DIY Ombré Table Cloth

Now that Spring is here, I have been preparing for some artisan events and had this vision of ocean inspired ombré table cloths as a decoration. These table cloths would also be beautiful for any other event you have like picnics or birthday parties! The best part is this project is inexpensive! So, let’s get our DIY on!  

Materials you need:

  • 9x12 Canvas Drop Cloth or Sheet (I used 2 drop cloths to make an 8ft and 6ft table cloth)
  • Rit Liquid Dye (3 colors in similar color family:  light, medium, dark)
  • 3 Buckets
  • Salt (Rit instructs to use salt in the dye bath)
  • Water hose
  • Gloves (non latex is preferable)

First, I cut the drop cloth to the size I needed. Drop cloths and sheets are great materials for this project. I chose drop cloths because they were heavier and more opaque than a sheet. Next, I went to www.Ritstudio.com and discovered that you can mix your very own Pantone colors! They give you the recipe! They had my heart at Pantone. 

After putting gloves on, I mixed 3 different colors per Rit's color recipe to resemble various ocean colors, but you don’t have to mix your own colors! You can make it easy and buy premixed colors. The Pantone colors I mixed with Rit’s dye instructions were cabbage, grayed jade, and slate in 3 separate buckets.

She thinks she's helping!

She thinks she's helping!

I cut three pieces of scrap cloth and dipped them in to test the color and time it took to dye each section.

Starting with the lightest color, cabbage, I dipped the first section of the drop cloth for about 6-7 minutes and moved on to the second section. The second section was dyed in grayed jade and took about 8 minutes to dye. The third section was dyed in slate and took the least amount of time. Since this color was much darker than the others, I dipped the opposite end first for about 4 minutes and then quickly dipped the drop cloth in and out of the slate until I had blended it into the jade color.

To wrap this DIY project up, I laid the drop cloth flat in the yard, hosed it down with water, and let it dry in the sun. Be super careful to not let the dark dyes touch the lighter section because IT WILL BLEED. (I also dyed my Sperry’s blue in this process so make sure you wear something you don’t care about!) After it had dried, I washed it on a gentle cycle with detergent and cold water and tumbled it dry on low.  

Before Washing

Before Washing

After Washing

After Washing

This an easy afternoon project and a cost effective way to make a pretty table cloth!

If you try out this project, I would love to see your finished product! Please share it on Instagram with the hashtag #marisamade. Happy making!