How to Make Tablecloths for Picnic Tables

Have you ever tried to prepare your picnic table for guests and as soon as you put your paper plates down, the tablecloth caught the wind and your plates end up all over your yard? If it's just the least little bit windy outside, it spells disaster for party table.

This project will keep your tablecloth where it belongs--on your table. It's quick and easy and saves the day when picnic time comes.

Measure the picnic table and add four to five inches to the length and width. Cut a piece of material to those measurements. You can buy material at a fabric store and even most Walmart Stores carry it. Try to get an outdoor type pattern or something to match the theme of your party. Make sure it is a good no iron, washable material.

Fold the ends or the material over, toward the wrong side, about 1 1/2 inches and then 1/2 again--tuck into the fold and iron. You may want to use some straight pins to hold the hem in place while you sew. The pins should face in toward the center of the material.

Measure the outside of the table, adding the sides to the ends. Subtract four inches from that measurement and cut the elastic to this measurement. Put a safety pin on one end of the elastic. Sew down one side of the material to create the hem. When you get to the corner, stop. Feed the safety pin through the hem, pulling the elastic behind it. Attach the safety pin there and sew the next side, stopping at every corner to pull the elastic through.

Sew the two ends of the elastic together when you get to the last corner. Tuck it in and finish the hem. When you put this tablecloth on the table, the elastic will pull the end under the table and it won't blow off.

Use Velcro instead. You can make your tablecloth the same way, but instead of using elastic, use Velcro. Stick the Velcro where you will be sewing your hem and sew right into the Velcro. Stick the other side of the Velcro under the table sides and ends. Put the tablecloth on and press the Velcro pieces together and the tablecloth is there to stay.

Things You Will Need

  • Material
  • Thin elastic
  • Sewing machine
  • Thread
  • Self stick velcro
  • Measuring tape
  • Iron
  • Straight pins
  • Safety pin


  • Get extra material and make matching napkins.