How to Sew Scalloped Cocktail Napkins & Giveaway!

20 Sep How to Sew Scalloped Cocktail Napkins & Giveaway!

Tis the season! It’s never too early to start ……………🎁

The online sewing community is one of the most generous groups of people on the face of the earth! Members are always willing to share their knowledge, take time for others and lend a helping hand.

When I published the Scalloped Cocktail Napkin post, several readers with embroidering expertise realized I could use some help 😂  THANK YOU!

I took up Becky Thompson’s generous offer of help and the result is a new and improved Scalloped Cocktail Napkin ……… improved technique and easier to construct. Becky, the creator of the blog Power Tools with Threads hosts a YouTube Channel by the same name offering free embroidery tutorials.

Becky emailed a tutorial for me and then we followed up with a video call. Her advice was spot on. So let’s start again……

You Will Need:

  1. Lightweight Woven Fabric such as poplin, linen, quilting cotton, shirting, gingham etc….
  2. Water soluble stabilizer such as  Inspira Aqua Magic or Pellon 541 Wash and Gone
  3. An embroidery machine and hoop
  4. Embroidery thread
  5. Embroidery software
  6. Applique Scissors

TUTORIAL – illustrated in both white linen and cotton plaid

  1. Create your design as I outlined in the Original Tutorial.

2. Save your design as an APPLIQUE in your embroidery software. For those of you who are new to embroidery, an APPLIQUE is produced with a series of stitches in addition to the embroidery stitches.

3. Place your stabilizer in the hoop – no fabric and attach to the machine. I am using Pfaff’s Creative Metal Hoop, but feel free to use a traditional hoop.

4. The first stitch in an appliqué is the Placement Stitch, stitched directly  onto the stabilizer before placing the napkin fabric.

5. When the placement stitch is finished remove the hoop from the machine and place your fabric over the stabilizer and the placement stitch without removing the stabilizer from the hoop.

Reattach to the machine.

6. The next stitch is the Tackdown Stitch. This stitch secures the fabric to the stabilizer.

7. Remove the hoop from the machine but leave the fabric in the hoop. Since I’m using a metal hoop I freed the napkin fabric while keeping the stabilizer secure.

8. Trim around the Tackdown Stitch but not into the stabilizer. This is much easier than trimming around the embroidery stitches after the napkin is finished as I earlier suggested 😉

9. Return the hoop to the machine. The Pfaff Creative Icon stitches two outline stitches before the embroidery starts. Afterwards the embroidery stitching begins automatically. Other machines may not use the same type of outline stitch or might immediately start the Embroidery. The Embroidery is known as the Final Stitch and occurs after the Tackdown.

Below is a photo of the Outline Stitch on the Plaid Napkin. Note how the outer stitch is sewn on the stabilizer.

Final Stitch in progress

10. Once the embroidery is finished remove the hoop from the machine and the fabric from the hoop.

Trim around the design on both sides leaving approximately 1/2″ stabilizer.

11. Soak the napkin in water or soapy water for a few minutes to dissolve the stabilizer.

12. Remove and line dry or place in dryer on the gentle cycle.

13. Press.

The napkins can be programmed with and without the monogram, saving the monogram for later.  If you plan to create the napkin with the monogram or an embroidered image, I recommend using double layers of stabilizer to avoid puckering.

To save monogramming or embroidered images for another time, place the napkins on a smaller hoop with appropriate stabilizer  and embroider.

Becky’s tutorial has made a HUGE difference in the ease and quality of creating these scalloped bordered cocktail napkins. Without the monogram each napkin takes 15 minutes from start to finish and there are no worries about cutting around the border, and no need for Fray Check.


As a long time fan of Mark & Graham, I was once again inspired by their cocktail napkins and greatly enjoyed putting my spin on them. Below are a couple of my inspiration photos.



I am super pleased with the new process and  result.

The finished size is 5 1/2″ x 9 1/2″. The fabric is a lightweight cotton which I bought at Five Eighth Seams in Charleston. I do not see it on the store’s website, but Christmas plaids are plentiful at the moment.

