Quilt Size Chart – What Size of Quilt Do I Need?

Has this ever happened to you? You’ve chosen the perfect quilt pattern to complement your bedroom décor, found the perfect fabric, and calculated the amount of batting you will need for your quilt’s backing only to find out that the quilt size you had in mind is much too small for the bed you are making it for?  Deciding the size of a quilt is an important factor to consider before beginning any project and can be confusing for a beginner quilter. In this blog post, we aim to help ease that confusion by providing a breakdown of standard quilt size chart, tips for selecting the right size, and ideas for selecting accompanying accessories. 

Making a quilt for a bed used to be so simple, you knew what size your bed was and you found a quilt pattern marked for that size.  It’s not so simple anymore, the majority of quilt patterns today just give dimensions, and beds come in a lot more sizes than twin, full, queen, and king.  

I’ve researched the mattresses, I should have read the reviews we are in need of a new one, to find out not just the sizes of today’s mattresses but also the thickness of both the mattress and box springs.  The big thing I learned is they aren’t called box springs anymore, they are mattress foundations.  

Breaking Down the Standard Quilt Size Chart

I am sticking just to the six most common but the formula is the same no matter what size of bed you have.  You will have to do a little bit of math because the combinations of mattress thicknesses and foundations are just too vast to put on a single infographic.

So let’s break this down a little bit.  To cover the mattress you’ll want to add 10″ to both the width and length of your mattress.  The reason we want to add anything to the width and length is that we need to factor in the shrinking that will happen when the quilt top is quilted.  Also, if we only want the quilt to cover the top of the mattress when the bed is made we also need to take into account that the person underneath the quilt is going to take up some of the quilt.  We don’t want to put a quilt on a bed that won’t cover the person who is sleeping under it.

Tips for Selecting the Right Size Quilt

Let’s do an example together, OK?  I have a queen bed which is 60×80 which means I need a quilt no smaller than 70×90 but I’m old school and want my quilt to cover my mattress and the foundation.  Now if you’ve had your bed for a while and don’t know what height it is you can just go measure it.  For this example let’s say my mattress is 12 inches tall and my foundation is 7.5 inches.  The first thing I want to do is double or times 2 the height of my mattress and my foundation which would be 24 inches and 15 inches.  I would add those together, getting 29 but I would probably round it up to 30 for ease of adding.  Lastly, I would add 30 to both my width and my length for my final size, 100×120.  

Ultimately, the choice will be yours but I don’t think you should go any smaller than covering your mattress at least.  There might be some that want the quilt to go all the way to the floor so you will need to add the height of the bed frame into your math above, remember to double it though.  The reason we double it is that if it’s 12 inches on the left side it’s 12 inches on the right side too. 

Examples of Different Quilt Sizes On Beds

Let’s look at some examples from my friends at HGTV.  They have 30 examples of bedrooms on their site.  Now, I’m going to show all 30, if you want to see them head over to HGTV.  The examples are going to show duvet covers not quilts but the concept is the same.  This is also why I give you that math formula so you can get the right look for your bedroom. 

First up we have this bedroom from HGTV’s Hometown.  Erin Napier has the bedding going to the floor.  This is a great option if you store things under your bed but want to hide it if someone is going to see your bed. 

In this bedroom by Joanna Gaines she opted to cover the mattress and the foundation if there is one.  I remember watching this episode but I don’t remember that little detail.  

I have watched every episode of Fixer Upper at least 3 times if not more and I was shocked to see this example and it wasn’t a standalone example.  There were several like this.  So here Joanna covers the mattress with the quilt and covers the foundation with a bed skirt.  I didn’t realize that bed skirts were still a thing.  I remember my mom making them but I have always covered the foundation of the bed with the quilt.

This is my final example and it is once again from Joanna Gaines.  Here the foundation sits down in the bed frame so the quilt on top goes to the edge of the bed frame.  

Ideas for Making Accompanying Accessories

I think we all saw the pillows on the beds in the above examples.  Pillows are quick and easy to make.  A great way to tie everything together is to make a couple of extra quilt blocks and turn them into pillows.  You can even make pillowcases out of the same fabric as your quilt.  I would toss in a contrasting pillow set too just so everything doesn’t get too matchy-matchy.

If you like the idea of a bed skirt I found this tutorial on how to make a bed skirt.  I like this bed skirt because it isn’t ruffled but if ruffles are your thing here’s a tutorial on how to make a ruffled bed skirt.  The ruffled tutorial is what I remember my mom making using basically the same method.  

Final Thoughts on What Size of Quilt So I Need

I hope the examples truly show that there is no right or wrong answer for what size to make your quilt and the right size for me, 100×120, might not be the right size for you.  Just make the quilt that’s going to give you the look that YOU WANT.  

Now that you have the knowledge to select the best size quilt for your project, get quilting! Share this blog post with friends who are just getting started in quilting and let this be their quilting 101 guide.

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