Have you ever heard of “shibori”? Shibori is a traditional Japanese technique. Textiles are tied in an expert way and a dye is applied. The result is a truly unique pattern which always looks mesmerising!

Can you see napkins and textiles like this at your wedding? If your wedding style is relaxed with boho elements, or alternative with eco-friendly elements, these DIY napkins could be an excellent choice. And you don’t need to stop at napkins. How about making table runners or eye-catching photography backdrops? 

Rebecca Snowden, Interior Style Advisor at Furniture Choice shares 4 shibori tie-dye designs that can easily be done at home with us: 


1. Get all your tools ready

Laying out all the tools at the start will make the whole process a lot easier.

You will need:

fabric dye
rubber bands
white cotton napkins
a bucket
empty squeeze bottle
rubber gloves and salt.

2. Prep the napkins for the tie-dye process 

Machine wash the napkins first; this will help the fabric absorb the dye faster, so it’s best to use them right out of the machine when they’re still damp. When washing the napkins make sure to avoid using fabric softener. This may repel the ink.

Meanwhile, prepare the dye using the instructions on the packet. Add salt as it will help the fabric absorb the dye easier then mix well in a packet.

3. Tie and wrap with rubber bands

These four designs (swirls, crumpled, stripes and circles) require plenty of rubber bands to achieve the right pattern when the dye is poured onto it.

Swirl design


The swirl and crumpled methods are quite similar. For the swirl, lay the napkin out flat then pinch and twist the centre of the napkin. Keep twisting until it looks like a flat rose shape.

Crumpled design


The crumpled method starts with crumpling and twisting the napkin until it’s shaped like a ball. Tie rubber bands around the napkin to split into sections.

Stripes pattern


The stripes method is probably the most straightforward. Fold the napkin from the bottom up in pleats so the napkin is in a long thin shape. Use 5 to 8 rubber bands to along the piece of napkin.

Circle design


For the circle design, choose the areas of your fabric where you want dyed circles to appear. Pinch and pull up these areas and tie a rubber band around them so the fabric sticks up.

4. Squeeze the ink to begin the tie dye process

Pour the dye into a squeeze bottle to start the dyeing process. Squeeze the ink onto the tied area where the rubber bands are. Leave them tied up for 24 hours.

5. Rinse and machine wash the napkins

Help reduce any dye bleeds by rinsing the napkins with cold water until the water runs clear. When that is done, remove the rubber bands and rinse with warm water. This is the time to admire your handiwork!

Rebecca advises: “You should machine wash the dyed napkins again but make sure to do it without any other clothing just in case the dye still bleeds. Iron them once they dry and they are now ready to use.”

“The carefree look of these shibori tie-dyed napkins are a playful, chic way to bring a summery feel to the dining room when entertaining. Round off the modern coastal theme with organic elements like wood, rattan and sea-inspired artwork.”

Thank you 

Many thanks Furniture Choice for sharing their expert advice with us. 

FurnitureChoice.co.uk is an independent furniture retailer. The company combines a deep knowledge of contemporary furniture manufacturing with first-class e-commerce expertise.

To find out more visit www.furniturechoice.co.uk.


  1. Jasmine E

    Ok, I’m basically sold on almost anything DIY, but this is solo cute! I like the idea of making tie-dye elegant when pairing it with a nice plate and bowl set. Thanks for sharing!

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