A Little Secret To Delight Your Dinner Guests

If you’re like me, you rarely iron these days. I tend to iron a lot more in the spring/summer months since that’s when I’m wearing a lot of cotton and linen clothing. It’s perfect for those hot, balmy days and evenings here in the south.

When it comes to ironing my tablecloths and napkins, I have a little secret I thought I’d share with you today. Shhhh, don’t tell anyone, but I love to use scented linen water.


Linen water comes in lots of different scents…like ‘Grapefruit’…which I’ve used before…or ‘Sweet Pea’ as shown below.


My favorite, though, has to be lavender.


It reminds me of the French lavender I have growing in my gardens…

But, the best part about ironing with scented linen water is the delight on the face of your dinner guest as they unfold their napkin to place it in their lap, and suddenly catch the heavenly scent of Sweet Peas or Lavender! πŸ™‚ Now that’s worth just a little bit of ironing! πŸ™‚

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  1. Susan,
    Very lovely table setting.
    Refreshing like a gentle Spring rain.
    I am so very glad that I came across your site. You have a WONDERFUL blogspot!
    I’m enjoying all the ideas and hope to participate on a Monday or Thursday sometime this Spring after I get help posting pictures on my blog. Ouch…I’m not very techie minded.
    May you have a wonderful Spring.
    God’s richest Blessings to you,

  2. Susan, I just love taking a peek at your blog! I always find something beautiful!

    I wish I can grab all of my other dishes out of the storage so I can play with a lot more, lol!

    I’m so glad I found your blog; I am having so much fun participating in all of the memes! Last TT, I posted about all the great hosts of the ones I’ve participated in. It was such a fun post to do!

    Here’s the link if you didn’t get to visit last Thursday:


    Thanks, Carolyn (Chandy)

  3. Hi Susan. I use linen water every day. I spritz it on my bed just before making it up. The smell is soft and wonderful at night. Honestyly, now I’m realizing that maybe that’s not what I’m supposed to do with it. Oh well. πŸ™‚

  4. Kathleen Ellis says

    What a great idea, Susan! I use scented linen water when I iron my pillowcases and the top part of my top sheet..for my bed and the guest beds…it is such a treat. I also use scented lavender rinse for my bedding (when I wash it) as well…between the two the scent lingers for several days!
    I also spray it on the bedding in the guest rooms to keep them fresh.
    But…I have never thought to use it on my napkins, which I almost always iron before using…thanks for the great tip!
    Have a fabulous weekend!
    Happy Spring!

  5. Hey Susan, Where do you get the linen water? I have never seen it anywhere. I always love your blog, and look forward to it.
    Jean in Virginia

  6. Glenda/MidSouth says

    What a nice idea. I rarely use a tablecloth and cloth napkins, because I dislike ironing so much. I know I would have a prettier table if I did. When the Grands come, placemats and paper napkins just seem to work so much better. Hope you are having great weekend.

  7. Your tablesetting is just lovely and I am sure the sweet smell of some lovely lavender would really be a delight. I have not used the scented water, but I will give it a try. Thanks for sharing such a wonderful tip. Hugs, Marty

  8. How lovely! Thanks for the idea.

    All the best,

  9. Hi Susan…Now that is a great idea! I especially love the scent of lavender… πŸ˜‰ Bo

  10. Raggedy Girl says

    What a lovely idea. I like to iron. When you can’t make life work out the way you want, you can make wrinkles smooth out by ironing. Makes a person feel good and I love the idea of spritzing lavender on my ironing.

    Roberta Anne

  11. Thank you for the great ideas!

  12. Diane @ Four Paws and Co says

    What a great idea! How do you store your tablecloths & napkins? Are they rolled or hung up??? β™₯ Diane

  13. Blondie's Journal says


    I agree that ironig is a lost art indeed. I go into a trance when I’m doing my table linens! I have a little vintage glass bottle with a sprinkle cap. When I touch up shirts for my boys or husband, I put a few drops of their favorite cologne in the water and they love the subtle scent!


  14. Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) says

    Hi Jean,
    I purchased the linen water shown on my blog at Costco, but when I Googled it, I found it on Amazon.com, too. I would be surprised if Bed, Bath and Beyond didn’t have it.
    Diane, right now I store my tablecloths and napkins in the drawers in the lower half of my china cabinet. It would be great to store the tablecloths on hangers though…the way Bunny Williams shows in her book, An Affair with a House.
    Stacey…it’s a great idea to spritz it on your bed linens, too! πŸ™‚

  15. Cathy Miller says

    Yes, I use the linen scent too..I usually use rose scented..I found it at the Dollar Tree and bought about 5 bottles of it. Heavenly!

  16. A lovely table but blue and white tables always are!

    I, too, use linen water — and I make my own from the lavender that grows in the garden.

    Linen and lavender — that is a match!

