antique toast rack: the perfect family-sized napkin holder


Right now, switching to cloth napkins is pretty low down on my green list. We’ve given it a go three different times but until life is a little less chaotic, it’s not practical for us to do every day. So after throwing in the towel yet again summer, I seplaceed in vain for something that would keep more than a handful of napkins in easy reach without taking up a ton of table space. No go. Then I was flipping through old tear sheets and saw the now-familiar toast rack used as a letter holder idea. Eureka! A seller on Etsy had an antique silver toast rack and tray for under $20. Thanks to the size, we can have 50 or so napkins on the table. And as luck would have it, the tray, which was made to hold small pots of marmalade, is the perfect size for salt and pepper or the oft-used bottle of Tabasco. You can find toast racks with trays on the usual sites — eBay, Etsy and Ruby Lane — starting for around $10. — Sarah L.

From our partners

Fwiw, the “key” to switching to fabric napkins is napkin holders. I let my kids choose their own. And I’d just wash the napkins every few days. Okay. Who am I kidding?!? Once a week! They were stashed in a basket under a dining room credenza. Easy peasy for the kids to get to when they set the table. (yep. a daily chore that rested w/whoever was the youngest)

I keep our paper napkins in a pretty ceramic plant pot. Just kind of fold the stack in half and drop them in. About 1.5 inches of the napkins stick up so it’s easy to grab one, and I like that they’re all contained and look tidy.


Hey, does this mean I now have an excuse to buy the Christopher Dresser toast rack of my dreams?