In honor of Becky I’m giving away a set of 10 monogrammed napkins to one winner. To enter, make sure to follow Goodbye Valentino and simply leave a comment.

The winner will be announced on Wednesday, September 23.  In the meantime, follow Becky’s You Tube Channel here.  I’ve certainly joined and know where to go before I start my next project!

Thank you, Becky and good luck, Readers!

PS….. White Top is Grainline Studio’s Lark Tee







  • Melissa LaPointe
    Posted at 07:12h, 20 September Reply

    Lovely and fun to have for a party… some day soon.

  • Gail Cunningham
    Posted at 07:14h, 20 September Reply

    Your napkins are adorable, and thank you for sharing Becky’s You-Tube information; I will look her up. Many thanks for the opportunity to win these napkins. I’m sew ready for the holidays!

  • Betsy Baumgartner
    Posted at 07:14h, 20 September Reply

    Sarah, I’ve followed you for years and always enjoy your posts. Your scalloped napkins are very cute! Thanks for sharing. I’ll also be checking out Becky’s site.

  • Kay Eibl
    Posted at 07:22h, 20 September Reply

    Wonderful work, Sarah! Thank you for sharing the tutorial and Becky’s site. The napkins are amazing and you are a model of always learning and growing with new techniques.. Thank you!

  • Brenda Van Matre
    Posted at 07:25h, 20 September Reply


    I am new to embroidery and want to thank you for your detailed instructions on making napkins. Reading one of your recent posts on creating hemstitched napkins, inspired me to purchase a wing needle and make some lightweight white linen napkins. Do you use stabilizer when you are machine hemstitching on lightweight fabric?

    In this post, I also learned so much! Step 8 is ingenious. I never thought to remove the stabilizer and fabric then trim away the fabric around the outline stitch. Hopefully, that results in giving a nice clean edge finish. Also, your information about which stabilizer is helpful to someone like me, who is just starting out. I really to appreciate everything you write. Thanks for working so hard on your blog.
    Brenda Van Matre

  • Cindy Hawkins
    Posted at 07:27h, 20 September Reply

    Oh, how gorgeous these napkins are! I wish I had a machine capable of embroidery, particularly monogramming, but I don’t. so, I would be especially thrilled and honored to win these! Thank you so much, Sara. for the very generous giveaway!

  • Sandra McAvoy
    Posted at 07:45h, 20 September Reply

    Love the cocktail napkins! Hoping to win!!!

    I have really enjoyed all of your blog posts. One day, I want to make a faux Chanel jacket! Goals!

  • Kitty Staskelunas
    Posted at 07:47h, 20 September Reply

    Your instructional posts are so helpful to someone just learning the nuances of embroidery. Love anything monogramed and love your napkins! I look forward to your blogs and will be checking out Becky’s YouTube videos. Thank you

  • Christine Taylor
    Posted at 07:48h, 20 September Reply

    Thank you for your post, such a helpful one as I was just starting to think about Christmas sewing and it would be lovely to win your set.

    • Sherry Pleas
      Posted at 08:29h, 20 September Reply

      You are an inspiration!

  • Annie
    Posted at 07:49h, 20 September Reply

    You are too right, It is never too early for Christmas. And those napkins would be lovely on my Christmas table. Thanks for such a great giveaway.

  • Karla Hollett
    Posted at 07:52h, 20 September Reply

    Simply elegant!

  • Melissa Martin
    Posted at 08:08h, 20 September Reply

    You are so talented Sarah! Love the napkins!

  • Gail Moodie
    Posted at 08:10h, 20 September Reply

    Your posts are so helpful and the results just terrific! Cheers to you and the upcoming holidays

  • Wendy Sikes
    Posted at 08:15h, 20 September Reply

    Wonderful post ( as always!) really good info, and tutorial! I will try this today. I love these napkins, they are very popular , by making our own the possibilities are endless! Thank you for the inspiration.

  • Laura Casey
    Posted at 08:19h, 20 September Reply

    WOW are these cute and fanciful…… know a friend told me that there are less than 30 days between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year….YIKES!….and yes I’ve started a cute purse for my daughter in law for Christmas……
    The online sewing community is fantastic in so many ways!
    Thank you for always inspiring me and providing great directions!

