Difference between a Coverlet and a Quilt

By: | Updated: Jan-31, 2018
The contents of the Difference.guru website, such as text, graphics, images, and other material contained on this site (“Content”) are for informational purposes only. The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical or legal advice. Always seek the advice of your doctor with any questions you may have regarding your medical condition. Never disregard professional advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website!

The bed is often one of the most loved furnishings in a home. When it’s nearing the end of a hard day’s work, most people dream about lying down on their beds. This piece of furniture provides comfort and relaxation. What adds to the comfort of a bed is the bedding and bedspreads. Some bedspreads are called coverlets or quilts. What are coverlets and quilts and how are they differentiated? Read on and understand their differences.

Summary Table

Coverlet Quilt
Can be made of either light or heavy fabric Made of loose fabrics like cotton, silk or wool to allow for stitching of several layers of material
Has a very thin layer of padding Has 3 layers (woven front, padding interior, and woven back)
One consistent design Made up of several fabric designs (patchwork)
Used primarily as bed covers Has varied uses aside from bedding like table decorations and wall hangings
Just big enough to cover the surface of the bed and drape over the sides Comes in varied sizes


blue coverlet
A blue coverlet with matching pillow shams

A coverlet is a lightweight bedspread likened to a thin blanket. It is designed to cover the bed and has overhanging sides. It has been used as a bed cover in the US since the colonial times. Coverlets can be made of either thin or heavy cloth. They are usually woven or quilted and have a very thin layer of padding. Coverlets often have one consistent design or color throughout the entire fabric. They are considered to be a decorative layer. Most of the time, coverlets come with a pair of matching pillow shams.

colorful quilt
A colorful quilt

A quilt is a thicker bedspread often used during the colder seasons. It is usually made up of several pieces of cloth that are stitched together. Quilts normally have three layers: a woven cloth top, a thick layer of padding, and a woven back. The patchwork of smaller pieces of fabric that often comprises the top layer makes quilts very colorful. The varied patterns used in making quilts add to their uniqueness. Quilts have also been part of several family traditions. Some people prepare them as gifts for special occasions like birthdays, graduations, and marriage. Over the years, quilts have been used for varied purposes aside from bedding. They are now also used as table runners, tablecloths, or wall hangings.

Coverlet vs Quilt

What is the difference between a coverlet and a quilt? A coverlet is made of either light or heavy fabric and has a very thin layer of padding. A quilt, on the other hand, is made up of three layers – two of loose fabric and thicker padding in between. The coverlet’s design is usually consistent throughout the cloth while a quilt is characterized by a patchwork of different designs from smaller pieces of fabric. Coverlets are primarily used as bed covers/decorations but quilts have other functions such as a table or wall decoration. The size of coverlets are consistent – just big enough to cover the bed with overhanging sides. Quilts can come in a wide variety of sizes.

(Visited 110 times, 1 visits today)
Did this article help you?
Thank you!
Thank you!
What was wrong?