How To Keep Tablecloth From Slipping [5 Tips & Tricks]

A well-dressed table often includes a tablecloth, but how can you keep it from slipping? We’ve researched to find out clever ways to keep this from happening. Each of these tips will help you keep your gorgeous table setting looking its best.

Here are five ways to keep your tablecloth from slipping:

  • Use a non-slip table protector beneath your tablecloth
  • Use double-sided tape or velcro
  • Hold your tablecloth in place with a heavy-duty centerpiece
  • Use table clips or tablecloth weights
  • Choose a heavier tablecloth

Let’s take a look at each of these solutions. We’ll also explore if you can leave your tablecloth on all the time, how long the drop of your tablecloth should be, how to keep an outdoor tablecloth from blowing away, and ways to shorten a tablecloth if it’s too long. So please, keep reading to find out more.

Round empty podium covered with rose cloth. How To Keep Tablecloth From Slipping [5 Tips & Tricks]

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Five Ways To Hold Your Tablecloth In Place

We’ve found five solutions to keep your tablecloth from slipping. Which one is the best choice for your situation?

Use A Non-Slip Table Protector Beneath Your Tablecloth

PVC mesh is available in rolls or in sizes that replicate tablecloth sizes. This material is put down first on the surface of your table; then the tablecloth is laid over it. The result is a tablecloth that stays in place while you dine. This is an easy and inexpensive solution.

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Click here for this on Amazon.

Use Double-sided Tape Or Velcro

Double-sided tape or adhesive velcro will work for keeping your table in place. This is another easy, cost-efficient solution. However, depending upon your table, you may not want to stick anything to it.

Glass tables could handle this no problem, but wooden tables might end up with some residual adhesive on the surface that detracts from the beauty of the furniture piece.

Hold Your Tablecloth In Place With A Heavy-Duty Centerpiece

A modern and fresh table decoration with the theme of circus and animals for a children's birthday party with pancake birthday cake, pennant garland, animal figures, balloon, stationery and flowers

Another way to keep your tablecloth from slipping and sliding is to weigh it down with serving dishes or an oversized centerpiece. A ceramic cake plate, complete with a delicious-looking cake, graces this festive table. For a very long table, you may need a series of centerpieces to keep the tablecloth from shifting.

Use Table Clips Or Tablecloth Weights

Another handy gadget available for holding your tablecloth in place are table clips or tablecloth weights. Table clips slide onto the edge of the table and keep the cloth in place. Tablecloth weights like those pictured here clip onto the bottom hem of the fabric to hold it down.

No matter how cute the weights, the disadvantage to this is they may bump into people’s knees if they are sitting at the table.

Click here for these on Amazon.

Choose A Heavier Tablecloth

The final idea for keeping your tablecloth from slipping is to choose a heavyweight tablecloth. These are usually marked as such. Sometimes they are lined with flannel. Sometimes they are simply a heavier grade fabric that drapes firmly on the surface of the table. So again, look for the words heavyweight when shopping for this type of tablecloth.

Click here for this heavy-weight tablecloth on Amazon.

Can You Leave A Tablecloth On All The Time?

If you have an older table that’s seen better days, you may want to keep a tablecloth on all the time. This is okay. The one thing to keep in mind is that you will want to keep an eye for spills and crumbs.

If liquid spills on your tablecloth, you want to be sure you clean underneath it. If your table is made of wood, liquid can cause staining or damage.

You also want to make sure you have a way to get up crumbs. For example, vinyl tablecloths can be wiped with a damp sponge. Or you might choose a combination of cloth tablecloth and vinyl placemats. This protects the area under your plate.

It’s also a good idea to choose a tablecloth that’s easy to clean should it get soiled. Most polyester blends are easy to throw in the washer and the dryer. Then they’re good as new again on the table.

PVC tablecloths like this one are often backed with flannel. The flannel is a soft surface to rest against your table and won’t cause any damage. In addition, the upper PVC will resist spills and stains and can easily be cleaned with a damp cloth or sponge.

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What Should The Drop Be On A Tablecloth?

The drop on a tablecloth refers to how far it hangs down from the side of the table. So whether your table is round, square, or rectangular, there will be a drop of fabric over the edge.

The general rule of thumb for his measurement is as follows. For casual meals, you want to keep about a six to eight-inch drop. For more formal meals, consider having a drop of about fifteen inches. This subtle difference can set the tone for your dining space.

What To Use If You Don’t Have A Tablecloth

christmas festive table with no people. Dining table with plates, wine glasses and candles.

If you need to dress up your table but realize you don’t have a tablecloth lying around, what else can you use?  The most obvious thought is to leave your table bare and dress it up with placemats, napkins, and a gorgeous centerpiece of wild things from your garden.

Table Setting For Romantic Valentines Day Meal

A table runner is another way to create some formality to your place settings. If you have an extra-long scarf, you could substitute it for an actual table runner. Or, if you have fabric from an old sewing project, stitching together a long rectangle to run down the center of a rectangular table is not so difficult.

stack of sweaters on a wooden table

You could always pull out an old blanket if you want to cover the entire table. Make each place setting neat and tidy. Add some candles or a centerpiece in the middle, and voila! Instant tablecloth.

A few other easily found alternatives are brown butcher paper, a shower curtain, or even a window curtain. All three of these things could substitute for a tablecloth if you needed them.

How Do You Keep A Picnic Tablecloth From Blowing Away?

If you’re dining al fresco at a picnic table, you might need some help keeping your tablecloth in place. You could, of course, weigh it down with heavy objects. Or, you could use clamps to secure it to the table legs. 

Clamps like this slip easily over the edge of the table and hold the tablecloth firmly to the surface of the table. You won’t have to worry about it moving at all with these handy gadgets.

Click here for a stainless steel set on Amazon.

What Do You Do If Your Tablecloth Is Too Long?

If you discover your tablecloth is too long for your table, what can you do? The good news is, you have options. Of course, the most obvious answer is to get a tablecloth that fits. But if you don’t want to spend the money or waste the tablecloth you have, you have more choices.

If you sew, you can also trim it and hem up the sides. But if you don’t sew or need a quick fix, you can iron the hem in place for the shorter length, then use a now-sew tape to hold it. Heck, even duck tape will work in a pinch.

This peel and stick tape adheres permanently when you press it on. No iron or heat is needed for this material.

Click here for this on Amazon.

No More Slip Sliding Away

We’ve gathered ideas for you; now, it’s up to you to figure out which is best for your tablecloth situation. Rest assured, though, whichever you choose will keep your table looking great.

If you enjoyed this post here at, please check out a few of our others below:

How Big Should A Tablecloth Be [By Table Size]

What Are The Best Placemats For A Round Table?

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