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Thread: Festive Napkins, Centerpieces, Etc

  1. #1
    practical experience, FTW Ken's Avatar
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    Festive Napkins, Centerpieces, Etc

    ... had some napkins left over from last holiday season. A lot, actually, as several guests I'd invited didn't show. Figured I might as well make use of them. Wouldn't think it'd make a difference, but eating with a festive napkin by my plate livened things up. (My bland entrees need all the help they can get.) Was wondering if anyone else here spruces up their platter with accessories like decorative napkins and the like and whether they feel it makes a difference in their dining experience?

  2. #2
    The moving hand, having writ... AW Moderator Maryn's Avatar
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    We're big on cloth napkins, especially when we have a really simple meal like grilled cheese sandwiches or chili.

    Our dining room table is larger than we need most of the time, since most nights it's just my husband and me. Sometimes one guest joins us. We've gotten in the habit of eating in front of the TV more often than we should.

    But at least three nights a week, often more, we make a little effort. I clear the debris off the end of the table where we eat, swap out the placemats for clean ones, and set the places with cloth napkins, and light a couple of candles, and the atmosphere and ambiance is totally upgraded.

    Only down side is it makes me want to open a bottle of wine. I can't do that every night.

    Or can I?

    Maryn, pondering
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  3. #3
    practical experience, FTW Ken's Avatar
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    ... that's neat. Never considered placemats. I'm going to look into that. It'd be a neat addition. An embroidered one with a nature scene would be nifty! :-)

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    storm central stormie's Avatar
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    I've had napkins, etc, left over too, from holidays and celebrations. I don't use them for everynight use. I'm cheap that way. And just getting the food on the table--hot--takes all my concentration!

    If you do any baking, why not line a container with the napkins (and a bit of wax paper) and put one on top when/if you give the food as gifts?

  5. #5
    The moving hand, having writ... AW Moderator Maryn's Avatar
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    That's a nice idea, too, stormie! If you have any baked goods you care to pass along, you know who's always hungry, right?

    I don't really find cloth napkins much of a bother. I have a fair number I bought, but these days I make my own. Cutting the fabric, pinning the hems, and basting them in place keeps me from snacking in front of the TV, sometimes.

    Maryn, who doesn't sew much these days that isn't square
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  6. #6
    the original blond bombshell MaryMumsy's Avatar
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    Ya'll use napkins? We usually just use a piece of paper towel.

    MM
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  7. #7
    storm central stormie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaryMumsy View Post
    Ya'll use napkins? We usually just use a piece of paper towel.

    MM
    Not a bad idea! My younger son is a messy eater, no matter how hard he tries. A paper towel as a placemat would be good. Then he can wipe his face and arms and the table and the floor afterward. (I'm serious!)

  8. #8
    ~~~~*~~~~ backslashbaby's Avatar
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    I do like it better! I'm usually so practical that I couldn't care less about certain luxuries, so it's a bit odd. I think it reminds me of vacation, or of being a guest at someone else's house

    I have a thing about little outdoor cafe tables, for instance. I love, love, love sitting at them and drinking coffee. So I just made a garden area with one! I like watching the wildlife every bit as much as people-watching in a cafe, so it makes sense, no? I chose table decorations that make me feel like I'm in France, because I love that. It's crazy how happy that all makes me
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  9. #9
    practical experience, FTW Ken's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by backslashbaby View Post
    I do like it better! I'm usually so practical that I couldn't care less about certain luxuries, so it's a bit odd. I think it reminds me of vacation, or of being a guest at someone else's house

    I have a thing about little outdoor cafe tables, for instance. I love, love, love sitting at them and drinking coffee. So I just made a garden area with one! I like watching the wildlife every bit as much as people-watching in a cafe, so it makes sense, no? I chose table decorations that make me feel like I'm in France, because I love that. It's crazy how happy that all makes me
    ... sounds really neat. Not crazy at all. If I ever do that I'll also set a small table for the squirrels and birds. Maybe they'll even join me at mine. Critters are funny. They're usually shy. But once in awhile they turn friendly and come right up to you as if you were their pal :-)

  10. #10
    Heckuva good sport frimble3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stormie View Post
    Not a bad idea! My younger son is a messy eater, no matter how hard he tries. A paper towel as a placemat would be good. Then he can wipe his face and arms and the table and the floor afterward. (I'm serious!)
    Equally serious: around Christmas (or right after: stock up with stuff on sale for next year) the stores have cheap, thin terry-cloth towels with Christmassy patterns. Ideal as placemat/napkins. Absorbent for the 'food on the floor and fingers' crowd.
    And, unlike the fancy quilted ones, easy to wash and no big loss if they're too stained to reuse. It would seem a shame to have gravy stains all over a nice piece of hand-work.
    Admittedly, plain ol' hose-it-off plastic has it's place, but it's not really dressy.

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