Table cloth sizes: how to correctly pick a table cloth.


Ever since i started working in the banquet/event industry, i realized that the table cloth sizes are details I absolutely cannot forget when setting up a table. Somebody would not event pay attention to it, but i honestly TOTALLY disagree!

And i will tell you why.

Because a marvelous, precious table cloth is not going to be so nice on a table, if the size is not correct. In fact:

  • A short drop table cloth is improper, because it leaves the legs of the table uncovered.
  • A ’til floor drop table cloth, on the other hand, is not going to be good either, because it will hamper the guests’ movements.

And, obviously, that’s goes for events and home too!



To pick the right table cloth, i first suggest you to check the diameter of your table (if you have a round one).

table cloth sizes

As is previously said, the drop needs to be not too long, nor too short: if you look at the picture, in both cases, i gave you two different measurements for 2 drops.

The long one might be more appropriate for formal dinner or events.

For everyday use, family or informal dinner, i would say a normal drop, but of course, that is also a personal choice.

The situation changes a bit in case of rectangular tables.

Rectangular tables

Definitely easier than the round table.

25 inches of space for person is the minimum average space we must provide for every single guest: of course, this dimension depends also on the type of mise en place we are going to set – formal, informal, British, French etc – but assuming a formal one, perhaps British, i would say that 25 inches is not even going to be enough!


Well…Have you ever watched Downton Abbey? Because Downton Abbey is the quintessence of the traditional British mise en place, and if you have seen at least one episode of this awesome tv show, you will understand what i am talking about.

From Downton Abbey movie played on my tv 😀

In this particular scene, the table set up includes, from the left:

  • napkin
  • bread plate
  • fish fork
  • main course/meat fork
  • cake/fruit fork
  • Plate (in the picture you see only one, but usually there is charger plate, main course and bowl)
  • fruit/cake knife
  • main course/meat knife
  • fish knife
  • spoon for Potage o Bouillon
  • spoon for broth
  • glass for water
  • red wine glas
  • white wine glass
  • little glass for sherry

Now: i truly believe that 25 inches, for all that stuff, is not that much, don’t you think so?!

Anyway, if you want to know more about table and mise en place just follow me on Pinterest, or Fb or Insta. I will keep sharing tips ‘n hints about this wonderful world called “art of receiving” so stay tuned! 😉


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