Whether you’re restocking your store, or refurbishing a hotel, restaurant or commercial facility, choosing new table linen can be daunting. There are masses of online stores, with a huge variety of products on offer. Your task is to choose to the right tablecloths, placemats, coasters, napkins and table runners for you. Not to mention the right supplier. But how? And how can you do it for the right price?
From the size and material to the service on offer, there are a number of key factors to consider. They will make your search easier and help you make the right choice without any hassle.
Read on as we look at 7 crucial factors when buying table linen. Enjoy!
1. Finding the right material
Table linen is something that gets seen and used every day, no matter what industry you’re buying for. That’s why it’s essential to get a material that not only looks, but also feels right for guests, customers or clients. So, what are your options?
When it comes to table linen, the two most popular materials are cotton and polyester. Both are affordable materials, which are easily manufactured and come in a wide range of sizes, colours and patterns. The main distinction is that cotton has a more casual look and feel, ideal for everyday home use, while polyester’s silkier quality can also be used in more formal settings.
Care is another difference. Potentially the biggest downside to cotton is that it’s prone to shrinking when washed. Polyester, on the other hand, is renowned for its easy-care quality.
You can also choose from more specialist materials such as silk and vinyl. Vinyl table linens are generally used outdoors, while silk is perfect for formal events. While great for specific events or purposes, the main downside of these materials is that they lack versatility.
2. Measuring your table
It’s easy to get caught up in the maze of table linen shopping. After hours of searching, you find a bargain and order hundreds of the same item – only to find you’ve got the wrong size or even the wrong shape for tablecloths. Don’t make this mistake. Here are some essentials when it comes to measuring your table and making the right choice:
- Shape (tablecloths only) – You’re probably well aware of the shape you need. Tablecloths come in both oblong and round shapes. What’s important, however, is to check the product you’re buying to make sure it matches.
- Measuring for tablecloths – Start your measurement by measuring the length and width of the table’s surface. Get the drop right by sitting at the table and measuring the distance between your legs and the table top, which should be around 20cm. Add this on to each of your measurements.
- Measuring for table runners – Table runners are generally between 10-15 inches wide. They should be around a third of the width of your table. Measure the width of your table – opposite to the direction the table runner will sit – and divide this by three to get a rough estimate of the width you need. As for length, table runners should hang over around 15 cm over each end of the table. So, measure the length of your table and add 30cm.
- Placemat size and shape – Placemats vary in size from 35 x 50cm, to smaller 20 x 30cm. Or from 50cm to 20cm for round placemats.
3. Always read the product description
It’s one thing choosing the right material and size – it’s another finding, selecting and purchasing them. Table linen suppliers often stock multiple sizes, colours and even material variants of the same product. So, it’s essential that you check – and double check – the product description before you buy. You’ll find that this saves you plenty of time and effort, removing the need to return and re-order products.
4. The right returns policy
Speaking of returns… It’s not always as easy as you might think. While you may be used to hassle-free, cost-free returns that take care of everything, some companies simply don’t offer this kind of service. But once you’ve made that purchase, you’ve essentially agreed to their returns policy – which could be that they just don’t accept returns.
The solution? Make sure you’ve checked a supplier’s returns policy before making any purchases. It’s easy to make mistakes when you’re buying table linen – especially in bulk. So, ideally, you want a store that accepts returns for free, and will take care of the process. Whether it’s coasters or table runners, you don’t want to be stuck with the wrong product – and you shouldn’t need to pay to send it back.
5. Request samples first
Even with quick and free returns, you ideally want to get it right first time. And some things you can’t alter when you send things back are the quality, material or colour of the product. The solution? Get some free samples first. That way, you can check that the material and colour for yourself. Remember, pictures online aren’t always a true reflection.
6. Free delivery
Keeping costs down is a priority for every business. That doesn’t mean to say you’re not willing to invest, but you want every penny to go towards the quality of the product, rather than unnecessary extra cost. With that in mind, you want to look for a supplier that offers free delivery.
Is this unreasonable? Not really – you will find that most good retailers offer free delivery on larger orders, with some even offering it as standard. Be sure to check whether this covers your address, however, especially if you are ordering to another country.
7. Getting the price down
Everyone loves a bargain, but there’s a fine line between buying cheap and buying poor quality. You don’t want to end up buying twice because products look and feel cheap, or don’t stand the test of time. So, how can you keep the price down without impacting on the quality of your table linen? Here are some tips:
- Added extras – As discussed, things like free delivery, free returns and free samples help keep the cost down when you’re ordering table linen
- Faux materials – Want the silk-look without the price tag? Faux materials can provide exactly that. Using polyester blends, they can create the perfect appearance, while maintaining affordability and easy care.
- Go wholesale – Wholesalers sell goods in large quantities for lower prices. If you haven’t already, consider them when you’re looking for table linen. Don’t worry – they’re not just for massive orders on behalf of huge companies, some wholesalers cater for smaller companies and individuals too.
Get the right table linen for you with Homefords
At Homefords, we offer a simple, stress-free way to buy wholesale table linen. Our site includes everything from tablecloths and runners to placemats, coasters and napkins, with a range of styles, colours and sizes available. Quite simply, we’re a one-stop table linen shop for businesses of any size.
With free samples, free UK delivery and a comprehensive returns policy, we cover all bases to make things easier for you. Take a look at our full range of table linen today, and be sure to use our live chat if you have any queries.
New table linen – in stock now
Here are the latest dining products added to Homefords. Take a look! And don’t forget to get in touch if we can help with anything.