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Napkins shrink as restaurants economize

Napkins are shrinking at upscale and casual restaurants. (Bill Hogan/Tribune)

The dinner napkin today is a fraction of its former self.

The 30-inch square, which was considered suitable as lately as 25 years ago, is now likely to be 20 to 22 inches square in a restaurant, and 18 to 22 inches at home. In a reverse trend, lunch napkins, which used to stay a respectful step behind, at 14 to 20 inches, are getting larger — even on the best laps — so that you don’t have to own more than one set of napkins to get through the day. Get the full story »