If you cover your dining table so that it stays nice like I do, you may also dislike the really plastic vinyl feel of many of the waterproof, spill proof tablecloths. Also like me, you may dislike the need to constantly wash fabric table cloths, and the lack of water proofing and stain proofing of those cloths.
That's why I stick to using tablecloths made from modern oilcloth.
What is oilcloth?
According to Wikipedia (since I could not explain it better)...
Oilcloth, also known as enameled cloth or American cloth, is close-woven cotton duck or linen cloth with a coating of boiled linseed oil to make it waterproof. Historically, pre-Mackintosh, oilcloth was one of very few flexible, waterproof materials that were widely available. Leather was expensive—very expensive in large pieces—and required regular maintenance if often wetted. Oilcloth was used as an outer waterproof layer for luggage, both wooden trunks and flexible satchels, for carriages and for weatherproof clothing.
Also, "By the late 1950s, oilcloth became a synonym for vinyl (polyvinyl chloride) bonded to either a flanneled cloth or a printed vinyl with a synthetic non-woven backing." Baby Centre.uk
Cheap Vinyl and PVC don't drape quite the same as oilcloth, and really look cheap in comparison. Very specifically, PVC doesn't have the cotton base of the better vinyl and the oilcloth products, so it will definitely not drape as well, which gives it a cheap appearance.
Oilcloth/Vinyl of today can drape as well as fabric and feel soft, if you get the good stuff. It's not typically super high in price, being $25 or so for a tablecloth that will last you a very long time. Although, you can get even higher end tablecloths made from oilcloth/vinyl for around $70. I'm not really sure what the difference is, other than price. However, if you choose to get the cheap $4.98 tablecloths that are more of a seasonal fun pattern, I won't judge. I'm only sharing my experience and my favorite type with you today.