For a dinner party, only linen napkins will do. Don’t skimp and use paper napkins, that immediately turns an elegant dinner into a tacky affair. I prefer simple white napkins, however, make sure that they are not going to leave lint on any guests’ black clothing. You may want to keep a few black napkins prepared and on had for guests wearing black.
Get out your best linen napkins, (or invest in some that coordinate with the decor for your dinner) at least three days before your party, and check each one to make sure it is clean and pressed. If they have not been pressed, you still have time to do so. I like to do this on Monday before a weekend dinner party. That gives me ample time to replace napkins should I find any to be stained or torn beyond repair. You will want to iron them and starch them lightly for the best appearance.
It is not necessary to fold your napkins into an elaborate shape, but if that is your ‘thing’ go for it!