Saturday, November 12

Guest Tablecloth Update

It’s been almost three years since the first embroidered name was added to my grandmother’s tablecloth-turned-guestbook.


But I pulled it out again last weekend when we had some neighbors over for coffee on Sunday afternoon.


And I’ve been embroidering the new names in spare moments throughout the week (e.g. while waiting in the preschool pickup line or watching Buck on netflix).


After all, I want it done and washed and ready for Thanksgiving when my family will all be here again. I wonder how much bigger those little hands have gotten.


Some people leave simple marks.


Some get more ornate.


And some add messages along with their name. (Oh, how I was tempted to use Viking purple on this Packers fan’s note!)


Those who come back after their first visit have options. They can sign again elsewhere.

Or they can add something to their original spot. (Note the three different colors?)


Or I can add something to their original spot for them. Either whatever strikes my fancy…


…or something that aligns with their interests.


Once I’m done with the names, using the same color floss, I also add a little note somewhere along the border, recording the date and event.


Hmm, looking at the photo above, I notice two things:

  1. We sure eat raclette a lot when we have friends over. (Makes for an easy peasy dinner party when you don’t have to worry about cooking the food before the guests arrive.)
  2. I need to get better about remembering to pull this out! There are so many times I forgot! Including two other times this week alone!

So if you ever come over to my house for a meal, and you don’t see this on the table under all the dishes, REMIND ME TO GO GET IT! : )



  1. This is such a fabulous tradition! I love everything about it!

  2. Oh K! I love this! I know I've seen it once but it's so nice to see it again. So beautiful! And so beautifully photographedWe have to come over sometime again soon and get our names on there!

  3. I love the idea of a guest tablecloth!

    And I need to see that movie.

  4. That is a great idea! Can it stand a lot of washings?

  5. Thanks, ladies.

    TwoLuLa, yes, it seems to be holding up just fine. I think I've washed it after every use so far. And down the road, if the cloth starts to get a little threadbare in places, I'm just going to sew some patches on. I figure that'll just add more "character." : )

  6. this is such a great idea! i particularly like how you can see the hand size grow and how people can add on to what the did in the past. but i would just be too afraid to use it ever again and get it all mucked up! :) lisa

  7. Yeah, Lisa, I'm LOVING embroidering the new, larger hands -- I'm almost done with my first one. As for mucking it up, we spilled red wine, gravy, cranberry sauce, and who knows what else. I doubt that'll all come out in the wash, but it doesn't matter -- you don't really see the stains. And I've considered embroidering designs right on the stains, to commemorate the super food we ate. : )

  8. that's a great idea! the food's almost as important as the people, right? love it! :) lisa

  9. Love, love, love this!!! I am buying a cloth tomorrow and we'll start this on my mom's birthday in two weeks. My absolute favorite idea ever!

    1. Enjoy, Kim! Just keep in mind -- either you need to be a fast embroiderer, or an infrequent host. I'm about 4 events behind right now! : )

      Sometimes (especially when I'm having back-to-back parties) I cheat and put it on the buffet table instead of the dining table -- less chance of spills that way, so no need to launder between events...



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