Replacing paper towels and napkins with cloth is an economical way to eliminate waste in the kitchen.
Almost 10 years ago, we gave up paper and purchased two dozen cloth napkins and about ten dish towels. The cost of an average paper towel roll is $1.30 and most families will go through at least one roll a week. That’s $67.60 a year just for paper towels! Napkins are a bit cheaper and average around $.02 per napkin. If you have a family of four and you each use three napkins per day, that equals $87.62 a year. So, if you replace cloth with paper, in 5 years you’ll save around $776.00. Over time, it really adds up!
I’ve always been a fan of slow and steady changes in the kitchen to avoid getting overwhelmed. To get started, I recommend purchasing twelve cloth napkins to start and just throwing them in the wash along with your other laundry. Then, you can make the transition to removing the paper towels by purchasing a few dish cloths. I tend to prefer white cloth napkins because you can bleach them if they get dirty. We’ve used some of our cloth napkins for at least 10 years now, so you can expect to get your money’s worth!
You can feel like a bit odd at first when you’re used to grabbing a paper towel for a spill or a mess on the counter, but you’ll get used to it over time and start reaching for a dish cloth instead.
Here are some great choices for cloth napkins and dishtowels to replace the paper variety:
Cotton 20×20 craft napkins
12-pack of 20×20 100% Flax Napkins
24-pack Cotton Bar Towels
Pottery Barn Cotton Napkin set (I really like thier cotton napkins and will wait until they have a sale to purchase. 🙂