Get the Drop on Drop Length: How much should a tablecloth hang over the table?

Get the Drop on Drop Length: How Much Should a Tablecloth Hang Over the Table

What’s a tablecloth drop length or overhang?

Drop, drop length, or overhang all describe the length of a tablecloth that hangs over the side of your table. In the context of a wedding reception, you’ll need to decide how long you would like your table drop lengths to be in order to purchase the right-sized tablecloths. You’ll also need to know the sizes of your tables to determine the amount of overhang.

How long should a tablecloth drop length be?

A short drop is a length of tablecloth that hangs over the side of your table but does not reach the floor. While short drops are perfect for a dining room table or home use where you can showcase quality furniture, having a short drop for formal events is not recommended. After all, the view of rented table legs could detract from your formal and beautiful aesthetic.

A floor-length drop is a length of tablecloth that hangs over the side of your table and reaches the floor. Event planners and designers use floor-length drops to bring elegance to higher-end events such as a wedding or classy fundraiser.

A puddle drop describes a length of tablecloth hanging over the side of the table that extends beyond the height of the table allowing the tablecloth to puddle on the floor. Certainly a trendy, luxurious look, event planners often opt for puddle drop for tables not seating guests, such as a gift table or reception card table, so that excess cloth doesn’t trip up guests.

How Much Drop Do I Need for a Tablecloth?

Round Tablecloths Drop Length Calculation Example

We have convenient charts for easy tablecloth sizing which includes sizing for rectangular tables, too. But just in case you’d like to know, you can calculate the drop on a round tablecloth like this.

First, you’ll need to figure out the size of your round table. Normally, the name of the table includes the table’s diameter (the line that divides the table in half). 60” rounds (which seat 8 people) mean that the diameter of the round table is 60 inches.

Drop Formula

(Tablecloth diameter – Table diameter) divided by 2 = Drop Length

How-Far-from-the-Floor Formula

30” standard table height – Drop = How far from the floor the tablecloth will reach


(120” round tablecloth – 60” round table) / 2 = 30” Drop
30” standard table height – 30” Drop = 0 (i.e., the cloth reaches to the floor)
Note: If you have a drop larger than 30 inches, you have a puddle drop.

Looking for more information on tablecloth sizing?

We get it. No problem. Check out our Table Sizing Guide with convenient charts (where we’ve done all the calculations for you!)

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