Quick Table Skirt

I want to share more about my trip to New York, but I was so proud of myself for actually completing a project before going back to school, I just had to tell you about it (I have a habit of starting things and getting distracted by shiny objects). And scouts honor, the whole thing took me about an hour start to finish, including time to dote on my little helper.

Here’s what I started with. I had a great rectangular side table I’d picked up at Goodwill for $10, but the corner of my living room needed a little more umph (and I needed a way to hide more of my shizzle when I crapshift). I decided a 36″ round table would be just the thing, but I didn’t have one of those. Time to get crafty. I went to Lowe’s and bought a 36″ round pine table top. Yes, I could have cut one out of plywood, but I didn’t have a chunk of scrap big enough and didn’t want to buy a whole 4 x 8 sheet for this one project. I plopped it on top of my Goodwill table and voila! Except that it was ugly. Time to cover this bad boy up.

Klassy, no? It sat this way for at least a month.

Klassy, no? It sat this way for at least a month.

I decided to cover the tabletop with fabric first, then add the skirt. Why? Because it required less sewing and gathering. I’m lazy like that. Since the top would just be a little layer of linen, I chose to leave the plastic wrap on the tabletop just in case anything wet was set down on it.

tabkeskirt2Then my trusty little helper and I laid it out and cut a “circle” of linen (I’m all about precision, folks). The “linen” is actually an inexpensive pair of Lenda curtain panels from Ikea. Next I pulled it taught and stapled all the way around.

tableskirtHere it is all covered, stapled, and plasticky. Shhh. Don’t tell anyone what it looks like underneath. I’ve learned over the years that I prefer manual staple guns to electric. Seems nutty, but Black and Decker makes a great one that uses physics in a clever way so that it doesn’t require herculean strength to operate. And using a manual version doesn’t require that you drag out an extension cord every time you use it.

Now cut out the skirt that will be stapled on later. I laid out the curtain panel lengthwise so that I could use the hemmed edge as the bottom of the skirt. Sneaky, no? The hemming is done for you.

Time to gather the panels for the skirt. And here is my secret weapon.


Buh-BAM. Super thin elastic.

I lay the thin elastic down and zig-zag over it. Essentially you are making a “casing” for the elastic with your zig zag stitch. You can also use heavy gimp, but the elastic makes the gathering job even easier.

thableskirtgatherNext, gather up the skirt panels by pulling on the elastic thread and distribute the gathers evenly. You are nearly done. Now all you have to do is staple the skirt onto the tabletop (from underneath), and you’re done!

tableskfinishedThis technique works on any shape of table that you may have or that you can dream up and cut out of plywood. You can do it, people!




5 thoughts on “Quick Table Skirt

  1. Pingback: Our Living Room | Chez Moi

    • I don’t feed it through the machine. I do leave it on the little post for holding thread, but because it makes it easier to corral. Before putting the presser foot down, I lay the elastic right in the middle (where the needle WOULD stitch if it was on a straight stitch setting) and zig zag right over the elastic. I hope that helps. Let me know if you need more detail or, better yet, come to your house to show you! 🙂

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