Back in my mid-twenties, I bought a vintage Kittinger Regency dining room table that came with two leaves. It seemed quite grown up at the time, and I just knew that I was going to host seated dinners for 14. After I moved into my condo a few years ago, I realized that this grown-up table was, well, a little too mature and staid. Not really my style anymore. And those dinner parties for 14? Turns out that 8 tended to be the maximum number of guests at my dinners.
So, I set out to sell the table. Have you tried to unload a Kittinger dining table recently? Nobody seems to want them anymore. It's a shame, really, because the table is really well made and actually quite attractive. But nobody wants something this traditional anymore. Realizing that I was stuck with the table, I took it apart and now use one half as a small breakfast table in my kitchen. The other half got moved into my living room where it serves as a drinks table, a repository for books, and at times a small dining table for two.
I'd love to find some type of cloth for the living room half as the table is a tad too dark brown for me. What I would love to find is an antique textile to drape over the table.
I'm absolutely in love with this cotton mezzara from Genoa, c. 1860s. It's available through Soane Antiques. That gorgeous shot at the top of the post is from Soane Antiques' website as well, and it shows the mezzara in the background. Of course, if I were to use something like this on my table, the overall design would kind of get lost. But still, it's awfully beautiful.
This is only a fragment of an antique Palampore from India, early 18th c., also available through Soane Antiques. Perhaps I could find a reproduction Palampore that would be large enough to use a cloth.
What about something similar to this Indian export 18th c. chintz panel from Cora Ginsburg?
Switching gears a bit, this early 20th century Chinese wedding blanket, available at Kathleen Taylor The Lotus Collection, might work as a more modern looking alternative to the more traditional Indian prints seen above.
Of course, it doesn't have to actually be an antique. I've thought a lot about Nick Olsen's hand-block print bedspread from William Wayne. It's really good looking. Why couldn't I use a bedspread as a table cloth? I may have to call William Wayne and inquire about one.