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Outdoor Tablecloth with Weighted Corners: It's Waverly Week!

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Dinner - good. Dinner with friends - better. Dinner with friends outside around a beautifully set table - best. Nothing spices up your outdoor living space more quickly than a new tablecloth. Ours is fast and easy, but also unique with a center contrasting panel that acts like a built-in runner and secret pockets behind each corner. Use these corner pockets to slip in weights that can help hold the tablecloth in place when gentle summer breezes start to blow. The bold Waverly Sun N Shade fabrics we used will keep the tablecloth looking great all season long. 

Sun N Shade fabrics by Waverly are designed to be antimicrobial, mold/mildew resistant, and resistant to sunlight fading for up to 1,500 hours. And best of all, they resists soiling. Find out more in our Waverly fabric care article, which details steps for spot cleaning, extra protection, and even how to machine wash your project.

A solid rectangle certainly qualifies as a tablecloth, but when you have so many great colors and patterns from which to choose, it's more fun to blend two or more fabrics for a more dramatic result. We combined the whimsical Pom Pom Play Peachtini with a bold multi-colored chevron: Waverly's Panama Wave Sunset. Of course there are hundreds of options from which to choose to best match your outdoor living vision. As we did for our pretty chair cushions, below are a few additional pairings we thought were wonderful. We've included the name of each fabric as a caption to make it easy to locate from your favorite Waverly resource.

We used Dritz Drapery Weights as ballast in our corner pockets, but the pockets are generous enough to accommodate many different heavy items, even rocks.

Our sample outdoor table was 96" long x 40" wide. Our tablecloth finishes at 116" x 60", allowing for a 10" drop all around.

Leave a comment below to let us know your favorite dish to bring to an outdoor gathering. Someone in our Sew4Home family is hosting a casual outdoor wedding this summer and would love to hear your ideas.

Our thanks to Waverly for sponsoring this week's series. You can find Waverly fabric at fine in-store and online retailers everywhere, including Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores. We also invite you to follow Waverly on Instagram, Pinterest and Facebook.

Sewing Tools You Need

Fabric and Other Supplies


As mentioned above, our instructions and yardage are for a 96" x 40" table. We've given you measurements for how we cut our pieces to fit our table. Proportionately adjust as needed for your table.

Getting Started

  1. From the fabric for the outer panel (Pom Pom Play Peachtini by Waverly in our sample), cut TWO 117" x 24" panels. 
    NOTE: We have a good tutorial on how to cut large panels using a rotary cutter.
  2. From the fabric for the inner panel (Panama Wave Sunset by Waverly in our sample), cut ONE 117" x 15" panel - or - fussy cut three 15" panels and seam together to create the final 117" panel. We have a step-by-step tutorial on seaming together large panels for a great finished look
    NOTE: Because we used the same fabric for today's tablecloth and yesterday's chair cushions, we had many yards from which to work and so could cut our inner panel as one strip. The yardage shown above is for the three panel seamed version described above. 
  3. Also from the fabric for the inner panel (Panama Wave Sunset by Waverly in our sample), cut FOUR 5" x 5" squares.

At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board

Assemble the panels

  1. If necessary, seam together your inner panel segments to create one 117" x 15" strip.
  2. Pin an outer panel right sides together along each 117" side of the inner panel. 
  3. Stitch together, using a ½" seam allowance.
  4. Because we used the tough Waverly Sun N Shade fabric, our tablecloth is not lined. We finished both long seams with an inside flat felled seam. 
  5. We have a full tutorial on flat felled seams, but to summarize: first press open the seam.
  6. Trim back one side of the seam allowance.
  7. Fold in the uncut seam allowance edge to meet the cut seam allowance edge. Press in place, then fold the entire allowance to one side (we pressed toward the outer panels). Press and then pin in place.
  8. Edgestitch along the fold, giving you one visible seam on the right side and a nicely finished seam on the inside.

