How Much Fabric Do I Need for a Quilt?

Making a quilt will be a fun project as you will be using different pieces to create a masterpiece. But, what if you run out of the fabric when your quilt is half done or you have your designing studio all filled with scraps? To keep up with the excitement and motivation, you must gather all the information to make a quilt.

You will need a top layer, batting, and backing. So, your query is “how much fabric do I need for a quilt?”. For a 36” x 50” quilt, you will require 1.5 yards of fabric that is 42 inches wide. But, if you want a larger quilt, more than 42 inches, then 3.5 yards of fabric will work well for you.

In this article, we have covered all the topics regarding fabric calculation for different quilt sizes. Patiently going through it will help you design a beautiful quilt.

What is Quilt Fabric?

Quilt fabric is any material that is used to make a quilt. When choosing the best quilt fabric, you come across different options. Fabric crafters use different combinations according to the preferences and designs they want. Traditionally, a quilt consists of three layers, a top layer, batting in the center, and backing as the final layer.

Quiltmakers love quilter’s weight cotton that is medium-weight plain weave 100% cotton. This quilting cotton is not the same as apparel cotton. So, how would you recognize quilting cotton? When you unroll the fabric from the fabric bolt, the apparel fabric will hang loosely while the quilting cotton will hang straight exhibiting the denseness. Another way to check is by rubbing the fabric between your fingers. The quilting cotton will be stiffer and thicker than regular cotton sheets.

Quilting cotton, when sewing, does not stretch much and lasts longer. Other popular quilting fabrics include voile, cotton flannel, linen, and wool. You can choose the quilting fabric according to your needs.

How Much Fabric Do I Need for a Quilt?

Before visiting the fabric store, you must know the quilt size. Is it for a king-size bed, a queen-sized, or a baby crib? Once this is figured out, the next thing would be how much fabric you need for a quilt. It depends on the design, pattern, and fabric you choose.

You will need fabric pieces for backing, top layer, and for binding the layers.

The more intricate your design is, the more extra fabric you will need. For the quilt top, sketch the design and label the measurements for all the parts.

Cotton and wadding shrink when washed. So, multiplying the measurements by 1.05 will allow 5% for shrinkage.

How Many Yards of Fabric Do I Need for a Full-Size Quilt?

The quilt size varies according to the mattress measurements. A full-size or double-size mattress is 54’’ x 75’’. So, you will need 80” x 88” for a full-size quilt. In yards, the fabric will be 2.2 yards x 2.4 yards.

You can make a quilt of any size you like. If you want extra drape, you can add that too. Now, your question would be about how much fabric for the drape. Just measure the size of your mattress and add the inches you want to hang from the edges. If you already have a bedspread, you can simply use it as your guide.

To give you a measurement for extra drape, it is recommended to add 12 inches, or 16 inches, or 21 inches to your quilt size.

With 12 inches extra fabric drop, the quilt size will be 2.5 yards x 2.7 yards. If you want to go for 16 inches, it will be 2.6 yards x 2.8 yards. Adding 21 inches of extra fabric will make 2.8 yards x 3 yards.
A full-size quilt requires 52/3 yards of 44”-45” fabric.

How Many Yards of Fabric Do I Need for a King Size Quilt?

King size quilt will want you to snuggle in forgetting all about the to-do-tasks. But, you can catch up with the work routine after a comfortable power nap. So, the more the comfort, the more will be the fabric. The yards of fabric for a king-size quilt will depend on the pattern and design.

A king-size mattress (U.S.) is 76” x 80”. The US standard size for a king-size quilt is 104 inches by 93 inches. Converting the measurements into yards will be 2.8 yards by 2.5 yards. You can add extra fabric that hangs from the bed.

For a king-size quilt, you will require 87/8 yards of 44”-45” fabric and 57/8 yards of 54”-60”.

How Many Yards of Fabric for a Queen Size Quilt?

The yardage required for a queen-size quilt varies according to the design and type of fabric. A standard queen-size mattress measures (U.S.) 60” x 80”. The queen size quilt is approximately 88” wide and 96” long.

With these measurements, you will require 8 yards of fabric for the quilt front and 8 yards of fabric for the quilt back. This is a general estimate. The design and pattern can require 1-2 yards more.

How Much Fabric for a Lap Quilt?

A lap quilt is all you want to pull off the sofa storage on a chilly evening. You would even want to cozy up and sleep on your favorite couch after watching a show. So, having a lap quilt would be a luxury.

The fabric yardage for a lap quilt depends on the size requirement. Whether it should be small-sized, medium, or large. If you are going for a small-sized lap quilt, then the fabric should be 36” x 48”. For a medium-sized lap quilt, the fabric will be 30” x 60”. The larger, the cozier. A fabric of 45” x 60” would be fine for a large-sized lap quilt. Love extra-large sizes? Then, make it 54” x 72”.

How Many Yards of Fabric for a Twin Size Quilt?

Sharing a bed with someone who has a weird sleeping style might end you sleeping on the floor. Having a twin-size bed is no less than a luxury to sleep on. A cozy twin-size quilt is a cherry on the top. Shopping for the fabric could be daunting if you have not researched before about the designs, fabric type, and fabric measurements.

A standard twin-size (U.S.) mattress is 39 inches by 75 inches. The twin-size quilt measures approximately 68 inches by 88 inches. Rounding them up makes 70 inches by 90 inches. Adding 14 inches on each side for extra drape, you will need 6 yards. This will make a twin-size quilt of 72 inches by 96 inches.

How Much Fabric for a Baby Quilt?

A comfortable and cozy quilt will be good to go for a baby crib. You can add your favorite patterns and designs to gift a baby quilt to a newborn.

A standard crib mattress measures 28” x 52”. The crib quilt is approximately 36” x 54” that fits well inside the crib. A newborn baby quilt measures 25” x 30” while a toddler quilt is 35” x 45”.

How to Choose Quilt Fabric?

You must choose the perfect fabric when it comes to making a quilt. You would not want to waste your efforts cutting the fabric according to the measurement, joining, and then sewing the patches together. Selecting the suitable fabric will make your quilt long-lasting.

Let’s quickly help you with the fabric selection.

  • When making the blocks for your quilt, make sure you are using the same type of fabric. For instance, if you are using quilter’s weight cotton then all the blocks must be of quilter’s weight cotton. You can use different colors and patterns but not different fabrics.
  • Use the thread of the same material as the fabric. For wool, you can use silk thread.
  • To prevent shrinking or tearing, wash the fabric before quilting.
  • Natural fabrics can withstand heat as quilting requires ironing and they are also skin-friendly.
  • Select a material with a dense weave and high thread count for durability.

How to Cut Quilt Fabric Accurately?

All sewing lovers know that it is best to measure twice before cutting any fabric. You need to start with proper cutting to get the required results. Both beginners and experienced quilters find this process challenging. So, you must learn how to cut quilt fabric accurately.

Here are the simple steps:

  1. Collect all the tools to do this. You will require a rotary cutter, two rulers, a measuring mat, and a working table.
  2. Cut long and straight strips from the fabric.
  3. Then fold those strips and square them up to one end. Squaring is to make the edges such that they align well.
  4. Now, you need to mark the length you require.
  5. To cut the measured length, begin from the squared end using a rotary cutter.


Whether you are planning to make a quilt for your king-size or queen-size bed or to welcome your newborn, you now know the measurements. The yardage of the quilt fabric will depend on the material you choose, design, and pattern.

I hope you find this article on “how much fabric do I need for a quilt?” helpful. Each quilt will reflect a person’s style and size will also vary according to the requirements. Happy Quilting!

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