Napkin Folding Blog
Get your expert advice on napkin folding with step-by-step instructions on how to create your own unique napkin folds for your special occasion. I have over 20 years of experience in creating stunning events both large and small. Now I want to teach you how to fold napkins on my napkin folding blog. Join me here to learn The Art of Napkin Folding and Entertaining!
The dreary winter months are finally over, and what a cause for celebration—spring has arrived! The weather is getting warmer, beautiful trees and flowers are beginning to bloom, and Easter is just around the corner. Whether you’re hosting an elaborate affair or planning a simple meal for your immediate family, a delightful Easter table setting can give your dining room table an instant makeover that will help make the holiday even more joyous.
Decorative centerpieces consisting of baskets full of pastel eggs, fluffy yellow chicks and adorable chocolate bunnies are typical on Easter, but your choice of place settings can also make a huge impact. Forgo paper napkins and choose cloth napkins instead—they can be folded into miniature works of art that add a sophisticated touch to the entire meal. It’s a rather simple gesture, but your family and friends will be amazed at your knack for design.
Dinner napkins come in a variety of sizes that can be folded beautifully. White is a safe choice, but you may want to select napkins that coordinate with your tablecloth, plates and other table decorations. Many cloth napkins are even adorned with ribbons, rolled stitches or other simple embellishments. Add a corresponding place card in front of each table setting, and you’re good to go!
Chef Raymond also shared a favorite cookie with me that I’m passing it onto you.
½ cup butter
½ cup white sugar
½ cup brown sugar
1 cup oatmeal
¾ cup flour
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. ground cloves
¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
½ tsp. vanilla
1/3 to ½ cup raisins
1/3 to ½ cup shredded coconut
1/3 to ½ cup chocolate chips
1/3 to ½ cup white chocolate chips
1/3 to ½ cup pecans
1/3 to ½ cup anything else you like to add
Cream butter with white and brown sugar.
Add egg, mix well and add oatmeal.
In a separate bowl mix flour with baking powder, salt, cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg. Then add the dry mixture to the butter mixture along with vanilla.
Then add the raisins, coconut, chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, pecans, etc. Spoon dough (using a teaspoon) onto greased cookie sheets, and bake at 350˚ for 8 to 10 minutes.
Makes 150 – 1oz. cookie
I have worked in the catering business for some time, and I have met many people including several chefs. I have found them very interesting and I wanted to share their stories with you. Recently I got to sit down with one and chat about his culinary life. Chef Timothy Raymond is a private estate chef in Palm Beach, Florida.
So, Tim how did you get started in this business?
“I’ve always enjoyed cooking. And when I was 13 years old I got a job doing dishes at a restaurant, the Northport Restaurant and I was off from there.
Do you have any formal culinary training?
I was taught throughout my five years at Northport. And I went to Johnson and Wales Culinary School in 1975.
Where does your cooking inspiration come from?
Must be God—can’t think of anything else.
Where do you shop and why?
Publix, Whole Foods, and Carmine’s, for convenience and quality.
What is your favorite cuisine?
What other ethnic foods do you like to cook?
I have ventured into many multi-cultural fields. I love to combine them all.
What do you cook at home?
Roasted chicken, shrimp scamp & pasta…etc.
Who is your favorite TV chef?
Ina Garlen, but more for her cookbooks.
What is your favorite restaurant to eat at on your day-off?
What are your hobbies and interest outside of work?
I like playing in a rock and roll band, running for exercise, and reading.
What is the best piece of advice you could give for a homemaker?
Mise en place—preparation is key
Although I have been working in private homes as well as the fine dining and catering industries for over twenty years, I was a bundle of nerves the morning of my meeting with Jacqueline Whitmore. Frightened of accidentally making a horrible etiquette mistake under Jacqueline’s microscopic eyes, I reassured myself “You’re an etiquette expert too!” Even so, I flipped through her book Business Class: Etiquette Essentials for Success at Work as a last-minute confidence booster before getting in the car.
The drive from my house to Jacqueline’s is only 30 minutes, but I allowed myself a bit of extra time just in case. Fortunately traffic was mild that day, but I had a bit of trouble locating her house. After accidentally driving past, I noticed Jacqueline waving and smiling. I backed up and parked my car while my heart pounded nervously. Glancing at my watch, I noticed that I was three minutes late. “Darn!” I though. “Strike one!”
Jacqueline’s beautiful home is everything you’d expect an etiquette expert’s residence to be: very charming and incredibly welcoming. I was impressed by the beautiful planters located at her front door as she led me straight to the kitchen, where water was already boiling for tea! What a gracious hostess! I had brought along my wife’s delicious homemade cupcakes as I’d promised, and Jacqueline led me to her loggia, located in a separate building.
After sitting down on incredibly comfy patio chairs which overlooked her beautiful pool, Jacqueline asked if I would like milk in my tea. Because I am Asian, I typically drink tea straight, and I declined. All of a sudden I remembered a lesson from her lecture: always say yes if offered a drink at a meeting. “Darn!” I thought again. “Strike two!” My heart still pounding, I silently chastised myself. Why didn’t I say yes?! Jacqueline took her tea with milk, and I tried to calm down over my etiquette infraction.
When I began telling Jacqueline about my plan to start a blog and my future goals for the project, she was very accommodating and gave me a lot of valuable advice. I couldn’t help but admire the decorative pillars on the loggia, which Jacqueline informed me were her husband Brian’s idea. Soon after, Brian came over to say hello and Jacqueline took advantage of the moment, asking him to snap a photo of us at our meeting.
After our tea and cupcakes were finished, Jacqueline gave me a tour of her home office and showed me the places where she conducts business and entertains. I left her home feeling much better than I felt when I arrived. She is truly a warm person, and not the least bit intimidating.
Did I “strike three?” during my meeting? We have to ask the expert the answer to that question! On that note, I highly recommend Jacqueline Whitmore, etiquette expert and author.