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Top 5 Tips for Saving on Wedding Table Linens

There are many details to think about when planning a wedding—a few of which may not be top-of-mind when first thinking about costs. The table linens are one example. Buying them at full cost can be a surprise blow to the low-cost wedding budget, but that need not be the case.
Tips for saving on wedding table linens ... with resources. |

Types of Table Linens

We are all familiar with table clothes. Floor length (or even longer) generally results in a more formal look, while shorter versions are less formal and more economical. Overlays are generally square pieces of material placed over round tables, providing contrast to the longer table clothes. Runners, sometimes used sans cloth, provide the same function as the overlays, but are strips of fabric that are most often seen on rectangular tables. Floor-length skirts attach with clips around the perimeter of an already-covered table.

Money-Saving Tips

1. Rent the table linens. While this will not likely be your least costly approach, it is a way to get more upscale coverings for less and save time in the process—an attractive option for an intimate wedding. You will no doubt be able to find local rentals in addition to the online companies that send and accept returns via mail.

2. Use linens available through your venue. Sometimes your rental will include the table coverings. If so, ask to see them so you know what to expect, and verify whether there is an additional cost. If you are pleased with both, you need not source them separately.

3. Buy new or used tablecloths and napkins online and resell them after the wedding. It is possible to find nice tablecloths online for around the same price as the fabric to make them, saving you both time and money. If you make the extra effort to sell them, the net cost could be very attractive. You can find some options through these links:

New tablecloths
New napkins
Used linens with free shipping

4. Make overlays or runners and resell them after the wedding. Because of the straightforward design, even those relatively new to using a sewing machine can make table linens. You may use polyester or a cotton-blend material or choose special occasion fabric for a different effect. Each of the following has a unique look (find event-appropriate bolts of each through the links):

Organza is a sheer, silky-textured fabric.
Satin is also silky smooth, but typically opaque.
Taffeta generally has a slight silky sheen but is crisper than either organza or satin.
Burlap, stiffer and rougher than typical coverings, is the “poster child” for rustic wedding fabric.

5. Buy table skirts and clips at discount prices online, then resell after the wedding. Find them here:


The above is an excerpt from the Dream Wedding on a Dime; 7 Secrets for the Budget-Savvy Bride ebook.

Jerry Woods

Monday 28th of October 2019

It's great to learn that you should rent your table linens at your wedding. My fiancee and I are looking to plan for our wedding soon. I'll be sure to rent our table linens for our wedding.