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Thread: How much backing fabric do I need?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Jenni M's Avatar
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    If a quilt top measures 61 X 72, how much fabric will I need for the backing? I don't know why I struggle with this! HELP!!!! Is there a math formula that I can use?

    Thanks in advance for your help. When you are self taught and don't have a partner close by to work with it is tough at times! Especially if you are a visual learner like me! :shock:

  2. #2
    Super Member Homespun's Avatar
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    I think of it this way -- a yard is 36 by 44 so 2 yards would get you the 72" side and another 2 yards will get you the 61" side. But you will need a little extra. Think about dividing the quilt into 36 by 44 blocks. I would get 4 1/2 yards and you will have some left over. Hope that makes sense.

  3. #3
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jenni M
    If a quilt top measures 61 X 72, how much fabric will I need for the backing? I don't know why I struggle with this! HELP!!!! Is there a math formula that I can use?

    Thanks in advance for your help. When you are self taught and don't have a partner close by to work with it is tough at times! Especially if you are a visual learner like me! :shock:
    I posted to your other thread re the quantity.

    Here's a hint for another time. I still sit down with pen and paper and draw the back of my quilt with measurements. Then from that, draw the lines where I will seam the fabric to determine my quantities needed.

    Just always be sure to allow for seam allowances and cutting off the selvedges ... and that the backing needs to be wider than the front. That amount varies depending on what each quilter requires.

    Also, be careful, as widths of cottons vary ... which could leave you short, if you're not careful.

  4. #4
    Super Member Stacey's Avatar
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    I just grab my handy "Patchwork Minus Mathwork" book by Linda Causee and look it up. It is a really good investment. 5 3/4 yards.

  5. #5
    Super Member TonnieLoree's Avatar
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    The length of the quilt + 6" x 2. And yes, you will have extra for your stash. :-

  6. #6
    Super Member BKrenning's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuiltE
    Quote Originally Posted by Jenni M
    If a quilt top measures 61 X 72, how much fabric will I need for the backing? I don't know why I struggle with this! HELP!!!! Is there a math formula that I can use?

    Thanks in advance for your help. When you are self taught and don't have a partner close by to work with it is tough at times! Especially if you are a visual learner like me! :shock:
    I posted to your other thread re the quantity.

    Here's a hint for another time. I still sit down with pen and paper and draw the back of my quilt with measurements. Then from that, draw the lines where I will seam the fabric to determine my quantities needed.
    This is how I do it, too if I have to piece the back. I try to use as little fabric as possible and make do with whatever I have in my stash. For more special quilts, I will buy the wide backings & have also used sheets. I hate piecing backings but I hate wasting fabric even more!

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  8. #8
    Super Member nursie76's Avatar
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    My FabriCalc says 4.5 yards.

  9. #9
    Super Member bamamama's Avatar
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    And if its going to be Long Arm Quilted remember to add at least 4-6 extra inches all around.

  10. #10
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    Do you have some of the front fabrics leftover ... piece them together, rather than putting them into your stash.

  11. #11
    Senior Member AndiR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jenni M
    If a quilt top measures 61 X 72, how much fabric will I need for the backing? I don't know why I struggle with this! HELP!!!! Is there a math formula that I can use?
    Regular width fabric is about 42" wide, so when you sew two widths of it together you will have about 84", which will give you enough for the length.

    You will need two times the width of the quilt top (61" ) plus extra for shrinkage if you wash it and extra around the edges if it's going to be longarm quilted. So, (61"+8" ) x 2 = 138" / 36" = 3.83 - I would round up to 4 yards.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Jenni M's Avatar
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    You all are awesome! I appreciate the help so much!

  13. #13
    Super Member Jan in VA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nursie76
    My FabriCalc says 4.5 yards.
    I agree with this calculation.

    Jan in VA

  14. #14
    Super Member Cris's Avatar
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    I am not a math wizard either and need all the help I can get. Someone on this board posted:
    www.victorianaquiltdesigns.com
    I printed off a backing and a binding calculator sheet. Also printed a cutting strips and squares calculator.

  15. #15
    Super Member ScubaK's Avatar
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    Do you have an iPhone? There is a nifty app from Robert Kaufman/Quilters Paradise called QuiltingCalc (The Quilters Little Helper.
    This says for 61x72", with fabric 42" wide, 3" overage. The seam running lengthwise...you will need 4 3/8 yards of fabric.
    Hope this helps. Anymore questions, just ask!
    Kirsten

  16. #16
    Senior Member Jenni M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScubaK
    Do you have an iPhone? There is a nifty app from Robert Kaufman/Quilters Paradise called QuiltingCalc (The Quilters Little Helper.
    This says for 61x72", with fabric 42" wide, 3" overage. The seam running lengthwise...you will need 4 3/8 yards of fabric.
    Hope this helps. Anymore questions, just ask!
    Kirsten
    I do have an iphone! I'll check out the app. Thanks Kirsten!

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