My First Christmas Project - Stylish Cocktail Napkins

Susan MarsHello everyone! I’m Susan from and we work with the folks here at to offer you some of our best-selling embroidery blanks right here on Ann's website.  What a nice surprise it was to be asked to participate in the world of blogging here at! I instantly knew what journey I wanted  to take throughout the Fall season. Each year I have a long list of people I want to make gifts for, and each year I find myself stitching until 2:00am to quickly finish up that special gift at the last minute. It doesn’t matter that I’ve been thinking about the gift for four months. I still don’t manage to get it stitched until the morning of! Can anyone relate?

So when asked to write a blog, it was a no-brainer. Join me on my gift-giving  adventure of Holiday 2008! offers a great selection of embroidery blanks, supplies, and designs  that can really help to make your Cocktail Napkin Gift Setholiday season run smoother and be less stressful. I’m going to share with you some of our own personal projects that we’re working on! Everyone in our office embroiders as a hobby. It’s what we love, and it’s what we love to give!  So we sat down and planned our own personal gift lists and decided to share some of our favorites with you.  This will serve two purposes:

1)  Maybe our ideas will work for you too! Let us help you make easy decisions about the gifts you want  to give.
2) By working on this blog, it is forcing us to get our own personal holiday stitching done ahead of time—not last minute at 2:00am!

So what’s up first? Cocktail Hour! We all have those friends that throw the perfect parties and are the perfect hostesses. You’re convinced they have the “Martha” gene because everything is just right. I KNOW you’re thinking of someone like this right now in your head as you’re reading this post! For me, it’s my cousin. From the brilliantly baked hor d’oevres (she serves hor d’oevres, not appetizers!), to the fully-stocked bar, to the subtle mood music in the background, each party she produces is a masterpiece. I know just what to give her—and she can never have enough! 

Monogrammed Cocktail NapkinsFor my cousin I’m making a set of monogrammed cocktail napkins.  I’m actually making her two sets—one with a simple monogram for more elegant parties, and another set with fun designs that are great for more relaxed events.  For this project I am using:

1 dozen 12”x12” Hemstitched Tea Napkins, White
 Bonance Alphabet from Ann Cobb’s Alphabets
Cocktail Lounge 1” Design Collection by Amazing Designs
Ann The Grans Medium Weight Tear-away Sticky Stabilizer

For my simple monogrammed Set:
1)  I’m dividing the one dozen napkins into 2 sets of 6.  Folding each napkin into fourths will make it the appropriate size for a cocktail napkin.
2) I selected the letter “M” from the “Bonance” font design collection and printed a paper template of the design.  Using the paper cut-out of the design, I can decide where the design should be placed on the napkin so it is visually appealing.  Every letter has it’s own personality!
3) Hoop the stabilizer and make sure the “sticky” part is ready.  Using the paper template, place the napkin corner down onto the stabilizer.  Make necessary adjustments on your machine so your center point will be exact and line-up correctly.
4) Stitch all 6 napkins this way.  When finished, tear the remaining stabilizer from the back of the napkin and press lightly from the back with a hot steamy iron.  This will help “raise” the monogram on the front side.  (I’ve been known to stitch a monogram twice in the same place just to make it really raised!).
5) Wrap the size napkins up with a pretty ribbon and you’re ready to go!Cocktail Lounge Napkins

I followed the exact same instructions for the “Cocktail Lounge 1” designs, using individual designs instead of a monogram.  I think they turned out great! 

AND I NOW HAVE A FINISHED GIFT with 89 days remaining until Christmas!  Next project…QUICK and EASY gifts for the neighborhood pals…

Get to stitching!


Comments (13) -

Welcome Susan!  I used your larger napkins on my Cutwork Blog ("> and the results were so beautiful.  Quality always is a main consideration for me and your items are quality!

I love your bio, it is really like we are kindred spirits.  I am about to launch a little business of my own, here at ATG.  

Watch for my "The Right Tool" items!

Pat, The Avid Embroiderer

jalcumbrack 9/26/2008 6:09:50 PM

Hi Susan,

It is nice to know I am not the only one up at 2 A.M. getting things finished up for the holidays,I have no excuse either. I have been thinking about them since June!

These napkins look awesome, and the good news, "easy" and quick, but yet personal for each recipient! What a great gift!

I hate to admit it, but I am the one without the "Martha" gene either but my Sister-in-law is, so these will be perfect for her! In fact I made myself a kitchen plaque that specifies the fact that "Martha does NOT live here"! In fact I name my dust bunnies! (They are so cute!)

Welcome to the Ann The Gran world of blogging! I will follow intently as I hope to get mine done earlier this year as well!

Looking forward to reading more!


Hi Susan

I don't stay up until 2:00 a.m. That is just silly.. I get up at 4:00a.m. and work on my projects.... You know us creative people need time to think things

I love your "cutting the napkins" idea. Now, if I understand this correctly, they become large 12x6 rectangles? Or do you cut them twice and make them 6x6? Do you hem them again?

Keep coming back... Looking forward to reading more and more

cme 8^)

OK.. I reread your instructions, for the third time... you don't cut them at all, sorry about that...what was it I said about us creative

jalcumbrack 9/27/2008 2:21:35 PM

That's OK CME, maybe it is time to sleep in and stay up late,LOL!!

Me, I am up at all hours of the day and night, someone asked me once when I slept or did I take my sewing machine with me and work on things in my sleep!! LOL


You all have more energy that I do, I am asleep at 11 pm and not up until 8 am.  Then I wonder when I can fit a nap in!!!




I never said that I do not take a nap... whenever the mean ol' sandman hits my eyes, i am out on the couch... don't want to nap in bed.... seems to much like

jalcumbrack 9/28/2008 7:04:15 AM

The best way to get me to sleep is put in a DVD! I am out! I haven't seen the end of a movie in years! LOL  But I don't consider it napping! LOL


LOL... that is funny Judy.... but alas.. too true

Love the napkins.  I have the perfect "Martha" for them.  Now if I can just get them done before December!

Me too, Judy.  I think that someone should write a book called "Just the Ending" for those of us who have seen the beginning through the middle 3 times and want just the ending!


Hi Ladies-

Thanks so much for the warm welcome on the blog.  I am glad to know others are last-minute stitchers like me---it's just the way we roll!  I hope you found the inspiration to knock out a gift or two early and as I get accustomed to what is helpful to you, I hope you find the blogs useful.  I've been a "lurker" for awhile and have enjoyed the work of others.  it's fun to be on this side of it for a change!

Thanks so much---and I'm working on the next project soon!

jalcumbrack 10/6/2008 2:20:22 PM


Oh Yeah!

I have actually woken up in the middle of the night with an idea that I just "had to try out". I have to get up and do the project right away so it doesn't go out of my head by morning! I can't tell you how many times my Hubby has found me in the sewing room working away on something, when I should be sleeping. He just looks at me and says, "Honey, you're retired, you don't have to do this right now do you?"

"Of course I do before I forget how I dreamed it!"

He just throws up his arms and shakes his head,walks away mumbling!

(Actually I think it just keeps them guessing on what you're really doing,LOL!)

Pat>>> I agree, sounds like a marketing plan to me! I generally have to watch a movie at least 6 times before I get to the ending. Except I have them out smarted them now for the TV movies, I got a DVR,HA!! However it doesn't help with a DVD! The good news is that I can go to the chapter I think I left off with though!


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