Choosing tablecloth sizes for your tables is a mixture of knowing what you want your space to look like and knowing what the heck people are talking about when they are talking about table sizes and tablecloth drops. Here’s my little guide on how to select your tablecloths for your wedding or event.

What do you like?

This needs to be your first decision. What look do you like when you think of a tablecloth on a table? Do you like a full drop where the cloth sits against the floor, or almost to the floor? Or do you like a short overhang, so that you don’t have to worry about catching it on your legs when sat at the table? Maybe you like a tablecloth to drop half way between these so that it just rests on your lap. Once you’ve decided on this it’s just a matter of understanding the sizing.

tablecloth with full length drop

Understanding table sizes

It’s not as tricky as it sounds, honestly! Are you having round tables or square/rectangular tables? If you’re having round tables then the table measurement will be the diameter of the table – that’s the width of the table from edge to edge, straight across the centre. If you’re having square or rectangular tables then you will need to know the length and width of the tables, and that’s all. If you’re having several tables pushed together be sure to check they are all the same size. Some venues mix and match table sizes in order to get the best fit.

I take table measurements in feet and inches, and most companies will work this way. Tablecloth measurements will work on the same measurements. So when you call to order your cloths you will simply need to tell me what size the tables are and what drop you would like, and I can do the rest. Most tables are a standard 30″ high, but you should check this to be doubly sure of what you need.

What about the top table or other odd sized tables?

Now top tables are a slightly different matter when it comes to working out what tablecloth sizes you need, but the beauty here is that you can’t actually go too far wrong with it.

You really do need to know how long your top table will be for you to be able to work out what you need. It’s not enough to know how many people will be at the table because venues allow different amounts of space per person and this can greatly affect the table length overall.

Now that you have your table length have a look at our sizing table below. It’ll give you an idea of the tablecloth sizes available to you, and then it’s simply a case of getting a combination of cloth sizes to ensure your table is adequately covered. You need to allow enough for a small overlap where cloths join, plus around 15″ of drop on each end of the table.

So for example, for a 20 ft top table I might put together two 132″ long cloths. This would give me 264″ of tablecloth in all, which would allow for a small overlap and around 10″ of drop either end. If I didn’t think that length on the ends would suit the venue and I wanted some extra length I might change that to two 144″ cloths, or maybe two 108″ cloths and a smaller 90″ in the middle section.

The width of the cloth isn’t a problem if you don’t get it quite right either. With the top table you usually have the cloth sit to the floor at the front, but at the back it’s your call. Because the cloths are rectangular they won’t look odd if you slide them forward or back more, and actually it’s nice to have a shorter length behind the table – if you’re a bride you’ll probably have enough fabric to manage in your dress so do you want to get tangled up in a cloth too? Look at it that way and if the cloth isn’t quite as you’d planned it to be then it’s not the end of the world. Of course I want you to have the very best look for your event so it is something you can play around with yourself but you are more than welcome to get in touch and I’ll give you some guidance on what might work best for you.

Remember that you are going to have joins with this type of set up though, and this is something to consider covering. I would always recommend using a top cloth to sit over the joins in a diamond shape to make the front view of the table a little more attractive.


What size tablecloth?

Now that you have your table measurements and you know what look you would like have a look at our chart and it’ll give you an idea of what size tablecloth you will need for your tables.

Tablecloth sizing chart picture

Alternative options

There are of course lots of options for alternatives when it comes to tablecloths. For example, might like to use table skirting for the front of your top table or buffet tables. This gives a nice pleated look to the table front. You will need cloths for the top of the table but these will be smaller ones. You can also get lycra cloths for tables, which just stretch right over the table and sit tightly. Maybe not the look you’d like for a wedding, but would certainly work for cocktail parties. Adding swagging to your top table can also give you a totally different look to just plain cloths. I’m full of ideas here so if you’re stuck let me know.

HELP ME!!!! (aka get in touch)

Hopefully now you feel a little clearer about deciding on table cloth sizes, but if not it’s not a problem. Please don’t sit in panic, not sure how to get this sorted out – just give me a call or drop me an email. I’m always happy to advise, and I can come to your venue and give you a free consultation if you’d like me to (no pressure and no obligation of course). You can find my hire prices and options on the Table Linen Hire page but if there is something that you’d like that isn’t listed then please let me know and I’ll give you a quote.


Happy wedding planning

Terri x

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