If you thought quilts were only good for snuggling up to, then it’s time to set your sights on new empty spaces. “Hanging can allow the entire quilt to be seen and appreciated, and will protect it from accidents such as spilled drinks,” says Nicole Wall, founder of The Velvet Pincushion. “Quilts make beautiful and unique displays inside your home, and can be a great conversation starter.”
However, much like any work of art, it’s important to know how to hang a quilt properly to safeguard it from harm. “Hanging can put the stress of gravity on the seams and fabric, and the bigger the quilt, the greater the strain,” Wall explains. “It’s beneficial to take down a hanging quilt every three or four months to give it a rest.” However, if you have more than one quilt in your collection to show off, you can switch out your hanging quilts every season to keep things fresh while giving them a break. “As long as the next quilt in the rotation is roughly the same size, you could even use the same rod and sleeve to hang it,” says Suzy Williams, founder of Suzy Quilts.
Curious how to hang a quilt at home? We asked Wall and Williams to share their advice and here’s what they had to say.
According to Williams, the most popular way to hang a quilt—and the way festivals and shows require quilts to be hung—is with a 4-inch wide sleeve sewn to the back. “I suggest hand-stitching it so you don’t see the sleeve stitching on the front of the quilt,” she says “Once you have your quilt measured, go to a home improvement store and have them cut a hanging rod to insert in the sleeve and nail to the wall.”
Try a quilt hanger with clamps.
If you aren’t interested in sewing a sleeve onto the back of a quilt, Wall suggests investing in a wooden hanger with clamps, such as Well Made Magnetic Poster Hangers (starting from $20, wearewellmade.com). “The clamps grasp the edges of the quilt without damaging it,” she explains. However, she warns that these kinds of specialized hangers are best reserved for smaller quilts, since they don’t provide as much support as a sleeve and rod. “Large quilts tend to sag between the clamps,” she says.
Use self-adhesive strips.
Searching for a damage-free way to display a beloved quilt on a wall? Wall recommends hanging them to your wall with large, picture-hanging Command Strips ($7.88, target.com). “You’ll want one pair of strips for each of the two corners and then another every eighteen inches or so in the middle, to help support the weight and prevent sagging,” she says. “Hold the strip parallel with the top edge of the back of the quilt, just inside the binding, and sew it down using a whip stitch around the edges. Repeat until you have a strip in each corner, and every 18 inches or so, and then hang it like you would a large picture.”
Consider a quilt ladder.
When all else fails, Williams says you can always count on a sleek quilt ladder to show off your quilts in style. “If you can’t find a ladder you like, use a pretty towel rack instead,” she says. “Quilts are works of art that bring warmth and texture to a room and should be enjoyed as such!”
If a quilt is small and thin enough, both experts say to consider framing it like a piece of artwork. “Smaller quilts, or ones with single blocks, can be be framed,” Wall explains. “This is especially smart for securing old or heirloom quilts with weakening fabrics that can easily be damaged when hung.”