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The History of Tablecloths

Jun. 23, 2021

Whether you're a restaurant diner with discerning taste in fancy tablecloths and napkins, or you're dining without noticing anything on the table other than the food, you probably haven't given much thought to the history of tablecloths.


The history of tablecloths

The earliest historical account of tablecloths is attributed to a poet named Martial in 103 A.D. It is believed that tablecloths were used to absorb spills and keep the table generally clean.


In the Middle Ages, when people wanted to look as rich as possible, the early simple tablecloths were replaced with ornate ones designed to match the splendor of the furniture they covered. During this period, when everything was a status symbol, the tablecloth of choice for the wealthy was white, as this was said to indicate that the homeowner could afford a large number of servants to keep the white linen white.



There is a long-standing Victorian myth corrected by the use of tablecloths. While popular opinion attributes the creation and popularity of tablecloths to Victorian restraint - a time when restrained people covered the "bare" legs of their tables with tablecloths because they were shameful - this has been refuted by many historians. -This has been refuted by many historians. As in the early days, Victorian tablecloths were used to provide a layer of protection for expensive furniture.


Interestingly, the Victorian industrial boom greatly influenced the use and production of tablecloths and other table linens. The American cotton industry and garment manufacturing, as well as the birth of synthetic dyes, revolutionized the look of tablecloths.  


As the decades progressed, so did the style and production of modern tablecloths. From the Art Nouveau style at the height of the World's Fair in the early 1900s to the creation of synthetic fibers to enhance the original 100% cotton tablecloths, the humble tablecloth has achieved what it has today, but its primary purpose remains the same: to keep the table clean while enhancing its appearance.

Find a reliable table cloth Supplier

Shijiazhuang Milai Home Product Co., Ltd. was founded in 1999 in Hebei as a professional manufacturer of table cloth, sofa cover, table runner, apron, chair pad, bed cover, cushion cover, washing machine cover, placemat and other household products. With many years development we have modern factory buildings, perfect management system and professional team, and we are now a leading enterprise in the home textile industry. Our brand Milai, Jilida, Lanhaidi, Laiboni are well-known in China. 

Our main markets are in EU, US, Mid-East, Asia, South America, etc., and our products are very popular among our global customers.  If you want to get more information about the best tablecloths for sales, welcome to contact us.

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