  • Gretchen Reed
    Posted at 08:19h, 20 September Reply

    I love the napkins and the mugs!! I’m wishing for an embroidery machine so I can learn to make these. Thank you for your blog.. I am excited to read it every time. Even though I mainly sew children’s clothes I admire your skills and learn so much from you.
    Thank you!

    Gretchen Reed

  • Lisa G :-)
    Posted at 08:20h, 20 September Reply

    Another beautiful project, and how awesome that Becky reached out to you with that information! I have been doing machine embroidery for anfew years, but haven’t ever created a design…now I may have to! Thank you for your wonderful, always-inspiring blog, and for your generosity with this giveaway!

  • Jo Peavey
    Posted at 08:26h, 20 September Reply

    You never cease to amaze! These are terrific

  • Patricia Gourieux
    Posted at 08:29h, 20 September Reply

    Thank you for the inspiration and for spurring me on to start planning my Christmas sewing I! love my Pfaff Performance Icon and the metal hoop.. I think I’ll order some flannel and whip some of these cute little napkins up for a couple of friends.

  • Adecia Walker
    Posted at 08:30h, 20 September Reply

    Sarah, your posts are always so inspiring and full of useful information. Thank you for sharing your many beautiful projects! These napkins are gorgeous and I would love to win!

  • Amy Guzman
    Posted at 08:31h, 20 September Reply

    Perfect – I love trying new projects on my embroidery machine. Thank you for sharing this information.

  • Carol Mendoza
    Posted at 08:33h, 20 September Reply

    Those are beautiful? You make it look so easy. I’m a long time follower of Becky’s YouTube channel as well as your channel.

  • Cynthia Flagg
    Posted at 08:37h, 20 September Reply

    I love a plaid napkin for Christmas. I’m really enjoying your napkin tutorials! Thanks.

  • Chris stickland
    Posted at 08:39h, 20 September Reply

    Thanks for the information about all the resources available for embroidery projects, they will come in handy. Your Christmas projects are super cute. Thanks for sharing your skills with us.

  • Linda Appleby
    Posted at 08:43h, 20 September Reply

    Beautiful and inspiring! Also a great reminder that the holidays will be here very soon!

  • Lamar Mendiola
    Posted at 08:48h, 20 September Reply

    Those are lovely with a classic look. Thank you for the instructions and have joined the You Tube tutorials as well. Hope I win!

  • Carolyn Holmes
    Posted at 08:53h, 20 September Reply

    The napkins are delightful! Time to fire up my Icon and get busy for Christmas! You are such an inspiration and so helpful……. I love your blog. Thank you so much!

  • Sandra Brown
    Posted at 08:53h, 20 September Reply

    Love your ideas. The cocktail napkins are gorgeous..right size for little hands.. may make a few for my nephew’s young girls. Beautiful and easy projects!!

  • Lisa Jones
    Posted at 08:57h, 20 September Reply

    Love,love,love these.!!!! Thank you for sharing the instructions. Happy Sunday!!

  • Becky Smith
    Posted at 09:02h, 20 September Reply

    I love re-useable (cloth) napkins as opposed to throw away (paper). Great gift idea for all seasons. Thanks

  • Roxanne Reynolds
    Posted at 09:05h, 20 September Reply

    Sarah, these monogrammed napkins are beautiful. Hope you are doing well.

  • Suzanne
    Posted at 09:05h, 20 September Reply

    My family and friends have always delighted in Christmas tartan napkins and these makes a welcomed addition to our collections. Thanks for your inspiring posts in these difficult days. I just ordered your first book on Style and can’t wait to dive into it! 🤗 Suzanne

  • Lindsay Carroll
    Posted at 09:07h, 20 September Reply

    Your continue to inspire and educate! These directions are terrific and I can’t wait to try!

  • Christine Gibbons
    Posted at 09:10h, 20 September Reply

    Beautiful gift. Have been following you for several years and you are a wonderful inspiration.

