Your next step is to prepare your chosen napkins. If you are using new napkins, they may be stiff enough to suit napkin folding simply because of their commercial preparation. If you are expecting your guests to use your creations, though, you might want to wash them and begin anew. Depending on the quality of your napkins, you may want to begin with a starch treatment, or spray on a spray starch prior to ironing. This treatment will give your napkins a more workable and long lasting texture. In any case, iron each napkin carefully before folding, steaming out any wrinkles, paying special attention to hems, which tend to become very puckered over time.
Now, you are ready to fold your napkin into a hat creation.
- Fold your napkin into a rectangle, matching the edges carefully.
Place this rectangle with the short edges towards you and the long folded edge to your right.
- Pick up both edges of one of the closest short, folded sides. Fold this edge over and under in accordian-type pleats about one inch wide.
Continue forming these pleats until you have reached about three-quarters of the way across your napkin rectangle. For extra hold, you may want to spray and re-iron each pleat. If not, be sure to finger-press each pleat edge.
End with all your pleats on top of your last folded pleat, and on top of the remaining flat fabric.
- Place both thumbs under the fabric pleats in the center of their width and rest your hands on top of your pleats.
Fold the left side under the right side and place on your working surface carefully.
- Above the folded pleats, will be your unpleated section of cloth. Pick up the far right corner which will have four layers of cloth in it,
and bring in down toward the near left corner of the flat cloth section, creating a triangle. Tuck under, finger-press or iron this fold.
- Lift up your napkin and place the open pleat edges upwards, and the long section of your triangle downwards. Allow the pleats to fan out towards your working surface, creating the tail of your cloth napkin turkey.