Does size matter? Helpful tips to choose ideal size for a baby quilt

Warning: Before you read my post, I want to ensure that you all know this important fact:
Please do keep in mind that babies should NEVER sleep with a quilt. The use of a quilt increases the risk of the sudden infant death syndrome. I have always waited until my babies were at least 6 months old and able to move on their own in their crib before adding a quilt.

Finding the perfect size for a Baby quilt

How many times have you wondered what size to make a baby quilt?

Does Size really matter when making a baby quilt?

I always wondered what the perfect quilt size for a gift is and now that my 3 boys have finished the baby stages, I have made many quilts and can tell you which ones were the best sizes.

The first thing we have to determine is what is the purpose of the quilt? Is it for decorative or use?

If the answer is decorative, then go for the size you feel like making.

However, if the answer is for use, we need to determine what it will be used for.

If you really want to have the quilt in the crib, keep in mind that a crib mattress is 27’’ x 52’’.  So if you plan to have a quilt sitting nicely in a crib, consider a design within that size. I tend to make them more 28” x 54” so that once the quilting is done, they won’t have shrunk too much and I adjust before adding the binding. If you want the toddler to sleep underneath the quilt, then that size is too small. It won’t cover adequately. That’s when we look for a bigger size, such as 40″ x 60″ which is the designated batting size for baby quilts. The size is intended to be able to roll the quilt around the toddler in the crib.

One of my favorite crib size quilt that I designed and made for several friends

Let’s take a look at proper size if you want to make a quilt for naps. I always enjoyed creating quilts for my kids for their naps at daycare. Since I wasn’t sure of the size they needed to be, I checked with my daycare and their mattresses were 20” wide. That’s when I started making my quilts about 30” x 54”. I increased them to 40” x 60” once my eldest asked me to make him a new quilt months before starting kindergarten. When I asked him why he said:

“If I tuck the quilt under my feet it won’t cover my chin and if I tuck my chin under the quilt my toes aren’t covered”.

So that’s when I figured that the lengths of these quilts are determined by the size of a child once they are 4 – 5 years old. So look at their parents! If they tend to be tall (my husband and I are around 5’9″ – 10″) do make them 60” long. If they tend to be shorter, say 5’4″, it’s safe to stay in the 50″ – 54″ range.

Now if you don’t want to make such a big quilt. It’s alright to go smaller.

We tend to forget how small babies are when they are born! On average, a baby born at 41 weeks gestation measures 20″.  So making a baby quilt measuring 20″ x 30″ is a good idea.

Here is a quilt I made in a hurry, sized 24” x 34”

I love making baby quilts in that size. And it also removes the pressure of wondering how the quilt will be used. I simply let the mother know that the quilt is a perfect size to:

  • lay over a car seat, ensuring that it doesn’t cover the baby’s face
  • cover the baby’s feet in the stroller
  • place as a mat on the floor for baby to play and exercise

You won’t have to stress over the choice of colors and they won’t feel obligated to put it in the baby’s room. It’s the perfect size for gifting.

I’m hoping that I’ve been helpful in choosing the proper baby size quilt to make.

The PFAFF creative icon

Join me the rest of this week, as I make a baby quilt using the awesome features of the PFAFF creative icon.

This is part 1 of 5 in this series.

Go to part 2: 5 essential tips for quickly finishing a baby quilt

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Sandy Allen April 23, 2018 - 7:43 am
Thanks for this! I have trouble figuring out what size to make baby quilts.
Claire Haillot April 23, 2018 - 12:36 pm
You're welcome Sandy! Glad I could help
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