Decimals to Fractions Conversion Chart for Quilters

It's Easy to Convert Decimals to Fractions

A decimal to fraction conversion chart is handy when you need to change pattern instructions to determine how to cut patches for your quilting projects. Understanding the conversions will help you calculate yardage for a quilt, too.

Fractions Most Often Used to Cut Quilt Blocks

It's difficult to rotary cut patchwork shapes when their dimensions are in 16ths of an inch because nearly all rotary rulers are marked in 1/8-inch increments.

Rotary cutting speeds up the quiltmaking process so I usually try to avoid those dimensions by altering the quilt patterns that I write.

Sometimes it's possible to bump a piece of fabric up to the next largest 8th-inch measurement and then trim back if necessary after assembly. We nearly always use oversized patches when we cut corner and setting triangles.

We use quilting templates when a piece of fabric must be cut to a specific size.

Fractions Most Often Used for Quilting Fabric Yardage

One yard of fabric is 36" long (the lengthwise grain) and usually 42-44" wide (the crosswise grain). Learning about the properties of fabric grain can help you make an accurate quilt.

  • .125 yard = 1/8 yard, or 4-1/2" along the lengthwise grain
  • .25 yard = 1/4 yard, or 9" along the lengthwise grain
  • .333 yard = 1/3 yard, or just under 12" along the lengthwise grain
  • .375 yard = 3/8 yard, or 13-1/2" along the lengthwise grain
  • .5 yard = 1/2 yard, or 18" along the lengthwise grain
  • .625 yard = 5/8 yard, or 22-1/2" along the lengthwise grain
  • .66 yard = 2/3 yard, or just under 24" along the lengthwise grain
  • .875 yard = 7/8 yard, or 31-1/2" along the lengthwise grain

You'll hear the term fat quarter when you shop for quilting fabric.

 Fat quarters are quarter yards that measure about 18" x 22". A typical 1/4 yard is good for strip piecing but fat quarters offer more cutting options when larger patches are needed.

Many quilt shops and fabric stores will not cut fabric that's less than 1/8th of a yard. If you do buy very narrow cuts it's best not to prewash the fabric in a washing machine -- it will likely fray and stretch out of shape. Hand wash and dry narrow strips of fabric to help keep them intact.

For larger cuts, use a simple technique to keep fabrics from fraying in the wash.

Decimal to Fraction Conversions