Ah, the tablecloth, bedrock of civilization! Not quite, but a tablecloth does unmistakably show care, and attention, and lifts mealtime to a higher level.
So what do you do when your table isn't a standard size? A tablecloth looks its proper best when it hangs evenly all the way round the table, so the ends aren't drooping or skimped, and there is exactly enough along the sides - no amount of twitching can make it work if it doesn't. This is why we make our tablecloths in custom sizes, on request (except when we are rushed off our feet).
Above: Intersecting quadrant seam
The cloth shouldn't be so long that the corners trail dangerously on the ground, nor drape over the chair seats, just asking to be sat upon. Too short, and the table looks strangely immodest with bare, vulnerable legs, so 15" is the longest drop we suggest, and 8" the shortest.
Above: Stabilized raw edge
Celebrations call for a beautiful cloth, and you can set the scene with a dramatic colour to set off your plates, or choose classic neutrals as the stage for your gathering - napkins can tone or contrast, a runner can focus the centre of the table, or cross it for a different edge. Once you have the foundation, you can build on it.
To lift the occasion try layering cloths, textured Orkney over a Smooth undercloth, and you can layer napkins as well, Smooth to cover clothing, Orkney to wipe your chin. Maybe you have a heirloom cloth which just doesn't stretch - will it work over a Smooth linen undercloth, straight on or at an angle? This is your chance to play. Have fun!
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