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Pinwheel Napkins

Make a down-home meal more fun with pinwheel napkins made from bandannas (they're easy to find and inexpensive).




  • Bandana
  • Iron


  1. Step 1


    Turn your iron to the high or cotton setting. Fold the bandanna into quarters, and iron it flat.

  2. Step 2


    Fold one side toward the center, as shown. Iron in place.

  3. Step 3


    Use your right index finger to hold the folded-up edge against the center. With your left hand, pull the corner toward you, as shown; fold the corner at a right angle to create a pinwheel "vane." Iron in place.

  4. Step 4

    Hold the center with your right index finger, and pull the upper left corner with your left hand so it folds down, as shown in the picture at right. Hold the center with your left index finger and pull the upper-right corner with your right hand so the vane points up; press it. Reach inside the bottom-right corner; pull out and fold to make the last vane. Iron flat.

Martha Stewart Living, July 2005



Reviews (21)

  • judiamsel 4 Jan, 2014

    Darling napkin fold, impossible directions. Try this instead:

  • geoferr 21 Jul, 2010

    Impossible directions, yet again. Surely Martha can afford to hire someone who can write instructions. Other sites find writers.

  • peacefulannie 6 Jul, 2010

    cute idea but directions are very hard to follow....

  • ChristineLael 10 Jun, 2010

    These instructions and photos are terrible! I'll try one of the websites suggested in the comments!

  • 6wicks 9 Sep, 2008

    For the life of me I can't figure this out. Need more pictures - not clear at all.

  • maychin 24 Jul, 2008

    It took me quite a while to figure it out. It was really frustrating and sheer perseverence and determination finally got me through. The pictures should be shown in the direction we work. And also more pictures would help.

  • julchik 27 Jun, 2008

    for instructions on many other npkin folds try
    it has clear instructions including pictures

  • julchik 27 Jun, 2008

    for instructions on many other npkin folds try
    it has clear instructions including pictures

  • anamenendez 20 Jun, 2008

    For much clearer instructions on how to fold pinwheel napkins, go to:

  • muiling 13 Jun, 2008

    Thank you geishagirl for the website, which is a very good one, I'd say. Yes, I agree, the above directions are confusing.

  • sharonmanis 12 Jun, 2008

    gish, Thanks I will try your idea 'causez I don't get this one eather!!!

  • rlbvw 12 Jun, 2008

    I'd love to be able to make the pinwheel napkin shapes, but am not having any luck. It would help if the pictures were in the same direction as I'm trying to work, rather than upside down. Picture 2 and 3 appear to be identical. Step 2: Fold one side toward the center--to the half-way spot, one-third? Step 3: pull the corner toward you, which corner? Step 4: folds down? I can't tell from the last picture exactly what is folding down. Has the napkin been rotated? What is the piece that

  • geishagirl 12 Jun, 2008

    Try this site:
    It gives clear instructions with easy step-by-step pictures detailing the instructions. Good luck!

  • judecooks 12 Jun, 2008

    Pictures 2

  • laurelsue 12 Jun, 2008

    as shown in pic #4, when you pull the corner down, you allow the napkin edge to fold in toward the center. may help to try with a napkin NOT folded in quarters first, so the extra layers don't confuse, then do the real thing after you see how it works

  • judieconner 12 Jun, 2008

    This website is even better, great pics and its really simple if you follow their instructions.....

  • karinrg 5 Jun, 2008

    Try this site:

  • ncschuh 22 May, 2008

    Please provide step by step visuals for the folding. What is shown is not customer friendly. Thank you.

  • pioneer588 21 May, 2008

    I don't get it either. Can we get more pictures or perhaps a video, please? I'd love to be able to fold these.

  • winnenden 1 Apr, 2008

    I too wasted too much time trying to figure this out. For one thing, photos 2 and 3 are identical. I think someone at MSL messed up. In any case, if anyone figures this out, please let us know.

  • DavidGrant 28 Mar, 2008

    Can anyone explain this folding technique to me? These still pictures aren't cutting it for me.