I think I could set a Guiness World Record for speed napkin folding. An audience, being recorded on an iPad for future reference and requests to provide folded napkins for a Christening- all weirdly real.
As a bit of a showoff when it comes to table laying, I’ve been googling napkin folding for some years. Of course one usually uses linen napkins, and for formal occasions this is perfect, but white linen is just not right for a kitch afternoon tea set up. So brightly coloured ‘serviettes’ made of paper are what is called for.
I can’t help remembering that Farv once said “you can always judge a restaurant on whether they use real napkins”. My restaurant must be very poor indeed.
He also said (on more than one occasion) “you can tell if someone is hard up if they have only taxed their car for six months”. Thank goodness the tax disk system is now dead and buried! Although rather a pain trying to remember when it’s due!
Anyway, that’s all by the by. Back to the napkin/serviette situation.
The napkin which impresses everyone the most has to be the lotus, which is rather hilarious (slash hugely frustrating) as it is ridiculously easy. Here’s how:
Step 1: Find yourself some attractive napkins (they’re serviettes, but it’s such a ghastly word, I’d rather not). They need to be square, as napkins a generally are.
Step 2: Take one napkin. Unfold it. Lay it decorative side down on a flat surface. It is possible to fold napkins across your knee but they don’t look half as neat. I used a table.
Step 3: Fold each corner to the centre point and crease nicely. There.
Step 4: Fold the new corners to the centre point, like so.
Step 5: Carefully turn the napkin over. I add ‘carefully’ as the beastly thing often tries to unfold itself.
Step 6: Again, fold the corners to the centre point. See, I told you it wasn’t diffy!
Ok, it does get a bit more tricky now- you might even need to use two hands.
Step 7: Pick a corner. Turn it over a tad. Hold it down with a finger. Using your other hand, find the loose triangle of napkin at the back and pull it over the top of your finger, rather like a hood. Repeat with the three other corners.
Step 8: Lastly, there are four more loose triangle of napkin on the underside of the lotus. Pull these up to create four more petals. Lovely darling.
Hopefully you will end up with something rather like this fine specimen.
Step 9: Make bloody loads of them. At speed. Impress everyone.