In my garage, I have a big pile of scrap wood leftover from other projects. I didn’t want to throw it away so I decided to build a small DIY Napkin Holder with salt and pepper compartments. This is a simple DIY project for a beginner to try and doesn’t cost a lot of money to make it.
After staining the Napkin Holder, I used two different chalk paint to make a rustic look. I love how it turned out. It’s a great addition to our dining table.
Time to Complete
Napkin Holder PDF
This PDF download includes Cut Diagrams, a List of Supplies, and 3D illustrations with detailed steps to build the project. Measurements are in imperial and not metric. Does NOT include SketchUp/CAD files.
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Tools for this project
Note: Lumber dimensions are listed as nominal size. See lumber sizes for actual dimensions vs nominal.
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Step 1 – Cut Two Sides of a Napkin Holder
Take ½” plywood and with a table saw cut two 2 1/2″x11 1/2″ pieces with a 45 degree cut on the 2 1/2″ side.
Step 2 – Drill a Hole Thru Both Sides
From the inside of the 45° cut, measure and mark 3 1/2″. Then from the top of the board measure and mark 1 1/4″. This will be the center of the hole. Using a 1 1/4″ hole saw bit drill a hole in the center of the mark. Then cut from top of the board to the hole opening with a jig saw. Do this for both boards.
Step 3 – Cut the Smaller Sides of the Napkin Holder
Similar to step one, take 1/2″ plywood and cut two boards to 2 1/2″ x 8″ with 45° cut on the 2 1/2″ side.
Step 4 – Attach all Sides Together
Using the random orbital sander lightly sand the pieces to eliminate any rough edges. Then apply wood glue in the seams and attach the pieces together using Nail Gun with 1 ¼” brad nails. I only had one nail in the center of the board.
Step 5 – Cut 1/4″ Plywood for Bottom of DIY Napkin Holder
Now take ¼” plywood and cut a 13 1/2″ x 10″ piece. Then place the frame of the napkin holder on top of this 1/4″ plywood making sure it’s aligned in the center. Apply wood glue between plywood and frame and clamp it together. Let the glue dry.
Step 6 – Make a Divider for Salt and Pepper
To make a divider for the salt and pepper, cut one 7″ x 2 1/2″ piece and one 3″ x 2 1/2″ piece. Glue both pieces together as shown in the picture. This will be inserted in the napkin holder after it’s stained.
Step 7 – Cut PVC Pipe for Napkin Holder
Take a 3/4″ PVC pipe and cut it to 10″ in length. Then slide both PVC end caps on both ends.
Step 8 – Finish by Staining and Painting
Stain and paint all the pieces including the PVC pipe. Once everything is stained, insert the salt and pepper divider inside the napkin holder frame and nail it using a Nail Gun. Then attach the decor metal pieces on each corner. You’re done with this DIY napkin holder.