Source: Martha Stewart Living, May 1997
Two crisscross runners make an elegant tablecloth that protects a surface completely without obscuring the table. Here, linen in the palest green is draped over a small bedside table, but the idea could be adapted to suit any kind of table; one with shapely legs makes the best use of the tablecloth's design.
Linen (or other fabric)
Begin by determining the dimensions of the runners; on a rectangular table, the length and width of each runner will vary.
Add 1 inch to all sides for the hem allowance. Cut two pieces of linen or another fabric to these sizes.
On each runner, turn the long sides under 1/4 inch, then 3/4 inch; press and stitch down. Repeat on the short sides. Lay one runner across the other at right angles, with their centers aligning. Pin together where they overlap. If desired, baste together. Then stitch along the perimeter of the rectangle where they overlap, joining the two runners; use the hems on each one as guides.