Easy Shibori Napkins
Shibori is a Japanese dyeing method that includes folding, twisting or bunching and binding cloth, then dyeing it in indigo. We’ve created a similar effect by using easy, pre-made dye bottles from our local craft store to create one-of-a-kind napkins.
- Pre-washed cotton or linen fabric measuring about 18” x 18” per napkin (5 yards of fabric yields around 20 napkins)
- Cardboard to cut into triangle shapes
- Pre-packaged powder tie-dye mixing bottle
- Twine and rubber bands
- Plastic wrap
- Newspaper or trash bags to protect your surfaces
- Large mixing bowl
- Pre-wash fabric and then cut to 18” x 18.”
- Measure and cut out 3” x 3” cardboard triangles. Each napkin will need two cardboard triangles. Note: There are many more patterns you can create by searching for different Shibori patterns online.
- Take fabric and fold in half three times to get a long rectangle shape.
- To fold, create a triangle shape on one end of the napkin. Fold that triangle underneath to create a flat edge. Fold under and back again. Continue folding under until you get to the end of your fabric, making a triangle accordion.
- Place cardboard triangles on either side of the fabric, like a sandwich, and secure with several rubber bands. Then tie twine tightly around the sandwiched cardboard.
- Run your bound pieces of fabric under water – don’t soak completely, just wet enough for dye to absorb all the way through. Wring out water from bundle if needed.
- Prepare dye bottle according to package instructions.
- Take dye bottle and soak bound napkins in dye over a protected mixing bowl (kitchen gloves may come in handy to keep hands clean). For a more defined pattern, make sure to soak edges thoroughly so no white shows at all.
- Wrap each cardboard-bound napkin in plastic wrap and let sit overnight to let dye take hold. Then unwrap and rinse in cold water until water runs clear.
- Dry and enjoy your handiwork at your next dinner party!
Bre Graziano is the Social Media and PR Manager for MOPS. In addition, she’s the founder of a magazine called Fellow and co-owns an event-planning business. She is a pastor’s wife, new mama and musician. Most days you can find her tearing through the kitchen creating new recipes or planning her next party with friends.