  • Christine DuPuis
    Posted at 09:14h, 20 September Reply

    I love all of your sewing projects,
    I have been following you since the beginning,

  • Beth Tingo
    Posted at 09:17h, 20 September Reply

    Sarah, I love cloth napkins and when you posted your first set I though they were fantastic. An embroidery machine is not in my budget at this but hope to in the future. I absolutely love Christmas decorating and entertaining with family. Thank you for all your informative posts.

  • Jan Wilson
    Posted at 09:22h, 20 September Reply

    These are just lovely! Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge with us🙏🏻.

  • Trish Probandt
    Posted at 09:25h, 20 September Reply

    Love these napkins! I can’t wait to try this technique!!

  • Sara Ruiz
    Posted at 09:35h, 20 September Reply

    What an amazing and generous prize! I love your blog for the beautiful clothing that you create and the way you explain your techniques and interact with your followers. Thank you!!!

  • Diane Wittik
    Posted at 09:36h, 20 September Reply

    Just lovely! Looks so nice on the table.

  • MarYEllensews
    Posted at 09:40h, 20 September Reply

    Amazing generosity as always Sarah !!!! These are just stunning
    – I can’t wait to try this technique . It’s nice to have some projects in the que that are fun as well
    Thanks Sarah 🥰

  • LizR
    Posted at 09:43h, 20 September Reply

    I love that you were able to react positively to the attempt to help you rather than defensively and made even more awesome napkins!

  • Elizabeth Lewis
    Posted at 09:44h, 20 September Reply

    This is so helpful! I can’t wait to try this out!

  • Sunbubblenova
    Posted at 10:06h, 20 September Reply

    Many thanks for the detailed instructions! Makes me think one day an embroidery machine will be needed at our house. By the way, where were the last photographs taken? It looks like a beautiful area.

  • Paceda Petrine
    Posted at 10:07h, 20 September Reply

    These napkins are adorable! Thank you for sharing your talent with the sewing community.

  • MarYEllensews
    Posted at 10:27h, 20 September Reply


  • Linda Anderson
    Posted at 10:28h, 20 September Reply

    Wow! You are just so absolutely inspirational! Makes me want to go out and buy an embroidery machine. You really make it all look so easy, and make such beautiful things-

  • Carla Montanez
    Posted at 10:30h, 20 September Reply

    As always another beautiful creation. Thank you for your inspiration. Also thanks for the helpful information! A classic look.

  • Mary Ann Bassett
    Posted at 10:40h, 20 September Reply

    Love what you have created! Been following for a few years now and you always delight!

  • Janet Hough
    Posted at 10:47h, 20 September Reply

    Beautiful! My mother did work like this but I just don’t have the patience.

  • Marguerite LeBlanc
    Posted at 10:48h, 20 September Reply

    Love your beautiful work!

  • Jan
    Posted at 11:00h, 20 September Reply

    Absolutely…….perfect! I love your work!

  • Karen Helm
    Posted at 11:13h, 20 September Reply

    What fun! Please count me in for an opportunity to win, Sarah – and thank you! (Merry Christmas, I think!)

  • Karin Hill
    Posted at 11:18h, 20 September Reply

    These are so festive! What a lovely idea for Christmas hostess gifts.

  • Becky Calvin
    Posted at 11:41h, 20 September Reply

    These are beautiful and has me looking forward to Christmas already. Also, this post now has me looking at the Pfaff Creative Icon as my next purchase.

  • Luku Isaac
    Posted at 11:45h, 20 September Reply

    Beautiful! I especially love the plaid. Perfect for New Years Eve .

  • Julie Nesting
    Posted at 11:54h, 20 September Reply

    These napkins are so beautifully finished! Ever since seeing your first amazing round, I’ve been dreaming of my next sewing machine and it’s list of requirements!!

  • Debbie Weber
    Posted at 12:06h, 20 September Reply

    Beautiful napkins! I looked at Becky’s tutorial and found it really helpful! I have an embroidery machine and would like to try this. In the mean time a set of ready make napkins would be a nice addition to my holiday table. Thanks for the inspiration! Sew on!

  • Janet C
    Posted at 12:08h, 20 September Reply

    thank you sarah for this wonderful give-a-way. what says the holidays better than a beautiful plaid. your napkins are beautiful. wish me luck. 🙂 janet

  • Jaclyn Jacquard
    Posted at 12:15h, 20 September Reply

    Thank you for the updated process and a new resource to learn from. A set of napkins would be welcome at Christmas.

