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Skirted Tray Table




If you already have a tray, seek out a table of matching size. In a pinch, you can cut a piece of plywood the same size as the tray and place it atop a smaller table that sits under the skirt. For the skirt, which has the look of inverted box pleats at the corners, we used matelasse cotton. This skirt is made of overlapping panels that are not joined at the edges, so that the underside of the table remains accessible.


  • Plywood
  • Sewing kit
  • Scissors


  1. Step 1

    For front and back, cut two panels that measure the width of the table by its height, plus 2 inches on all sides (for seam allowance and hems).

  2. Step 2

    For the sides, cut two panels that measure the depth of the table by its height, plus 2 inches on all sides.

  3. Step 3

    For the corner panels that will mask the legs, cut four pieces 8 inches wide by the height of the table, plus 2 inches on all sides.

  4. Step 4

    Double-fold and topstitch the side hems of all panels (but not of the tabletop piece). Pin panels together so outer panels overlap corner panels; stitch 1 3/4 inches from top.

  5. Step 5

    Pin skirt to top piece, right sides facing and raw edges aligned; if necessary, cut a notch in the seam allowance of the skirt at each corner. Stitch 2 inches from edge. Place the skirt on the table to mark length, then hem.

Martha Stewart Living, May 2000



Reviews (3)

  • jvallas 13 Aug, 2011

    Also, when it says to join the side pieces to the top piece, WHAT top piece? I realize there must be a top piece you need to cut out - but it's not mentioned in the pieces required, nor its dimensions (I assume 2" wider on all edges?).

  • jvallas 13 Aug, 2011

    I'm just wondering if it wouldn't be easier to simply use one long strip of fabric into which you place pleats at each corner, rather than all the separate pieces that need hemming at each side?

  • Saranewell 13 Aug, 2011

    Pictures would really help...