I often have people ask me about how to decide on the right quilt size for their needs. The truth is, people can use quilts for many different purposes, not just to cover a bed. A quilt size can range from doll quilts to California King sized quilts and every size in between. And, while a bed cover is a legitimate purpose for a quilt, there can be so many more varied reasons for different quilt sizes.
Of course, bed quilts are designed to fit a specific mattress size and can vary quite a bit depending on how far you want the quilt to drop over the sides. Even a baby quilt can vary in size depending on whether or not it will be used for a crib quilt, a floor quilt for baby to lie on, or even a cozy car seat quilt. As you can see, the options are almost as endless as the imagination!
The purpose of my blog is to reach out to new or beginning quilters. Please don't feel confused or overwhelmed... I'm here to cheer you on and provide information that will help you succeed! My goal is to make all of this information easy on the brain. I promise to divide all of this information down into a clear and enjoyable experience. Ready? Read on!
First, decide on the purpose for your quilt:
Will it cover the back of the couch, drape over a bed, hang on the wall, or be given as a baby gift, etc.? Once you decide how your quilt will be used, then you can decide on what size it should be.
Second, let's talk about size:
I can say with certainty that if you do an internet search on standard quilt sizes, you will get a variety of measurements. That's OK because there is some very useful information out there. Just remember that in the end, it's your quilt, and you get to decide the size that fits your needs. Having said that, let's talk about some general guidelines that will help you in successfully choosing the right size quilt.
Interestingly, one of the most popular requests for quilts sizes I receive is for "lap" quilts or "throw" size quilts. Lap quilts serve many different purposes. This size is perfect for folding over the back of a couch for those Sunday afternoon naps or snuggling up with during movie nights. Lap quilts are generally perfect for one person at a time. Lap quilts also make wonderful gifts, such as memory quilts. Please keep in mind that a lap quilt can vary in size by several inches depending on preference.
*Standard Mattress Sizes:
The chart below shows six standard mattress sizes; however, please keep in mind that sizes may vary by manufacturer.
The graphic below shows how to measure for three finished sizes: Coverlet, Comforter, and Bedspread. A coverlet is measured just below the mattress, a comforter is measured just below the box spring, and a bedspread is measured to the floor.
A note about measuring: If possible, measure the bed with the sheets or other bedding that will be used along with the quilt.
A note about length: If you plan to have the quilt run the length of the bed from head to foot, you may want to add the desired length for the drop at the foot of the bed as well as 10" -12" for the pillow tuck. The quilt below was made with extra length for a foot drop and a pillow tuck.
One more important note: You may want to add a few inches to the width and length of your quilt in order to accommodate for shrinkage due to batting loft, machine quilting, and washing. There are some variables here, and I have read that anywhere from 2" to 6" extra is appropriate.
Finally, let's do the math... you've got this!
Here is an easy formula to determine the quilt size that is just right for a particular bed:
Well, there you have some basics of the what, why, and how of deciding on the right quilt size for your needs! To be sure, there is technical information that I didn't include here, but my purpose was to encourage you as a beginning quilter and give information that will get you started. I hope you will have many happy quilting days ahead. Please let me know if I can help in any way as you go along your quilting journey.