How to Make a Cut Paper Tablecloth
A paper tablecloth with straight edges often looks dull. A cut-out border around the edge will instantly make it look more attractive. If the tablecloth is then laid over a slightly larger one in a contrasting color, the cut-out motifs will be highlighted. Choose as heavy a weight of paper cloth as possible – very light, flimsy paper tends to tear easily.
Once you have mastered the cut-out technique, working through several layers of paper, you can experiment with designs to suit various occasions. The perfect use for a paper tablecloth is if you are having a party or other function.
Paper tablecloth any size,
Tracing paper and white paper to make the pattern,
A pencil and long ruler,
Craft knife and sharp scissors,
Masking tape and dressmakers‘pins to hold layers together,
Iron and tissue paper to press cloth.
Making the Cut Paper Tablecloth
1. Enlarging the motif
Draw a grid of 2cm (3/4 in) squares on white paper and enlarge the motif as you see it in the main picture above. Add the bold guidelines at right-angles at the corners, to help positioning.
2. Tracing the motif
Fold the tablecloth in half and then into quarters. Match the bold guidelines on the pattern to the edges of the paper cloth and, using tracing paper, carefully transfer the enlarged motif on to the corner of the cloth. Remove the white paper pattern and tracing paper and place a cross on each section of the motif that needs to be cut out.
3. Cutting out the corner motif
Place the corner of the folded tablecloth on to a cutting board and secure with masking tape. Using a craft knife, and working through all four layers at once, cut out the areas of the bow and threaded ribbon marked with an ‘X’.
4. Cutting out the center bow motifs
Open out the tablecloth so that it is folded in half and draw two parallel lines between the threaded ribbon cut-outs. Mark the centre point and place the pattern with the knot of the bow at this point. Transfer the bow motif, remove the pattern and, working through both layers, use the craft knife to cut out the motif.
5. Cutting out the threaded ribbon
Mark off the ribbon sections at right-angles between the two parallel lines at about 2cm (3/4 in) intervals. Then mark every other section with a cross. Using the craft knife cut out the marked areas.
6. Completing the border
Unfold the cloth and re-fold in half at right-angles to the first fold. Placing the bow motif in the center and marking the threaded ribbon as before, cut out the marked areas through both layers of the paper.
7. Marking the edge
Fold the tablecloth into quarters along the original folds. Using the scallops already transferred as a guide, continue the scalloped edge to the fold checking that a whole scallop ends at the fold or that the fold cuts the scallop exactly in half. This ensures that the scallops are not distorted.
8. Cutting the edge
Pin the four layers of paper together between every couple of scallops and, holding the paper in your free hand, use scissors to carefully cut out the scalloped edge. Open out the cloth to press. Place tissue paper over the tablecloth and use a warm, dry iron to smooth out the creases.
Reference: The Country Look—Decor & Crafts