  17. I always used the lavender linen spray. Can’t remember why I stopped…but I’ll go to World Market to get some.

  18. Penny @ The Comforts of Home/Lavender Hill Studio says

    Of course you know I love lavender!! I use the linen spray on my bedding. Such a soothing way to fall asleep…

    Thanks for the inspiration for Met Monday. I will join one day soon, I promise!

  19. Well I’m so glad to now about this! And I just read what you wrote about spraying the bed linens too! Thanks for the “smell goodie” tip!! πŸ™‚ L~

  20. Cottage Rose says

    Hello Susan; Wow scented water to iron with… I am going to have to go and look for some. I just love the smell of Lavender, how great it would be for my bedding…


  21. Pat@Back Porch Musings says

    Wonderful post, Susan! Thanks for the inspiration. I’ll definitely be doing this.

  22. great idea susan!,i might just try this one..have a great weekend!.silvia.

  23. That’s a great idea! Thanks for sharing your secrets! If you get a chance, come by and join my giveaway (before Tues.). Have a good weekend.

  24. cedwards55 says

    Don’t you love linen water? I’ve been known to spritz some on drapery panels and let my steamer “set” the scent. I’ve found TJ Maxx to be a great resource for linen water too! Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

  25. Terrie's Lil' Piece of Serenity says

    Susan, I love this stuff, too. Especially the lavendar in my bedding. It’s so relaxing.

  26. Hi SUsan

    My first visit to your blog, what a lovely respite here! I know I’ll be back!

  27. Kathy's Red Door Welcome says

    I love you blue and white dishes and the way you tuck the napkins between the charger and the plate.
    I always iron my table linens so I will try using some linen water next time.

  28. Hi Susan! Great tip and your table and garden looks great! Deb

  29. Thanks for the great tip, Susan! Those linen sprays smell so good. I use them sometimes on pillows.Thanks for your visit on my blogs, glad you enjoyed them. If you ever want to visit here, you can be our guest and we can show you around!…Christine

  30. I love the idea of linen water for the napkins. I will be off on a shopping trip tomorrow. Your napkins always look so fresh and crisp.

  31. Susan what a great idea, I can’t wait to try it. I usually wash my linens in scented wash, but never thought about napkins. You table setting is beautiful. I hope to participate in TT this week, I have never done that.

  32. reanaclaire says

    hi..wonderful to come by here to read yr blog for the first time.. i like it…very nice blog u hv here..

  33. I use it too! I think the one I use is lavender and sage? Anyway, I use it on everything I iron. 2/3 water and 1/3 linen spray! I like it better then anything else!

  34. I’m going to get some linen water today!

  35. Melissa Miller says

    Lovely idea Susan!
    I have seen the linen water at Marshalls and not bought any yet.
    It’s not my favorite chore but you’re right the fresh scent should inspire me.

    I have an Easter table ready for a TT post but I’m waiting until it’s a little closer to the actual Holiday.

    Happy Spring to you!
    ~Melissa πŸ™‚

  36. This is too funny! I just bought some at Christmas Tree Shops..to freshen the cushions.
    Now I will try it on the napkins too..I hate to iron though!
    I spread them out damp and press out as many wrinkles as I can with my hands and let them dry, then just do a touch up..
    I think ironing 100 white napkins after a party did it for me! πŸ™‚
    Thanks for the tip!

  37. jerseygirl211 says

    Hi Susan,

    I have a funny story to share about scented linens. I always line my bread basket with a cloth napkin when I’m serving bread. So one day when I had company, I put the warm cresent rolls in the napkin, lined basket. One of our Grmaddaughter’s, anxious to be the first to get her roll, smiled broadly, took a big bite and then yelled, as she started spitting the roll out of her mouth. πŸ™ We couldn’t understand what was happening, as we all watched in horror over her sudden distress and tears. Well…. It seems that the napkin got into a load of wash, by mistake, where I used fabric softner in the wash, and the hot rolls absorbed the perfumed, scent and tasted just awful.:( I had to throw the whole batch out and bake new ones, which ended being ready just in time for dessert. πŸ˜‰

    Your post reminded me of that happening.


  38. Hi there! Your post just reminds me I am NEVER too old to learn something new ………. thank you.

  39. Distressing Delilah a.k.a. jenn says

    I have done that too! Not for a while though, you just reminded me of it! Beautiful placesetting also!

  40. Thanks for the tip!

  41. Hi again … forgot to tell you I went back to see Cate/Joy’s bannister decor on 12/4/08 … it is really lovely and since I also have a bannister, I plan to take some inspiration from her.

  42. Charli and me says

    What a great idea! I have never seen that any where. I can imagine how nice everything smells β™₯

  43. English Cottage in Georgia says

    Susan, I too love the lavendar water. How do you keep the Georgia clover out of your lavendar?

  44. DebraK from ~the Bunnies Bungalow~ says

    I use linen water on my bedding. The scent lasts a long time. Great post with tons of ideas! I’ve joined Met Monday,

    Come on over, I’m having a GiveAway.