Make pockets and hem all around

  1. Find the four 5" x 5" squares. Fold each in half to create a triangle.
  2. Create a ¼" double-fold hem all around the tablecloth. To do this, fold under each edge ¼" and press. Fold under an additional ¼" and press again and pin. Or, you can press all around ½", then roll the raw edge back in on itself. The result is the same: a small double fold has concealed the raw edge. 
  3. Un-pin at each corner so the fold lines are visible. Clip off the tip of each corner.
  4. Slip a folded triangle into position in the corner, aligning the raw edges of the triangle with the inner fold of the hem. Pin in place along the folded edge of the triangle.
  5. Refold the hem into position over the triangle pocket. Folding in the corner first then the sides to create the clean mitered corners. 
  6. Repeat to insert a triangle into each corner hem.

    NOTE: If you are new to this technique, take a look at our full tutorial on narrow hems with clean corners for step-by-step instructions. 
  7. If necessary, re-thread the machine with thread to best match the panels in the top and bobbin. 
  8. Using a Quarter Inch Seam foot if possible, stitch the hem in place all around.
  9. Go slowly and pivot around each corner to keep your seam straight as you stitch through the multiple layers at the corner pockets. Remove pins as you go. 
  10. Insert weights and get ready to dine in a soft summer breeze.


Project Design: Alicia Thommas   
Sample Creation and Instructional Outline: Debbie Guild



Comments (6)

Mary H said:
Mary H's picture

I wish I could help with a dish to take to the wedding.  My favorite is our town's oldest restaurant's homemade macaroni salad.  They sell it by the pound and I always take that.  Wish I knew their recipe!

Mary H said:
Mary H's picture

What can i say--you all are amazing!  When I read the title, "Outdoor tablecloth with weighted corners" my first thought was, "won't that damage my washing machine when I wash it?"  Then I read on about the corners and inserting weights--GENIOUS!!  I just LOVE THIS WEBSITE!  Thank you S4H!!

Patty Ward said:
Patty Ward's picture

I absolutely love this outdoor fabric!  I've made market bags galor, and just recently made a beach Matt with attached pillow for my Granddaughter, then found a better pattern on this site.

as far as a favorite recipe for a picnic, we love this delicious potato salad:  cook 5 pounds of yellow flesh potatoes with skins on until fork tender.  Cool on a rack until you can handle them.  Peel and cut into small chunks.  Place in large bowl.  Pour a 16-ounce bottle of creamy French dressing over the potatoes and toss to coat.  Cover with foil or plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. Next day, cut up whatever veggies you like to put in salad, e.g. Celery, carrots, green, red, or any color pepper and a little onion.  Cook several hard boiled eggs (I used 7) and chop them and put in salad.  To finish, mix in mayonnaise or Miracle Whip and add salt, pepper, garlic powder to taste.  Also add about 1-1/2 teaspoons dill weed and mix all well.

Sewandsewon said:
Sewandsewon's picture

Now for the table cloth.  OUTSTANDING.  This solves the problem.  AND I love the pockets.  EASY.  Thank you Sew4HOme and Waverly.  

Sewandsewon said:
Sewandsewon's picture

I used to be a wedding co-ordinator assistant.  The most favorite thing was the carved watermellon in the shape of a basket with fresh fruit salad inside.  Then a stacked plates made to "look" like a wedding tier cake with pre-made sandwiches. Another Bride wanted large trays of doit yourself sandwiches, so we made fancy trays of rolled lundheon meats and cheeses on trays with the bread, rolls, and crackers in seprate baskets.  At each different wedding we rolled the napkins around the knife,fork, spoon and tied them with the "Bridlal colors" ribbon.  The fruit punch was jazzed up with frozen fruit in the ice cubes.  (this can be made right now and frozen until the needing)  

Savannagal said:
Savannagal's picture

Thanks for another great tutorial.  One of my goto's for summer is an asian ramen noodle salad. There are many similar versions online. The only thing I do differently is that I use garlic flavored vinegar. Good luck.

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