Gray Linen Tablecloth on Table

Selecting Your Perfect Table Linens

There’s nothing quite like the positive energy of hosting a party. The buzz of people catching up, laughter echoing through the hallways, and, of course, great food. Whether you’re hosting a big birthday bash or a small game night with friends, entertaining is an opportunity to bring people together and wow your guests. While you’re busy serving up delectable appetizers and drinks, the last thing you need to worry about is the logistics of table linens. 

Fortunately, Linenforce has the highest quality, most stylish linen tablecloths, placemats, and napkins available to keep your party running smoothly. With practical features and chic style, selecting table linens can become the easiest part of hosting your friends and family. 

Why is Linen the Best Fabric for Tablescapes? 

Pale Blue Color Bordered Linen Tablecloth with Table Setting

Linen is the optimal fabric for tablescapes due to its timeless elegance, natural texture, and exceptional durability. Linen tablecloths, napkins, and placemats enhance the ambiance of any setting without compromising functionality. Linen placemats and tablecloths can be dressed up or down, so you don’t have to worry about keeping different sets of linens for different occasions. The only choice you’ll have to make is which colors you want to put together for each gathering. 

Aside from being effortlessly stylish, there are a few things that make linen a natural, practical choice for any sort of home décor. First, linen is absorbent, naturally wicking away moisture, so any spills or mishaps can be cleaned up quickly. This makes linen napkins a great choice for guests of all ages. Unlike polyester or other blended fabric napkins that are seemingly just for looks, linen napkins can help clean up spills in a snap. 

Perhaps our favorite reason we're fond of linen tablecloths, placemats, and napkins is because of the sheer longevity of the fabric. Linen does not break down, wear thin, or pill like many other fabrics. Instead, it only gets softer with each wash. No matter whether you choose to use your linen placemats and napkins every day or you pull everything out for special occasions, you’ll never compromise quality with frequent use. 

Determining Appropriate Size and Shape of Your Linen Tablecloth

Choosing the right size, shape, and style of linen tablecloth is exciting because different styles can convey different aesthetics and vibes in your home. There are different etiquette guidelines that can help you choose the correct size for linen tablecloths, placemats, and napkins

For more casual dining, your linen tablecloth shouldn’t be too long. Six to eight inches of extra fabric on each side of the table should be sufficient so as not to get tangled or stepped on if guests are serving themselves. If you’re aiming for something a little more formal, twelve to fifteen inches of extra fabric can add drama and elegance to your tablescape. 

Many people choose the same shaped linen tablecloth as their table. However, experimenting with different shapes of linen tablecloths can add a little style and character to your event. Try layering two rectangular linen tablecloths on top of a round table so the points come down around the table. Alternately, add a round linen tablecloth to a square or rectangular table for a fun new look. 

Etiquette Guidelines for Linen Placemats and Napkins

Aqua Green Plain Placemat Set on Dining Table

Using linen placemats and napkins is a great way to elevate the look and feel of your event and is great for smaller crowds. If there are fewer than ten guests, linen placemats are a great option to keep things organized and looking clean. Put your linen placemats about four inches apart so everyone has a little bit of elbow room, and then place your charger or dinner plate directly in the center. Fold or roll up your linen napkins and place them to the left of the plate, and you’re done! 

For larger gatherings, linen placemats can be used for lots of other things. Consider putting a few colorful linen placemats on the center of your table to create a mosaic look in your favorite color scheme. Not only do you have a pop of color and style, but you also have a designated place to put your food, drinks, or centerpieces. 

In the absence of individual table settings during a big gathering, try arranging your rolled linen napkins at the head of a buffet table in a pyramid for folks to grab from. This creates height and interest for your table, plus it guides your guests to exactly where they need to be. 

Can I Use Linen Placemats and Tablecloths Outdoors?

