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Sometimes it takes a trip to a faraway land to discover what’s been right in front of you all along. In this case, we have a recent visit to Paris’ artsy-cool homewares and clothing store Merci to, uh, thank, for our introduction to MYDrap table linens, rolls of perforated tear-away napkins and placemats that are in fact sold at home and design stores throughout the U.S.

The company’s products are pretty straightforward: originally produced in Spain in the 1920’s, the rolls of 100-percent cotton textiles were targeted for the hospitality industry for their disposability and innovative packaging, but nowadays they make a great case as affordable cloth napkins that can be used on an everyday basis. Seriously, keep those unsightly paper towels off the table. Especially the ones with little duckies on ’em.

The linens come in five sizes and nearly 50 colors and patterns (starting at $27 for a roll of 50 cocktail napkins, available at MyDrap), plus they’re biodegradable, compostable and recyclable, so you can toss them after just one use — no guilt — or wash and re-use them up to six times. 

MYDrap napkins and placemats come in 5 sizes and 48 various colors and patterns. Thumbs up for the perforated, tear-away design.

Not your average towel: a roll of linen napkins would make a cool, design-forward host’s gift.