  • Alania Sheeley
    Posted at 12:20h, 20 September Reply

    The cocktail napkins are lovely. One of my favorite fabrics at Christmas is the wonderful plaid fabrics. Thanks for sharing.

  • Christie Staton
    Posted at 12:36h, 20 September Reply

    AhhHaa! The tutorials cleared some of the fog (details). We’ve just retired and now I can learn how to enjoy my embroidery machine. I think our new home needs new cocktail napkins and these would be perfect. Thanx for the opportunity and the concise information. Christie

  • Maribeth
    Posted at 12:53h, 20 September Reply

    I would love to win! Thank you for the idea, the tutorial and the link!

  • Ruthe Ploskunyak
    Posted at 12:56h, 20 September Reply

    So pleased to have your gentle reminder that Christmas is coming and I need to get myself in gear. Nice project.

  • Pat Corcoran
    Posted at 12:56h, 20 September Reply

    Beautiful application of scallops and embroidery on plaid. A trifecta !
    Such a classic look. Thank you for your guidance on machine embroidery.

  • Judy Jacque Miller
    Posted at 12:57h, 20 September Reply

    I love Christmas plaid fabrics and your coasters are perfect. Thank you for sharing all the info for successfully creating them.

  • Katy Andersen
    Posted at 13:14h, 20 September Reply

    Beautiful work! I hope to explore machine embroidery when my kids are older and I have more time to devote to learning it.

  • Kathleen Dowd
    Posted at 13:16h, 20 September Reply

    I love your napkins. Beautiful!

  • Deb Wilkinson
    Posted at 13:16h, 20 September Reply

    How thoughtful of you to offer this wonderful giveaway.
    Excellent instruction, and beautiful results.

  • Susi McCarthy
    Posted at 13:28h, 20 September Reply

    What a lovely offer!!! I would LOVE to have a new set of cocktail napkins. Thank you for offering such a wonderful giveaway.

  • Linda Richards
    Posted at 13:36h, 20 September Reply

    What a fun project and great way to spend time while staying close to home! I would love to be the lucky winner of this give away!

  • Diane McLean
    Posted at 13:54h, 20 September Reply

    A very creative Christmas flair. The plaid really pops with monogramming!

  • Margene Yeaton
    Posted at 14:38h, 20 September Reply

    Love Becky’s blog and LOVE your blog. Great combination! Beautiful holiday embroidery and thank you for sharing. Both you and Becky have MANY TALENTS! Happy Holidays to you and your family.

  • MonicaAD
    Posted at 14:39h, 20 September Reply

    Always a pleasure to see you come out with next … FIESTA 🙂

  • Alice Elliot
    Posted at 14:58h, 20 September Reply

    As I admire all these creations I’m thanking my lucky stare that I kept all my grandmother’s hand made scalloped cocktail napkins. Whew!

  • Alice Elliot
    Posted at 14:59h, 20 September Reply

    Oops. Stars.

  • Jane. Ope
    Posted at 16:22h, 20 September Reply

    Absolutely beautiful!

  • Maggie Edger
    Posted at 16:28h, 20 September Reply

    What nice gifts these will make. Your whole collection is just perfect. A Maggie

  • Maggie Edger
    Posted at 16:30h, 20 September Reply

    So neat. Brings cocktail hour up a notch. Cheers!

  • Cynthia Rucker
    Posted at 16:49h, 20 September Reply

    Love the blog, and I would love to serve some drinks with those cute scalloped napkins!

    Posted at 17:23h, 20 September Reply

    Love the monogrammed napkins! I would love winning the napkins. I follow you on your blog, It’s Sew Easy and Facebook. Enjoy seeing that new inspirational project you have posted.

  • lisa magee
    Posted at 17:35h, 20 September Reply

    Very cool

  • Christine Fromont
    Posted at 17:48h, 20 September Reply

    I have never been overly fond of machine embroidery but that is all changing now, thanks to you! I shall take Becky’s tutorial and get started. Never a better than during semi-lockdown/lockdown.

