Marbling Fabric Napkins: How to Make Bespoke Table Decor

Amanda C, Hometalk Team
by Amanda C, Hometalk Team
6 Materials
2 Hours

Hosting holiday dinners like Thanksgiving is all about adding a personal touch to every detail. If you want to make your table settings truly one-of-a-kind, marbling fabric is the way to go.

I'm going to walk you through the step-by-step process of marbling your dinner napkins. This fun and creative craft will transform plain white napkins into bespoke pieces that reflect your personality, ensuring your table settings are as special as the occasions you're celebrating.

Marbled dinner napkin supplies

Materials and Tools You'll Need

Before we dive into the steps, make sure you have the following materials and tools at your disposal:

Hometalk may receive a small affiliate commission from purchases made via Amazon links in this article but at no cost to you.

Mix acrylic paint with fabric medium

1. Prep Your Paints

Let's start by turning your regular paints into fabric-ready acrylics.

Grab a Styrofoam plate or tray and mix each of your acrylic paint colors separately with the fabric medium. This step ensures that your paints are suitable for marbling on fabric.

If you have fabric paints, feel free to use them. But if, like me, you have a wide collection of acrylic paints, this step allows you to make the most of them for your marbling project.

Most fabric medium bottles come with mixing instructions, making the process a breeze.

Shaving cream craft

2. Spray the Shaving Cream

Next up, grab an old cookie sheet or an aluminum tray and spray a layer of shaving cream along the bottom.

Spread shaving cream onto a baking sheet

3. Spread It Evenly

Spread the shaving cream into an even layer, ensuring it covers the entire surface.

Marbling technique using shaving cream

4. Add the Paint

Now comes the fun part! Drip splotches of your acrylic paint onto the shaving cream. I chose three colors and applied them randomly. You can get creative with your color scheme if you like.

Marble effect with acrylic paint

5. Create the Marbled Effect

Using a mixing tool, gently swirl the paint drops into a mesmerizing marble pattern. This step is where you can let your creative juices flow and experiment with different designs.

Marbling fabric napkins

6. Place Your Napkin

Take one of your dinner napkins and carefully place it face down on top of the shaving cream and paint mixture.

How to marble napkins

7. Scrape and Reveal

After a few moments, remove the napkin from the shaving cream tray. Using your plastic ruler or scraping tool, carefully scrape off the shaving cream onto a trash bag or a piece of newspaper.

Remember to wipe the scraping tool clean before repeating this step.

Let the napkin dry

8. Dry and Set

Allow the marbled napkin to dry and set. You can choose your preferred heat setting method – I simply put my napkins in the dryer for 40 minutes at medium-high heat.

Alternatively, place a sheet of paper on top of your fabric and use an iron on a dry setting for an equally effective outcome.

Marbled art on dinner napkins

If you want to create more marbled napkins, repeat the entire process rather than reusing the painted shaving cream leftovers.

More Thanksgiving Table Decor Ideas

Explore additional DIY table decoration inspiration in our Thanksgiving table decor guide.

Marbled napkins

Marbling Fabric Dinner Napkins Tutorial

With this simple technique, you can infuse your personality into your table settings and make your gatherings truly unique.

So, why wait? Grab your supplies, start marbling fabric, and watch as your dinner table transforms into a work of art.

We'd love to hear about your marbling adventures and any tips you have – don't hesitate to share your experiences in the comments below. 

Resources for this project:
See all materials
Any price and availability information displayed on [relevant Amazon Site(s), as applicable] at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
Hometalk may collect a small share of sales from the links on this page.More info
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
3 of 66 questions
  • Jackie Jackie on Jun 25, 2021

    Wondering how these would do when needing washing. Would the pattern wash away?

  • Chris Buckland Chris Buckland on Jun 25, 2021

    Did you do both sides of the napkin?

    Thank you for sharing love the look !

  • Suzanne Marquardt Jarvis Suzanne Marquardt Jarvis on Jun 26, 2021

    This looks great! My daughter is getting married next summer and I was wondering if we could do this to table clothes? Or a runner?

Join the conversation
2 of 286 comments