  45. Great tip on the linen water! Thank you for sharing! I love your dishes! So pretty!

  46. I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.



  47. Susan, where do you buy scented linen water? BB&Beyond? Doesn't lavender help with insomnia? I don't iron any pillow cases anymore because they don't need it if I get them out of the dryer right away but I do have the old fashion dresser scarves that I must iron.

  48. Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) says

    Hi Betty…you can usually find it in Bed Bath and Beyond and recently I saw some in a TJ Max.
    Lavender would be great for sheets and pillow cases since it is supposed to help you relax. πŸ™‚

  49. Great idea. Your table settings are lovely. I run a Bed and Breakfast on Lake Bridgeport, Chico, Tx. You have some great ideas here that would work well for us. Thanks so much for sharing.

  50. Found this just today…..what a brilliant and lovely idea! I usually use scented starch…..however, it is typically only available in lemon or lavender scent. Thank you for sharing!

  51. Love ironing, but that is not my comment. I see individual salts on the table, but not a master salt. Do you fill each one before dinner?

    • Yep, when I use salt cellars I fill them the day before the dinner party with a flaky finishing salt…something that will melt easily. Then, a few hours before the party, I uncover them.
      There are a lot of gourmet finishing salts online that are great for salt cellars. You can also find them at Williams Sonoma.

  52. pam ~ crumpety cottage says

    Susan, I’ve never heard of scented linen water. What a lovely and thoughtful touch for your guests. πŸ™‚ I love the idea.

    Hey, I forgot to tell you, I saw the cutest plates over at Amazon. They are Melamine but look like ‘paper’ plates and they come in spring colors with polka dots. Oh my, they are adorable. Right up your alley. Hee. (As if you don’t spend enough of your own money, now I’m trying to spend it for you) πŸ˜‰ Here’s the link. http://www.amazon.com/Pastel-Picnic-Dinner-Melamine-Yellow/dp/B00I81K7NI/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1430628838&sr=8-1&keywords=melamine+polka+dot Nineteen and change, prime. I think that’s a pretty good deal. I wish I knew if the colors were true, because they look gorgeous on my computer screen.

    Btw, the glasses on the table above are just beautiful. Do you still have them? Because I don’t recall you using them in a table scape since I’ve been hanging out here. I love them! Very elegant. They would be beautiful at Christmas with a red table cloth.

    This is a long shot, but you don’t happen to have a place you purchase frames for canvas art like oil paintings, do you? They are surprisingly hard to find. Just taking a stab in the dark, lol.

  53. pam ~ crumpety cottage says

    I was looking for some unbreakable plates to use by the pool and found those. I haven’t ordered them yet, mostly because they’re small and a couple of commenters said they have a gritty texture to them, but I sure do love the way they look, and I am not usually a polka dot fan. I love the waves in them that suggest they are paper.

    Gosh, once I checked those links I thought, I’ve seen those table settings before! Lol. Every Christmas now I think of your table set with the little houses and how you created an old timey ‘neighborhood.’ I just love it. It’s so beautiful and so cozy. I guess there are always so many pretty things to see I must have missed the glasses. Which is hard to imagine because they are gorgeous!


    • Pam, one of the lovely folks who reads BNOTP is going to recreate that village table for her table this Christmas. I hope she shares some photos so I can share them on the blog! πŸ™‚

  54. pam ~ crumpety cottage says

    Oh, what a fun idea! I had actually thought about buying some of the houses, (I found a great deal on them) but decided I already have pleeenty of Christmas stuff and didn’t need any more, lol. But I love that look too so I sure hope she shares it. Those little houses are a treasure. They put me in mind of Norman Rockwell and all our tours of “Main Street,” USA houses.

    And on a personal note, I finally got up the gumption to make an appointment with an endocrinologist about that hashimoto’s issue we discussed. They are so booked up, I’m having to wait three months to get in, AND the receptionist said she was excited to get that appt for me (someone had cancelled) because other wise, I’d be waiting over 5 months. Gosh! I sure hope it helps. It would be nice to feel better. πŸ™‚ Thanks for your support in that matter.

  55. I know this is an old post but im desperate. I have ben searching where to purchase this Linen Water spray and no luck. Specifically the 155 south luxury apothecary linen water Sweet Pea. I stayed a few weeks at my ex boyfriends mothers home years ago where she had this spray in the guest bedroom and i fell in love with it. I just found the brand name from the way the bottle looks on this post after search images for it through the years and now i cant find where to purchase this product on line. I live in Southern CA. If you have any ideas please let me know. Thanks Bernadine

    • I bought it so long ago, Bernadine, I can’t remember what store I purchased them in.
      On the back side of the label it says:
      Distributed by Truescents LLC
      P.O. Box13328
      Des Moines WA 98198
      Below the address is this telephone number: 866-877-2368
      You may want to try looking them up online or calling that number to see if by some chance they are still in business and can help you find it.
      Hope that works!

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