    I love your posts on Goodbye Valetino. I have used several of the patterns you have recommended over the years.

    Many thanks

  • Joy Jensen
    Posted at 19:53h, 20 September Reply

    Love the Christmas cocktail napkins and thanks for sharing the tips!

  • Leigh Wheeler
    Posted at 19:59h, 20 September Reply

    Thanks for all the great tips! The Christmas cocktail napkins are perfect!

  • Tiffany Whitehead
    Posted at 20:30h, 20 September Reply

    Love the Christmas napkins!! I also have an embroidery machine so I can’t wait to view the tutorial! I’d love to win the set of napkins!!

  • Kathy
    Posted at 20:36h, 20 September Reply

    Beautiful napkins. How wonderful that Becky came to your aid. We don’t know what we don’t know.

  • Kelly M.
    Posted at 20:59h, 20 September Reply

    Well done! These napkins are so elegant. And, thank you for sharing Becky’s information. I will be visiting her site soon. 🙂

  • Sherry B
    Posted at 21:28h, 20 September Reply

    I follow your posts and look forward to each one. I am not ready to think about the holidays, but I love the scalloped napkins! They are beautiful. Thank you for the chance to win.

  • Kathryn King
    Posted at 21:40h, 20 September Reply

    Yes, the online sewing community is amazing. I love how we all are willing to share our expertise and we take great joy if someone learns something new because we shared. Love the scalloped napkins – I’ve been making your perfect mitered napkins and coasters. Thank you!

  • Cynth M
    Posted at 23:10h, 20 September Reply

    The napkins are beautiful and so festive! Thank you for the instructions and for the giveaway.

  • Wanda Stephen
    Posted at 23:26h, 20 September Reply

    Sample Scalloped Napkins pictured in table on boat was very pleasant as well as different.

  • Mary Anne Chambers
    Posted at 04:09h, 21 September Reply

    These napkins will add a very stylish touch to any Christmas party. How lovely it will be for you to use them when this trying time has passed and once again we can enjoy the company of friends and family in joy, peace and harmony!

  • Daisy BROMLOW
    Posted at 07:31h, 21 September Reply

    Love your blog and would love to have the napkins , as I don’t have anything nice. Have a blessed week.

  • Marnita B Miller
    Posted at 09:09h, 21 September Reply

    Love your blog and the napkins would be divine!

  • Deb Carpenter
    Posted at 09:42h, 21 September Reply

    Thank you for the helpful tips!! All you stitched are beautiful!!

  • Patrizia Momigliano
    Posted at 10:19h, 21 September Reply

    These napkins are truly beautiful! What a great gift for a special friend.

  • Maria Dimas
    Posted at 11:11h, 21 September Reply

    Your posts are so inspirational, thank you! Napkins are just beautiful!

  • Helen Haughey
    Posted at 12:35h, 21 September Reply

    These are really lovely Sarah

  • Cynthia Willis
    Posted at 09:47h, 22 September Reply

    I woke up thinking of your tutorial this morning. I have 3 yards of white lightweight linen that will make lovely napkins. Becky Thompson is an accomplished embroiderer and. always has good advice and great ideas. Thank you.

  • Gail Foglietta
    Posted at 10:58h, 22 September Reply

    Great teaching as always! Thank you! Just as Ina Garden is my guru for cooking, you are my guru for sewing!

  • Diane Lord
    Posted at 14:21h, 22 September Reply

    Your napkins are lovely as are all of your makes! Thanks so much for offering a set in this giveaway. I would love to be the winner!

  • Sheila Ceigersmidt
    Posted at 17:26h, 22 September Reply

    They are just gorgeous! What wonderful Christmas gifts these would make!

  • LucyLowry
    Posted at 20:03h, 22 September Reply

    Thank you for the instructions…❤️

  • Jane Phillips
    Posted at 07:17h, 23 September Reply

    I always love your posts. I will try to follow your directions to make these for gifts!

  • Linda Bakker
    Posted at 10:43h, 27 September Reply

    You are such an inspiration to me, especially to think outside the box! Thank you so very much for sharing.

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