Table Runner Uses and Ideas


When would I want to use a table runner?  Table runners cover about a third of the top of a table. Table runners can be used for both formal and informal settings to add an extra bit of interest to your table. They can be scrunched and topped with a center piece as part of your everyday decorating scheme. A very practical use of a table runner is to provide some protection to your table from hot dishes or candle wax incidents. Use them to personalize your space, we scrunched one in an art niche, take a look.

Table runners also offer nice decorating touches to buffets and sideboards.




Table Width
Table Length
Formal Table Cloth Size
Casual Table Cloth Size
Table Cloth Sizing Guide
40 inches
60 inches
70 x 90 inches
50 x 70 inches
40 inches
40 inches
70 x 70 inches
52 x 52 inches
36 inches
60 inches
60 x 84 inches
48 x 72 inches


More Table Cloth Measurement Guidelines

The distance that a table cloth hangs from the top surface of the table is referred to as the drop. A formal table cloth usually has a greater drop than a casual setting. A 5 inch drop is probably the least amount of drop that should be considered for a table cloth. An 8 inch drop is a good average drop for a casual setting. For a formal setting, the drop is usually around 15 inches. If you cannot  locate a table cloth with the exact measurements you calculate, select a table cloth a few inches larger. A larger table cloth will provide a greater drop; but, that is better than the table cloth being too short. The table below includes suggested table cloth sizes for common table measurements. 

How to Select a Rectangle Shaped Table Cloth

Let's pretend the light green rectangle in the diagram to the left is the top of your rectangle table.

Measure the longest side of the table to determine the length. Measure the shortest side of the table to determine the width.  Decide how long you would like the table cloth to drop from the top of the table. A drop of 6 inches is a good average distance for a casual table cloth.

To determine the size of your table cloth add the length plus the width plus the drop plus the drop. For example if:

  • Width = 40 inches
  • Length = 58 inches
  • Drop = 6 inches

The desired table cloth size would be:

  • 40 inches + 6 inches + 6 inches = 52 inches in width;
  • 58 inches + 6 inches + 6 inches = 70 inches in length.

Perfect fit table cloth size would be 52 inch by 70 inch oblong.

How to Select a Table Cloth for a Round Table          

Let's pretend that the light inside circle in the picture to right is the top of your round table. For a perfect fit round table cloth, measure across the top of the table. This measurement is the diameter of the table.

Next, determine how long you would like the table cloth to drop from the top of the table. A drop of 6 inches is a good average distance for a casual table cloths.

To determine the size of your table cloth add the diameter plus the drop plus the drop.

For example if:

  • Diameter = 60 inches
  • Drop = 6 inches

The desired table cloth size would be:

  • 60 inches + 6 inches + 6 inches = 72 inches round.


If you need a formal table cloth, the drop is usually longer, around 15 inches. For example if:

  • Diameter = 60 inches
  • Drop = 15 inches

The desired table cloth size would be:

  • 60 inches + 15 inches + 15 inches = 90 inches round.

How in the world do I figure out what size table cloth is correct? 

The most important thing to remember is that it is your table and should reflect your style. So, create the look that pleases you, hold your head high, and stand back and enjoy the look that you create!  Below are guidelines for selecting the traditional sized table cloths for both formal and casual settings.

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