin until the flaps are facing you. 
  5. Fold the corners up one layer at a time. 
  6. Leave at least an inch of space between each fold. 
  7. Flip the napkin over and use the center of the napkin as your guide to fold the outer corner inwards, it needs to be 1/3 of the way in.  
  8. On the other side of the napkin, repeat the step to create a kite shape. 
  9. Flip it back over. 
  10. Use the center of the napkin as a guide and fold the outer corner inwards at least 1/2 of the way in. 
  11. Repeat the step on the other side and create a kite shape. 
  12. Flip it back over.    
  13. Starting from the top, fold each of the layers up and tuck each fold under the previous layer. 
  14. Lay the napkin flat over plates or fluff up so that the napkin can stand upright. 

To complete the Christmas tree look, you can use hot glue to put a small ornament or attach a bow to a popsicle stick and tuck it into the top. 

The Elf Hat’s cuff can be a bit tricky. So, for this one, it is best to use a moderately stiff napkin fabric so that the final hat can stand up without collapsing. You can use polyester linen napkins if you have those. With the Elf Hat fold, precision is not extremely important because any asymmetry can easily be corrected as soon as the cuff is done. 

This napkin fold, frankly, is one of the simplest designs anyone can have for Christmas and, at all times, is an absolute delight to add to the Christmas table decorations. You can choose to add a bow or place a name card into its cuff, especially if you have a special seating arrangement in mind. 

To create an Elf Hat napkin, follow this step by step guide:

    1. Lay the napkin’s flat seams side up and fold it in half. 
    2. On the folded edge, place a finger at the center point and with the other hand, grab a corner and start rolling the napkin slowly to create a cone shape.  
    3. Fold over the opened part of the cone to create a cuffed brim for the hat, and so that it can sit upright on the plate. 

      You can add a bell or pine cone as finishing touches. 

      If there is an Elf Hat, then there is also an Elf Shoe. Elf Shoe napkins are just as adorable and classy as other Christmas napkin decorations and they look gorgeous on charger plates, too.

      Elf Shoe napkin fold style is perfect if there are a lot of children on your guest list. These little-pointed boots look much better in green linen napkins, so it can add a touch of supernatural reference to your Christmas table.     

      Here are the steps to create Elf Shoe napkins:

      1. Get a square napkin and make sure it is laid flat with seams’ side up. 
      2. Fold the napkin in half from bottom to top.  
      3. Fold the napkin again from the top to the bottom and it should create a long, skinny rectangle. 
      4. Find the center of the napkin and fold the sides inward like you would a paper airplane. 
      5. Fold the sides in again and this should create a sharp point at the tip.  
      6. Fold the two halves over one another and position the napkin on its side after. 
      7. Make sure that the open part is facing you. 
      8. Fold the top layer ends up away from you and fold the bottom layer in half. 
      9. Wrap over the top layer before tucking into the folded tip.  
      10. Flip down the top materials to create the boot cuff. This can help stabilize the shoe shape and it also creates a place where you can tuck a name card for your guests.  
      11. You can grab some floral wire and a jingle bell, and you can bend the tip of the toe of the elf boot with a wire and bell inserted in the folds. The wire will help keep the toe bent up. 

        You can also bend the collar down and add some shiny holly or a berry inside the other side pocket. You can even add things on the top if you want more decorations, just be careful of the weight or else, the elf boot napkin won't stand up. 

        No one can guess it only took minutes to fold these napkins...

        Whether you're an amateur napkin-folder or origami mastermind, these tutorials make even the most beautiful folds incredibly super easy. Plus, they will look so intricate, no one will guess they only took you just minutes to learn.  

        Although we tend to give most of our attention to details and decors, with some people going above and beyond, spending "a lot" to decorate every nook and cranny, let us not forget the reason why we push for a beautiful and pleasing atmosphere.  

        Christmas is a way for friends and family to gather, bond, and share. Decors, while they make your friends and family feel special, remember that they are icing on our cakes. Building great memories with the people we value most in our lives should always be the highlight of our holiday cheer.

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        To learn more about trends in table settings and party planning for the rest of the year, be sure to check out the rest of our articles and follow us on Pinterest and Instagram

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