With organic charm, breathability, and overall versatility, linen tablecloths, napkins, and placemats make excellent additions to your outdoor soirees. Linen tablecloths add depth and texture to their surroundings, making them perfect to bring along for a picnic. 

Lay a large linen tablecloth out on the ground to create the perfect picnic blanket. Not only is it absorbent and easy to clean, but it makes your linen tablecloth multifunctional and, thus, even more economical. Adding linen to your next event is key for successful outdoor entertaining. 

How to Choose Your Colors for Table Linens

Optic White Plain Placemat Set Folded on Table

Selecting the perfect colors for your linen tablecloths, napkins, and placemats is one of the most fun steps in crafting your table setting. Colors play a significant role in setting the mood, reflecting the theme, and enhancing certain aesthetics of your dining experience. Before choosing the colors of your linen placemats, napkins, and tablecloths, consider your audience and the occasion. 

For a formal dinner, white is always a classic option. White linen placemats, napkins, and tablecloths create a clean, fresh aesthetic. Your food and drinks can really shine with white table linens, so they can be perfect if you have a big, grand dish to show off. However, a rich, bold blue or burgundy hue also conveys an air of sophistication and adds a luxurious and classy bit of color to the room. 

Finally, the combination of linen placemats, tablecloths, and napkin colors can help take your theme to the next level. For instance, a party to watch the big game can be even more festive with a linen tablecloth and placemats in your team colors. Or, rich reds, bright whites, and a forest green combination can make your holiday feast extra special. 

Creating the Perfect Tablescape Featuring Linen

Crafting the perfect tablescape with your linen placemats and tablecloths is simple, but the effect can really impress your visitors. The secret to a gorgeous tablescape is variety. Choosing different textures, heights, and colors are all great ways to create variety and add interest to your table. 

Always start with a linen tablecloth as your base to serve as the background for all your other elements. Next, create a centerpiece from flowers or fruits. To keep things simple and fresh, a big bowl of lemons, apples, or oranges makes a phenomenal, rustic-feeling centerpiece. Plus, you have refreshing snacks ready for after-dinner snacks. As another option, you can have a tall vase of flowers to add height and interest to the overall look.

Following your centerpiece, lay down your linen placemats. Something fun to try out is to have a neutral tablecloth or linen runner, then put down a different color linen placemat for every setting. This rainbow effect is exciting and inviting, and your guests immediately know they’ll have a good time because you have a fun setting. 

Options for Linen Napkins

Lilac Linen Plain Napkin Set

Finally, when crafting your tablescape, decide how you’d like to present linen napkins to your guests. Linen napkins are an opportunity to add even more style and flair to your table. Napkin rings of all different shapes and sizes can add new textures and colors to your place settings, and there are lots of creative opportunities there. 

If you want to stick with linen, a way to tie up your napkins could be with a curtain tieback. The variety of colors available can spice up your color scheme and add variety. If you want a traditional napkin ring, lots of other options are out there to purchase.

Some other fun ways we love to present linen napkins are: 

  • Wrapped with ribbon bows
  • Tied with twine
  • Folded into custom shapes

No matter whether you’re tying dainty bows or learning to creatively fold napkins, adding a linen napkin to your tablescape is the perfect way to top things off and tie the whole table together. 

How to Customize Your Linen Placemats and Tablecloths

Choosing the perfect colors for your linen placemats, tablecloths, and napkins is a great way to personalize your collection, but there are lots of other great options for sprucing up your dining experience and showing off your creativity. 

Monograms or other embroidery patterns can make your simple linens stand out and really represent you. Embroidering your initials, family crest, or a special motif onto your linen placemats and napkins adds a timeless, sophisticated appeal. Not only does it elevate their look, but with beautiful personalization, your linen placemats and tablecloths become heirloom-worthy. 

Another way to create visual appeal is to add lace, trim, or applique. You can choose to add delicate lace to the edges and maybe a small section in the middle of your linen tablecloth, adding a romantic touch to your already classic piece. We love the look of white lace on a white tablecloth; it adds a hint of interest and texture without taking away from the natural aesthetic of the linen. 

