My New Tablecloth

I really like tablecloths. I first bought one a couple of years ago when I was living in the Grange. The table was very large, so I bought a blue tablecloth to fit it. It added a lot to the kitchen there, though I didn’t use it as often as I expected because it would always get dirty fast. We didn’t have much counter space in that apartment, which made it a lot worse.

A little more than a week ago I got out my tablecloth and put it on the table in my apartment. I had to fold it over because it was so long, but it looked really good. The color complimented everything very nicely and made the kitchen a lot more pleasant to be in. I was really amazed at how well my roommates and I did at keeping it clean. It wasn’t until I finally did take it off to wash it that I realized just how much I liked having it. So I decided I needed to buy a new tablecloth that was the right size for my current table.

Today I went to Bed Bath and Beyond with that purpose. They had one particular style of tablecloth that I really liked, and they had it in a couple of perfect colors.

The price sealed the deal: it was only $15. This particular brand advertised that it would be stain resistant and resistant to absorbing liquids (because it was made of microfiber polyester). I think most tablecloths advertise that. I’m pretty sure that my last one did. It is true that it has never stained, but I use Clorox Oxy Magic (which deserves an entire blogpost of its own) whenever I wash my clothes, which means I don’t get stains on anything–so I’m not sure how much of its stain resistance can really be attributed to the tablecloth itself.

Along with my tablecloth, I also found cloth napkins that were exactly what I’ve been looking for: bright white with a subtle yet elegant design, and made of a cloth that feels perfect: soft and well made. They were also made of microfiber polyester, so neither they nor my tablecloth would ever need any ironing.

I was pretty excited about my new tablecloth and napkins. When I rang up at the register the very attractive cashier asked me if I’d ever had one of those particular tablecloths before. I said I hadn’t but that I was pretty excited to get it. She said that she has several and likes them so much she won’t use anything else. How could my purchase get any better?

I washed my tablecloth and napkins promptly after getting home and put the tablecloth on the table. It is a very dark navy blue and looks as sharp in my kitchen as I was hoping.

Several hours later, as I was eating dinner I decided I should probably see just how it behaved when I spilled water on it, so I timidly poured a very small drop of water on the tablecloth. To my absolute amazement and astonishment the water did bead up on the tablecloth and didn’t soak in at all. I poured a bit more on and none of it soaked in. I wiped it off with a paper towel and the tablecloth wasn’t even wet!

After pouring water on it several times I was so surprised at its amazing behavior I went and got my camera. I took pictures of about a dozen different water spills ranging from a few drops to large bodies of water. Check out these before and after pictures (click on any of the pictures to enlarge them).

Then I started making videos. You really need to check out the video I made below. I’ve watched it dozens of times and it still amazes me every time. This was filmed after I had poured several full glasses of water on the tablecloth and cleaned it off. After all that the tablecloth was still dry.

So then I had to find out how much it could take. I left a pool of water on it for over 20 minutes–it still didn’t soak in at all–it just sat there in a pool. At the end of the 20 minutes it wiped right off and the tablecloth was still dry.

So then I spilled some food on it (chicken curry) and let it sit for a minute. I wiped it off with a wet dishrag. It took a little bit of scrubbing, but not much. When I had cleaned it off the tablecloth finally looked wet for the first time, and it took it a little while to dry. After it had dried, the difference at the spot where I had spilled the curry was so subtle that the only way you can see it is if you stand at just the right angle and know where you are supposed to look, or if you pour water on the spot (it looks different, but still doesn’t soak in). No one would notice it. I’m sure that washing it (which I am currently doing) will get rid of the spot.

So now I’ve come to the same conclusion as the cashier: I don’t intend to use any other tablecloths. I have fallen in love with this one. I am so pleased with my new tablecloth that I will be buying another one just like it early next week, only this one will be black.