Essential Reading before Shopping for Table Linen

While you cannot keep changing the home décor, crockery, and cutlery to please different kinds of guests, you can make them feel welcome and project your aesthetic sense with your choice of table linen. Given the importance of choosing the perfect tablecloths for every occasion, there are quite a few things you must know before going shopping:

The Occasion 

You must keep the occasion in mind for which you are buying the tablecloth as the right choice can significantly elevate the diners’ enjoyment. When entertaining important guests at a formal dinner at home, you will want to show off your refined sense by laying a tablecloth made of a rich fabric like silk, velvet, damask, etc. On the other hand, if you are hosting family and friends to a cozy session in the kitchen, you can opt for a gay checkered pattern or a color scheme in keeping with the season. Since the variety of occasions and the guest profiles is endless, it pays to think carefully about the choice of the tablecloth.

Size and Shape

Dining tables come in an incredible assortment of shapes and sizes, as do tablecloths. You should choose a tablecloth of a size that will cover the table surface elegantly. When buying, you need to also decide on the drop you want to have. While for a formal dinner, you will want a drop of 10-15 inches, you can reduce it to 6-8 inches for a casual occasion. The length of the drop is not fixed, which means that you can always buy what you prefer, but the more formal occasions do demand a bigger drop. If you are using runners on top of the fitted table covers, you will need to keep them the same length or shorter.

The Material 

Choosing the material of the tablecloth can be perplexing since there is such a large variety available. You can buy ones that cost a fortune to the disposable ones ideal for hosting a child’s birthday party. The best way of deciding on the tablecloth material is to go by the nature of the occasion and how you would like to present yourself. If you are hosting a formal dinner, you should choose a heavy fabric like velvet, silk, linen, or cotton. For more casual affairs, lightweight cotton, PVC, polyester, etc., are good choices. According to Silver Bobbin, polyester is extremely strong and resists stretching.


When buying a tablecloth for formal occasions, it is invariably better to stick to monochromes like white, ivory, or even deep colors like burgundy and black. It is important to pick a color that goes well with the rest of your home décor and does not dominate it. Since you must also ensure that your tablecloth goes well with the crockery, picking a neutral color like white or ivory is more sensible. You can also match your tablecloth color to your drapes or furnishings. You can be more flexible for informal get-togethers as you can choose bright colors and cheerful patterns in keeping with the season and age profile of the guests.