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Adding a table runner is an easy way to dress up your table, and has a much more casual vibe than a traditional tablecloth. When shopping for one, you can narrow it down to just one that you really love, or get a few and change them with the seasons to freshen up your space. No matter what you decide, the best table runners are beautiful, durable, and easy to clean—and we found several options that fit the bill.
From light and breezy linen options that goes with any decor, to contemporary vinyl runners in metallic hues, these are the best table runners for any aesthetic.
Best Overall: Saro Lifestyle Juneau Table Runner
The Juneau Table Runner is a year-round decor piece that fancies up any table while still remaining versatile and casual. It gets major points for its herringbone design and neutral gray and ivory color scheme that works well with any decor, from farmhouse to modern and contemporary.
The fabric is a medium weight that feels durable and has a strong visual impact, so you'll want to keep it on your table through the seasons. And the fringed edges add a touch of style that can be dressed up or down, depending on the occasion. It comes in five sizes, from 54 x 16 inches to 120 x 16 inches, so you're sure to find something that fits your table well.
Best Budget: Solino Home 100% Pure Linen Table Runner
It may be budget-friendly, but the Solino Home Pure Linen Table Runner is anything but cheap. This easy-care, machine-washable 100 percent pure linen table runner is handcrafted, so no two are alike. The linen construction is light and airy and allows for subtle, natural wrinkles that add charm and a little bit of texture to your table. If you’d rather a table runner that lies completely flat, you can use a low-heat iron on the runner to smooth it out.
It comes in nine sizes and more than a dozen colors—from white to bright pink—so you have plenty of options for your at-home table decor. There are matching placemats and napkins too, if you want to dress up your whole table.
Best Burlap: Three Posts Morganton Jute Table Runner
If you want to add some countryside flair to your table, the Morganton Jute Table Runner is a great way to do that. The natural jute hue is contrasted with faded racetrack stripes, adding a subtle pop of color to an otherwise plain design. The edges are lined with fringed trim to create some texture and a more lived-in look that’s reminiscent of an actual farmhouse.
This table runner comes in two sizes (72 x 14 inches and 108 x 14 inches), and five accent colors (dark gray, green, red, blue, and a red and blue combo) so you can easily fit it with your other decor. Since it's made of jute, it's super easy to take care of—just give it a light shake to remove crumbs and spot clean if necessary.
Best Macrame: You and Yours Macrame Table Runner
If your style is more boho, the You & Yours Macrame Table Runner is an easy way to bring that vibe to any table, any time of the year. This handmade runner is crafted in India by skilled artisans that utilize traditional techniques, and is finished with fringed detailing that hangs beautifully off the side of your table.
Available in two sizes, it’s crafted from cotton cord and comes packed in a reusable cotton carry bag, so you can easily store it between uses. And because the cord is so thick, this runner can double as a heatproof mat for when you’re serving family-style dinners.
Best Crochet: Heritage Lace Crochet Envy Table Runner
The Heritage Lace Crochet Envy Table Runner brings a handmade touch to your table without forcing you to make anything yourself. The open crochet design highlights the table underneath and allows it to show through, although you could also place another runner underneath for a layered look.
It comes in two lengths—45 and 60 inches—and five colors, from basic white to more statement hues like Ginger Spice (burnt orange) and Fern (bright green). While it looks dainty and delicate, it’s machine-washable and durable, so you can easily clean it without worry.
Best Linen: Pottery Barn Linen Hemstitch Table Runner
Linen runners are a casual yet statement-making addition to any table, and Pottery Barn's Linen Hemstitch Table Runner creates the perfect friendly vibe. The hemstitch border is hand wrapped and embroidered by skilled artisans, resulting in a piece that's both beautiful and durable.
Available in three neutral colors—flax, white, and shell—you can dress it up with eye-catching placemats and or a bold centerpiece, or just leave it as-is for a more casual look. If you want to personalize it, you can add three-inch monogramming (for an extra charge) to the end of the runner.
Best Modern: Chilewich Vinyl Table Runner
Table runners may lean more traditional in nature, but the Chilewich Vinyl Table Runner puts a modern twist on the classic decor piece. It has a woven pattern and is made of vinyl that’s fade- and water-resistant, so you can use it on an indoor dining table or take it outside for your summer BBQs.
It comes in more than one dozen colors that range from neutral earth tones to metallic-inspired hues, so you can go as contemporary as you want. And while it only comes in one size—14 x 72 inches—you can cut it down to fit smaller tables without it unraveling or fraying (although doing so will void the warranty).
Best Christmas: The Holiday Aisle Gray Jadiel Festive Trees Embroidered Table Runner
The Jadiel Festive Trees Embroidered Table Runner is an understated way to add some Christmas spirit to your table. This double-layered table runner comes in two classic colors—white and gray—and features embroidered Christmas trees in contrasting colors, giving you a subtle pop of red that can tie in your other Christmas decor. It comes in three sizes so it can dress up most rectangular-style tables, and affordable enough that you won't mind only using it a few weeks out of the year.
Overall, we recommend the Saro Lifestyle Juneau Table Runner (view at Amazon), which has a neutral yet stylish design and comes in six sizes. For something more budget-friendly, we recommend the Solino Home Linen Table Runner (view at Amazon), which is made of durable linen and comes in 16 colors and nine sizes.
What to Look For in a Table Runner
Let your dining table be your guide as you shop for a runner. As a general rule, you want it to be about 12 inches longer than your table so that the edges drape nicely over the sides (six inches on each). If you’re using a table runner on top of a tablecloth, the table runner should be slightly shorter, although there isn't a hard and fast rule. Before choosing a table runner, make sure you measure your table and purchase accordingly.
The table runner’s fabric is a matter of personal preference, but as a general rule, formal and/or glossy tables work well with table runners made from polyester, silk, or satin, while cotton, burlap, and linen better complement wood or metal tables. No matter what, make sure you choose something that's easy to maintain and clean.
Since your runner will be part of your table decor, it’s likely that it will get spilled on and collect crumbs somewhere along the way. As far as convenience goes, spot clean and machine-washable table runners are a better idea than dry clean only. If your table runner is machine-washable, make sure you always remove it promptly to prevent wrinkles, or iron on low heat if you prefer a smooth look.
Why Trust The Spruce?
Lindsay Boyers writes about lifestyle, home, and decor for The Spruce. She has a keen eye for detail and knows how important it is to create a space you love. Much to her younger self’s dismay, you can likely find her watching home improvement shows on HGTV.
How long should a table runner be?
That depends on the length of your table. Table runners, like tables, come in a variety of sizes. Look for one that is as long as your table, with at least an extra foot of length so that the overhang drapes at least six inches on either end.
How do you set a table with a runner and placemats?
If your table is wide enough, and your table runner is narrow enough, you can set the table with a runner going down the middle that has enough clearance for placemats without overlapping. If you don’t, you might want to consider using one or the other, or using a table runner on top of a tablecloth. From a decor perspective, the runner is an opportunity to use a complementary or contrasting material, color, or pattern that will add texture and interest to the table setting and the dining room or kitchen as a whole.
How do you use a table runner?
A table runner is both decorative and practical. It can be used on its own down the center of a dining table to dress it up slightly without the formality of a tablecloth, and will allow your table legs to remain visible for an airier effect. Or it can be used as an extra layer on top of a tablecloth to set a formal holiday table, for example. You can use the runner as an anchor for candlesticks, a holiday centerpiece, decorative objects, or a fruit bowl that will double as a layer of protection for the table.