The Table Decor Trend That "Brings A Burst of Joy" — And For Less Than $5

You might have forgotten about the beauty of napkin rings, but we certainly didn't. Read on for more about what makes this table accessory so chic and practical.

colorful napkin rings on a colorful background
(Image credit: Anthropologie, Lulu and Georgia, West Elm)

If you thought your spring tablescape was set, think again — because there is one gorgeous (and practical!) item we think you're missing. You might (erroneously) associate this enduring piece of serveware with days of trends past, but Livingetc is here to debunk that narrative and show you just what is so great about this piece in particular. Specifically, we're talking about the napkin ring.

Yes, you read that right. The napkin ring — the small, typically tubular accent that cinches a cloth napkin right at its center — is one of our favorite accessories of the season, after having heard designers sing their praises for months. Perhaps they seem off-trend to you, or a bit too ... traditional. But we prefer to view them as antique and vintage instead, an opportunity to add a thrifted or collected touch to your dinner party (though all the ones we've collated below are notably not from the handmade or second-place market). Not to mention that personality and lived-in luxury rule the roost right now; perhaps you've heard of bookshelf wealth — napkin rings play into that aesthetically perfectly.

'From a design standpoint, napkin rings are a detail that can elevate the entire dining experience,' said Sarah Klingman, founder of event planning service Mostest. 'They act as jewelry for the table, adding a touch of elegance, luxury, or personality depending on their design. In the world of high fashion and luxury home décor, details like napkin rings can reflect the host's style and attention to detail, enhancing the overall aesthetic of the setting.'

Take Sarah's word for it and shop our edit of the best below, all of which bring a burst of joy and finesse. Your dinner party will thank you!

Our favorite napkin rings for spring

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Cassie LaMere, founder and creative director at Cassie LaMere Events, is seeing an increased use of 'artisan, handmade napkin rings composed of inventive materials,' at least in her team's designs. 'Everything from forged metal to foliage and rattan materials [brings] textural contrast to table settings,' she tells Livingetc.

Sarah reported similarly: 'There’s been a major return to artisanal and bespoke elements,' she said. 'There is a growing preference for napkin rings made from organic materials like wood, stone, or ceramics, showcasing craftsmanship and sustainability. Bold, sculptural designs are also trending, acting as statement pieces that can start conversations at the table.'

How should I decide which kind of napkin ring to use?

The vibe, mood, and look of your event should inform your choice of napkin ring. For example, Sarah said, 'playful and colorful designs can enhance the fun and festive atmosphere' of 'more casual or themed gatherings.'

'Think of the napkin ring as the tie that binds your tabletop together,' Cassie recommends. 'Choose a design and material that complements the pieces you've gathered, while allowing room for a hint of contrast so that the napkin ring adds an exclamation point to your inviting setting.'

You'd also do well to consider the time of year, with lighter materials and colors suitable for spring and summer' and 'richer tones and heavier materials' for autumn and winter, Sarah adds.

Brigid Kennedy
Style Editor

Brigid Kennedy is a style editor at Livingetc.com, where she is responsible for obsessively combing the internet for the best and most stylish deals on home decor and more. She was previously a story editor at TheWeek.com, where she covered both U.S. politics and culture. She describes her design style as colorful and clean, and in her free time enjoys reading, watching movies, and curating impossibly niche playlists on Spotify. She lives in New York.