by Sue Runyon.
(Niceville, Florida USA)
After using big rectangles of tablecloths for a few shows, I decided to upgrade to custom fitted table covers to make things easier for set up and take down and to make my display look professional. Fussing with centering, leveling and pinning table covers was getting old. Since I use 5 ft tables instead of the standard 6 ft tables, and because I elevate my tables on bed risers to bring my jewelry closer to eye level, no standard size would fit.
Thankfully I have basic sewing skills so I did not have to pay hundreds of dollars to have someone else make them. Since I was making my own, I could be very particular with the details. I wanted a fabric that didn’t wrinkle much, wasn’t too casual or too fancy, had panels to allow access to under table storage space and to which I could pin my banner without damaging the fabric.
After much thought, I came up with these covers made from inexpensive panne velvet. You can usually find the panne on sale for $3.50-4.00 per yard and the suede-like, low-knap, crushed texture is perfect for covers for indoor shows and is washable. Panne comes in many colors. The covers can get folded and stuffed into a tote and come out months later looking pretty much like they did when they went in. I made three covers so I have enough for different booth space configurations.
The down side to using panne is that it is very stretchy, thin and light.
It was a big project, but the results were worth the work. After my first show with the new covers I can say they were a great success. The other vendors loved them and the customers just noticed the jewelry. Set up and take down were a breeze.