Other Uses for Linen Tablecloths and Placemats

Indigo Blue Linen Plain Round Tablecloth on Table

Using linen placemats and tablecloths for their intended purpose is plenty to keep you satisfied with your investment, but it never hurts to have a little fun and find some other creative uses for your everyday staples. 

With all the colors and styles available for linen placemats and napkins, they are practically begging to be made into art. Take a few linen placemats of all different colors and make a collage on the wall. This is a great way to make a big statement art installation for an affordable price, and when you’re ready to switch things around, there are tons of versatile linen placemats and napkins at your disposal. 

Another option that we love for linen tablecloths is for an outdoor movie night. Not only can you fashion a cozy, stylish lounge for your guests with your table linens, but a white linen tablecloth can even be used as a projection screen for your movie.


Three other ways to use your linen placemats, tablecloths, and napkins are:

  • DIY gift wrap
  • Bed canopy
  • Fashion accessories

Caring for Linen Tablecloths and Placemats 

Fortunately, caring for your linen placemats and tablecloths is very simple, but given the nature of their use, it’s important to understand how to clean them. Always dust off any crumbs that might be present on your linen tablecloths before washing, and if there are any severe stains, you can pretreat them with a bit of dish soap.

After your linen placemats and tablecloths are ready to be washed, stick to the following guidelines: 

  • Use only gentle detergents
  • Wash in cold or lukewarm water
  • Dry on low or hang to dry 

Linen isn’t picky; it’s super easy to care for! With the right washing techniques and by following the proper directions, your table linens will last for years to come and will continue to make your luncheons, dinners, and parties extra special! 

Should I Rent or Buy Linen Tablecloths

Green Olive Linen Plain Round Tablecloth

Renting may seem appealing at first, but it’s not the most economical option. One of the primary reasons people choose to rent linen tablecloths is because of the cleanup, not knowing that cleaning linen fabric is incredibly simple. The benefits of purchasing your own linen tablecloths are primarily that it saves time and money. Before you know it, they have paid for themselves, and you’ll never have to orchestrate a rental again. 

Building Your Linen Collection 

Linen is a wonderful fabric for all your home goods, no matter the occasion. In the art of hosting and decorating, the choice of table linens holds the power to transform your space and elevate your guests’ experience. From the timeless elegance of a linen tablecloth to the endless combinations of colored linen placemats and napkins, table linens offer a canvas for your creativity. 

As you begin to build your collection of linen tablecloths, placemats, and napkins, remember that each choice is an opportunity to showcase your personality and hosting style. Let those choices set the stage for special intimate dinners, grand celebrations, and everything in between. The inspiration behind Linenforce is to provide high-quality, 100% linen home goods for the regular consumer, and table linens are a great place to begin your collection. 

Back to blog
  • Alloy Gray Linen Duvet Cover With Ties on Bed

    How Linen Helps Keep You Cool

    With ultimate breathability and natural temperature regulation, linen remains the most recommended material for bedding. Create a linen bedding set from bottom sheet to top quilt, or invest in one piece of linen bedding—even a...

    How Linen Helps Keep You Cool

    With ultimate breathability and natural temperature regulation, linen remains the most recommended material for bedding. Create a linen bedding set from bottom sheet to top quilt, or invest in one piece of linen bedding—even a...

  • Pale Blue Linen Napkins Folded on Dining Table

    Top 5 Benefits of Reusable Napkins

    Every home deserves to feel special, and while they may seem like a small piece of that puzzle, the napkins you choose can make it happen. Luxurious, timeless, and reliable, linen...

    Top 5 Benefits of Reusable Napkins

    Every home deserves to feel special, and while they may seem like a small piece of that puzzle, the napkins you choose can make it happen. Luxurious, timeless, and reliable, linen...

1 of 2