Thursday, March 11, 2010

Saving money using napkins

I have been collecting napkins for the past couple of years because I wanted to save money on paper napkins. I got this idea from a book called the Tightwad Gazette. I purchase my cloth napkins for .10-.25 each. Most recently I purchased 10 napkins for .10 each at a local thrift store.
If you are trying to save money you probably want to watch a couple of things.
  1. Your per napkin cost. You really want to try to stay under .25 as much as possible. You could easily sew these with scraps, but due to my schedule my sewing time is limited so I choose not to. If you did sew them using a $1.50 yard fabric I would think you could get about 9 10"x10" for about .18 each or so.
  2. You may not want to start washing a load of napkins, that will add to your bottom line! I wash them with my towels as neither receives fabric softener which often causes an item to become waterproof.
  3. You will probably want to know about how many napkins your family needs to make it through a week. For us it would be at least 35 for just us. We normally have about 3-5 dinner guests each week so about 40 napkins! At .10 a napkin that just $4 or $10 at .25 a napkin.
An unanticipated bonus is that guests are surprised to see real napkins outside of a restaurant. I think the cloth napkins add a little character to our home making it feel comfortable. They really come in handy when we have a tea party and help give it a more formal feel for the invited guests human and teddy bear. Additionally, since I have such a variety of napkins the kids take great joy in giving everyone just the right napkin...purple for Ms. Julie, blue for Daddy, Red for Mama & pink for the sisters! Thus, we are able to grow and encourage hospitality in the children.
We have really enjoyed the cloth napkins and I think you might enjoy them also.
Rejoicing in savings & hospitality!
PS- Green stuff ( no more paper napkins in the landfill, re-use)


not hallie said...

Great minds think alike ;)
I've slowly been trying to become more green and this is next on my list. I've looked at Target & Walmart and they sale 2 or 4 napkins for $5! Too much!! I'll have to check some thrift stores like you!! I do wish I could sew though...

The Williams Family said...

Great idea to hit the thrift stores! We've been using kitchen washrags and handtowels for napkins for over a year now and it is amazing at how much that has saved us. I do still buy napkins for the boys birthday parties b/c it helps with my clean up since we do parties at home, then those that are left over are slowly used throughout the rest of the year and sometimes even recycled with our paper stuff. I'm excited to hunt for cheap napkins now! Thanks for the great should do a series of great little cheap ideas!

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