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Have you ever found yourself in a position where you needed a really large circle (or several really large circles) of cloth and yet the pattern you had just been using to make these circles inexplicably disappears?  No?  Well, I have.  And should you ever find yourself in a situation requiring a large cloth circle and you have nary a pattern around with which to make it, you can be thankful that you’ve read this tutorial on how to cut a very large circle out of cloth without a preset pattern.


  • enough cloth for your really large circle
  • tape measure
  • scissors
  • straight pins
  • iron/ironing board


  1. Determine how large you need your circle to be.  I needed a circle that was 20″ in diameter.  That means the circle has a radius of 10″.  (You know, d=2r.)
  2. Fold your cloth into quarters, making sure that each side is at least the length of the radius of your circle.  This way you only need to draw out a nice arc that is a quarter of the circle, instead of drawing four nice, perfectly matched arcs to make a circle.
  3. Iron down the creases.  You’ll want nice, sharp creases to get a cleaner, circle-ier circle.
  4. With the beginning of your tape measure firmly fixed on the corner of the single fold, mark out the radius along the cloth.  The more marks you make, the more accurate your circle will be.  Also, be sure that the beginning of your tape measure is in the correct corner!  You want all the loose edges away from the beginning of the tape measure.
  5. Connect all your marks in an arc.  Or don’t if you think you can eyeball it.
  6. Pin all layers of the cloth together near the edge, making sure that everything is smooth and even, and cut along your mark.  If you don’t pin, you may get a very strange looking circle indeed.
  7. Unfold your freshly crafted circle and iron out the creases, if so desired.

I had actually doubled up the cloth and made two 20″ diameter circles at the same time.  This is really thin cotton though.  I wouldn’t recommend doing that if you’re working with heftier cloth.  Your circles will come out slightly oblong and be different sizes.

Incidentally, right after I took all the pictures for the tutorial, I found the pattern I made for 20″ circles.  It was sitting smugly on my bookshelf the entire time.  So annoying.  Also, you could do this with basically anything out of which you need to make a large circle.  You might want to leave the ironing steps out for things like paper and stuff, though.

Why do I need such large cloth circles, you ask?  It’s a secret.  But my secretive projects are nearly finished.  So…soon…soon shall be the reveal…



  1. Thank you for your tutorial. I wish I only needed a 20″ circle. My problem is cutting down really large table cloths that hang down to the floor into ones that only hit the seat of a chair. I think if I lay them out on the floor and do the same, it might work ok.

    Sandy K

    • Folding the tablecloth into quarters and then laying it out on the floor would work. Actually, since your tablecloth is already round, it would probably be easier to measure. You could just take it up from the existing edge however much you wanted.

  2. I wish I had found this tutorial before I tried to cut out circles (skirts) for my dress! mine was rather… shaky, lets say. requiter a lot of work later on. I am still happy though, I have to cut half-circle now. with this, I hope for success! the ‘r’ I need is way more than 10”, though ^_^

  3. Thank you, I knew what I needed to do but I wanted confirmation and your clear instructions did just that.

  4. Thanks so much for posting this. I wanted to make both a tablecloth and a tree skirt. Great tutorial!

  5. Wonderful idea!

  6. Thank you this was exactly the help I needed

  7. Thank you so much! I need two 26″ circles and this is very helpful.

  8. Thank you ! 😘 That was the perfect ratio of info/tutorial pix to “hey, I’m not a rocket scientist either” vibe. You kindly left all the smarmy smug out, replacing it with empathetic humor. Again, thank you ! Now ! I’m off th cut my large circle with the powerful confidence you have perfectly instilled… ❤️👌🏽

  9. Had to cut a circle that was 100 cm diameter. Tried with compass pencil and string but didn’t work out. Found your way and voila! It was so easy. Thank you!

    • Another easy circular template is to purchase a cheap round plastic tablecloth.(dollar tree).I use this as a template to cut down large tablecloths to fit my patio table. !. much cheaper and last longer than a template found at the fabric store.

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