Twin size quilts can be made in many patterns and designs, yet the size will always remain the same. A standard twin size bed mattress is 39 by 75 inches, but to have the appropriate overhang and look fantastic on the bed, the standard quilt size is 69 inches by 90 inches. This can be accomplished by using blocks, strips of material or various shapes sewn into appliquéd patterns. Quilting can also refer to the pattern sewn into the blanket itself.
Quilting can be traced back to ancient Egypt after an ivory carving was discovered in 1903 depicting an Egyptian king wearing a mantle, or cloak, which appears to be quilted. The oldest known quilt was discovered in a Mongolian cave dating to around the 1st century and is now stored at the Leningrad Department of the Institute of Archaeology of the Academy of the Sciences of the Union of the Soviet Republic.
Twin size quilts, like other bedding sized quilts, are intended to keep the sleeper warm on cold winter nights. Because twin size beds are smaller than a double or larger bed, the quilt needs to be sized to fit the bed without dragging the floor or becoming too cumbersome.
There are two major types of quilts, pieced and whole cloth. A pieced quilt may consist of blocks, shapes or strips of fabric. A whole cloth quilt is simply the top fabric, the batting and the backing. The sewing pattern itself becomes the decoration for the whole cloth quilt.
A twin sized quilt can take anywhere from a few days to several months to complete depending upon complexity and the method of sewing. An individual creating a hand-sewn quilt will take much longer than a quilting bee or other group of quilters.
The traditional twin size quilt of 69 by 90 inches will also fit most daybeds on the market. It takes approximately 54 12-inch blocks of material to finish a completed twin size quilt top.
Women of leisure made most decorative quilts from the early American period. Since women of the time period also had to sew the family clothing, only those women who could afford servants had the time to devote to decorative quilting.