How to Turn a Napkin Into a Beautiful Suncatcher

As we are now in our third lockdown in Ontario and everything is closed, I am “shopping” my house once again for items I can use for projects. (see some of last years lock down projects here and here)

I came across this old frame I had and have always loved its shape and details. It was the perfect size to make into a suncatcher to add a little sparkle to one of my windows.

napkins and old frame

The Insert

To create the insert that would catch the sun and look like stained glass, I sifted through my napkin collection (yes, that is a thing!) looking for something pretty. I settled on a beautiful butterfly one that seemed to just scream spring. (here are some similar ones…)

A napkin in and of itself is a little too flimsy to use as an inset so it needed to be hardened up. I tried several different products to do this and by far the best was Mod Podge.

Brush a thick layer over an acetate sheet,

mod podge on acetate sheet

separate the napkin from its backing,

separating a napkin into two pieces

and then lay the front part over the Mod Podge.

laying a napkin on layer of mod podge

Once you have the napkin laying on the Mod Podge, be careful if you try to smooth it out. It will rip easily since it is so thin.

I found it much easier to smooth it out with the brush as I brushed on another thick coat of Mod Podge over the napkin.
covering a napkin with mod podge

After the Mod Podge has completely dried (I waited several hours), peel the napkin away from the acetate sheet. The Mod Podge peels very easily whereas some of the other products I tried were not as smooth.

peeling up a napkin covered in dried mod podge

Attaching the Insert

The napkin covered in the dried Mod Podge will be pliable but stiff. You can easily trim it down to the size of the frame you are working with.

I gave my frame a fresh coat of yellow paint and then attached the insert to the back with hot glue. I also added some vintage yellow string so I had a way to hang it.

attaching napkin covered in mod podge to the back of a frame

The new suncatcher looks so pretty hanging in the window. The napkin allows the light to flow through like stained glass but was so much quicker and easier to make.

napkin sun catchernapkin in an old frame sun catcher

Only three more weeks of lockdown to go (we hope!) so I guess it will be back to the stash to see what else I can make…

vintage frame upcycled into a sun catcher

**Please note that this post includes affiliate links for your convenience.  All links are for products that I have tried and use regularly.  By using the link, it in no way increases the cost of the item to you should you choose to purchase.  However, by using the link, a small portion of the sale is given back to help fund this blog. Thank you and Happy Creating! **

Pin for Later…

upcycled frame and napkin suncatcher

6 Comments on " How to Turn a Napkin Into a Beautiful Suncatcher "

  1. Lisa

    that is a new idea!! Gotta try it!! Thanks Lisa!

    1. Lisa

      🙂 It was fun and looks so pretty in the window! You will have to try it for sure.

  2. Lisa

    Hi Lisa, love this idea and have a similar frame to try it on. We must frequent the same second hand stores. I have a bag of different napkins which I pick up if the pattern is different. Really love the butterfly napkin you chose. Thank you for the inspiration.

    1. Lisa

      Haha we probably do! Aren’t there so many pretty napkins out there?! I have been looking for a way to use this one and love how it turned out. It really does look so lovely with the light coming through.

  3. Lisa

    That is so cool Lisa. I love the idea. I can hardly wait to try this.

    1. Lisa

      Thanks so much Elizabeth! There are sooo many pretty napkins out there that the possibilities are endless.

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