The rail fence quilt is an ideal quilt for the beginning quilter. The seams are all straight, and the quilt itself consists of only two different blocks. One of the blocks is a square of fabric, and the other is three strips of fabric sewn together so they're the same size as the square. Having the right amount of fabric on hand before you begin this project will make it go much more quickly.
A crib-size quilt measures approximately 44 inches by 51 inches if you are making 7-inch blocks. You will need four different fabrics, with preferably only one print while the others are solids. Choose the print fabric first and then choose three solid colors to coordinate with it. One of the solids should be the fabric that people will focus on when they examine the quilt. The other two solids should be a contrast to the main color. The amounts of fabric you will need for a crib-size quilt are 7/8 yard of your print fabric, ½ yard of the lighter fabric, 1-½ yards of one and 2-¼ yards of the other two darker contrasting fabrics. For the backing, you will need approximately 2 yards.
Since a twin-size quilt is larger than a crib quilt, measuring approximately 90 inches by 60 inches, you'll need to purchase more fabric and make more blocks to sew together. For a twin-size quilt, plan on purchasing 1-¾ yards of the print, ¾ yard of the lighter fabric and ¾ yard of one of the darker contrast fabrics and 1-½ yards of the remaining contrasting darker fabrics. For the backing, you will need approximately 4 yards of fabric.
A full-size quilt measures approximately 86 inches by 96 inches. The amounts of fabric you will need are 2-½ yards of the print, 1-½ yards of the lighter fabric, 1-½ yards of one contrast and 2-½ yards of the other contrasting solid. The amount required for the backing is approximately 6 yards.
For queen-size quilts measuring approximately 96 inches by 96 inches, the fabrics are about the same for a full-size quilt. The only different dimension in the measurements of a queen size quilt is the width. Purchase 2-3/4 yards of the print, 1-3/4 of the lighter fabric, 1-3/4 yards of one contrast and 2-3/4 yards of the other contrasting solid. The amount needed for the backing is approximately 6 yards.
King-size quilts are approximately 104 inches by 118 inches. Purchase 3 yards of the print, 2 yards of the lighter fabric, 2 yards of one contrast and 3-½ yards of the other contrasting solid. The amount required for the backing is approximately 8 yards. Before you purchase the backing fabric for the larger quilts, it is a good idea to finish the quilt top and then take measurements of that to make sure you purchase the right amount of fabric.