3 Easy Ways to Widen a Quilt Top

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Have you ever bought a quilt pattern just to realize that the pattern designer’s definition of a throw-size quilt isn’t the same as yours?

Luckily, widening the size of your quilt top isn’t as difficult as it may seem. In today’s post, I’ll share three different ways to adjust the size of your quilt top to fit your needs.

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Add Borders to your Quilt

One way to adjust the size of your quilt top is to create borders for your quilt. You can add a border to as many sides of the quilt as you need in order to get it to your desired size. Most commonly, you will add borders to two or four sides of your quilt.

A quilt border is a strip of fabric that you attach to the edges of your quilt top. You can make these borders as simple or intricate as you like. I like to use a plain strip of fabric that matches my background fabric for my borders, but you can use a contrasting color or even piece together a border to make it an extension of your original quilt top.

For example, let’s say you have a 60” square quilt that you want to fit a twin size bed. You’ll need to add 4 borders to the quilt for it to reach your desired size of 70” x 90”.

First, you’ll need to add borders to the sides of your quilt. To determine the size of your borders, take the desired quilt width (70”) and subtract the current quilt width (60″) to get 10”. Then, divide this number by two to get 5”. Remember to add .25” to your borders for your seam allowance!

In the end, you’ll have two side borders with a width of 5.25”. The length of the side borders will match the current quilt top length measurement of 60”. 

Next, let’s do the math for the top and bottom borders. After adding the side borders, the quilt measures 70” x 60”.

To get to the desired length of 90″, take the desired quilt length (90″) and subtract the current quilt length (60″) to get (30″). Then, divide this number by two to get 15″. Again, add your seam allowance!

You’ll end up with two top and bottom borders that measure a length of 15.25″ The width of the borders will match the current quilt top width of 70″.

Add Quilt Blocks to your Quilt

The next option to widen your quilt is to add more quilt blocks to your quilt. A common type of quilt pattern is a block-based pattern. These quilt patterns typically layout the same size as quilt blocks in a grid.

In order to add height or width to your quilt, add another row or column of quilt blocks. This is a great way to turn a square quilt into a rectangle, too!

Add Sashing to your Quilt

Lastly, you can add sashing to your quilt. Sashing is strips of fabric placed in between quilt blocks. You can place sashing between each quilt block or place it strategically throughout your quilt to help you gain the length and width you desire.

For example, if you have a 60” square quilt and you want it to be a 72” square block, you can place a 4” sashing strip in between each quilt block. You could also place a 12” strip of sashing every 2 blocks to get the same measurement but a completely different look.

The best thing about quilting is the ability to be creative – and these 3 quilt widening methods will allow your creativity to shine when you’re adjusting the size of your quilt top. Getting creative with the colors and piecing of your sashing or border fabric will make your quilt truly one of a kind.

xo, Hailey

Other Blog Posts You May Like:
How to Square a Quilt Top
The Stress-Free Guide to Machine Washing your Quilt
Can You Make a Quilt Without Batting?
How to Piece Quilt Backing
Can You Use Polyester Thread for Quilting?


  1. I’m curious to know if you have any suggestions on how to make a finished quilt larger?

    I made a quilt for my granddaughter when she was in a twin size bed and she has graduated to a full and still wants to use her old quilt for the big bed.

    1. Aside from making a new quilt with the same pattern, I think you would have to deconstruct it back to just a quilt top and add onto it with borders or additional blocks from the same pattern. From there, you would quilt it as desired and bind it!

      1. I saw a quilt top made larger by removing the binding and adding quilted borders. You could tuck the borders under the binding and top stitch. Makes it look like qayg with borders. Another way would be to make a ruffled edge, sewing it under the binding. Usually a quilt has been washed a few time when used as a single bed, so just match up material for borders as best you can. It works and mostly no-one notices. The quilt is loved, that is why yeh daughter still want to use it. Sorry for the late response. Just saw the post and added my thoughts!

    2. I have added quilt as you go blocks for a thick finished border to make crib size into twin size. Then I basted then stitched(decorative stitch) flat 2” sashing as a border over the top and bottom seams where it was made wider. Lots of patience but it turned out like it was made for the twin size.

  2. Hi Hailey, I have envisioned this for a long time. Thank you for your suggestions.


  3. I found in my stash a rectangle of squares I’d sewn together with “leftover” squares from a baby quilt I made a few years ago. It is about 26″ x 32″. I love the great fabrics/colors, and would like to use these squares to build a new baby quilt. What do you think of a blender of 6″ all around, then a cute binding? The squares are all bright colors and some prints and blender prints. Many squares are already sewn, or I’d try your dashing suggestion – live that idea! Thanks.

    1. I think that sounds amazing! Almost like a scrappy square border – so cute!

    1. Hi Hilary, this tutorial is for just a quilt top that hasn’t been basted or quilted yet. But if you have a quilt that has already been quilted and you’re taking it apart to add width/length, you can add batting by zig zag stitching additional batting pieces to the existing batting or by using fusible batting tape!

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