Damask tablecloth with firm, silky and bright patterns is appreciated by many for their beauty and elegance. Damascus is the name of the city of Damascus, a huge commercial and manufacturing center during the Middle Ages. Made of linen, cotton, silk, rayon, and blends of these materials, damask is woven by a centuries-old technique, initially imported from China. Care for a damask tablecloth by washing immediately, drying, ironing and storing it properly after each use.
Wash a damask linen tablecloth by hand in a large sink or tub after each use by immersing the tablecloth in water at room temperature. Add a small amount of mild detergent without bleach, and gently shake the tablecloth. Bleach white damask tablecloths with an oxygen bleach that contains hydrogen peroxide. Rinse the tablecloth by immersing it in clear water at room temperature. Rinse under a clear cloth, running water to remove any soap residue.
Place the tablecloth on a tensioned string chained so it does not wrinkle. Do not use clothespins, because they leave folds in the fabric. Keep the tablecloth out of direct sunlight so it does not yellow. Iron the tablecloth while it is wet for the best results, use the linen trim on your iron. Iron colored table cloths or embroidered damask on only the wrong side. Gently fold the tablecloth and store it in a dry and well-ventilated cabinet or on a shelf. Do not place any objects on the tablecloth.