Bed Skirt Height and Length Guide & Tips to Choose the Right Style for Your Room
A bed skirt is a piece of fabric that wraps around the bottom of a bed to cover the legs and other components of the bed. Bed skirts can give a more stylish appearance to a bed by covering the sides of the box spring or hiding any space under the bed that might be used as storage space. A flat sheet of fabric is spread out under the mattress and over the box spring with the decorative side pieces of the bed skirt falling to the floor around the bed. We’ll discuss how to choose the right bed skirt height and length in this article.
Bed skirt heights range from 14 inches to 18 inches. Bed skirt lengths can go up to 80 inches and the width of a bed skirt is dependent on mattress size. A typical bed skirt for a twin-sized bed will be 39 inches wide, 75 inches long, and have a 15-inch drop, often pleated or ruffled. A bed skirt for a queen-sized bed will usually be 60 inches wide by 80 inches long with a 15-inch drop. A bed skirt for a king-sized bed will be 78 inches wide by 80 inches long with a 15-inch drop.
A bed skirt is also called a dust ruffle because it covers up a possibly dusty floor under the bed. It is usually a similar color as the quilt or comforter, pulling together a cohesive overall bedroom look. Read this Texas AM University pamphlet which details ways to improve the aesthetic and bedding choices for your bedroom.
The bed skirt height and length will be determined by the size of the bed and the distance from the bed base to the floor. A King size bed will need a bed skirt that is wide enough to cover the width and hang over the sides of the bed. A bed that sits high off the floor will need a bed skirt with a longer drop length. Read our article on platform bed skirts to find out more.
How to Measure for a Bed Skirt
Although there are standard sizes for beds, mattresses, and bed skirts, it is still important to measure your bed for the right size bed skirt. Even slight variations from standard sizes can make a difference in the final usability and appearance of the bed skirt, while non-standard bed sizes make an even bigger difference. Read our article on bed skirt alternatives for unique ways to dress up a bed frame.
To measure a bed for a bed skirt, first, measure the width of the mattress, then measure the length of the mattress, and, finally, measure the drop from the bed base to the floor. The drop is the distance from the top of the box spring or bed frame, to the floor, that the bed skirt will cover.
Step 1. Measure the Width of the Mattress
Measuring the width of the mattress is a fairly easy task since it involves simply taking a tape measure and measuring how wide the mattress is. This is best done if the tape is placed across the top of the mattress.
Step 2. Use a Tape Measure to Determine the Length of the Mattress
This involves placing the tape measure along one of the vertical sides of the mattress and measuring how long it is.
An extra few inches (up to four) are added to both the length and width of the mattress.
Step 3. Measure the Drop, which is the Height of the Bed from the Bottom of the Mattress to the Floor
This is the distance from the top of the box spring to the ground.This is usually around 15 to 16 inches. Though beds that are placed on risers will need to have a longer length, like this one from Amazon.
To prevent yourself a lot of frustration, make sure to also read our 6 ways to make a bed skirt stay in place and prevent sliding too.
How Low Should a Bed Skirt Hang?
Once you have the measurements of the bed that you will be using the bed skirt on, you will need to then determine the actual measurements you will need for that bed skirt. The final measurements of the bed skirt or dust ruffle will affect both how attractive and how functional the bed skirt will be once it is added to the bed. Read our comprehensive guide on bed skirts for even more useful tips and tricks.
A bed skirt usually hangs up to four inches below the bottom of the lowest component of the bed, the box spring or frame. This is because a bed skirt is supposed to just brush the floor. For a crisp and modern appearance, do not let the bed skirt fall to the floor and bunch up. For beds that are taller or lower, adjust the height appropriately so the bed skirt brushes the floor but doesn’t bunch up.
Should a Bed Skirt Touch the Floor?
A bed skirt is supposed to touch the floor. It can either touch the floor lightly or drape over it and fall to the floor in puddles. When deciding how you want the bed skirt to fall, consider the rest of the room and who will be sleeping on the bed. If the bed skirt can pose any sort of tripping hazard, avoid using a bed skirt that will settle on the floor, particularly if the bedroom is used by children or the elderly. Read this article from the American Geriatrics Society, on reducing environmental hazards in the home of the elder, for deeper insight.
A bed skirt should touch the floor in order to conceal any items tucked under the bed, the bed frame, or simply the sides of the bed. Its primary purpose is to give the room a more cohesive and polished look while hiding any imperfections. For a more traditional look, let the bed skirt bunch up on the floor. For a modern look, do not let the bed skirt bunch up on the floor.
To be aesthetically pleasing, as well as to hide the bed frame and the sides of the mattress, the drop needs to be measured accurately. Read our bed skirt hacks article to learn about how to properly secure your bed skirt so that it stays in place. The drop should be measured from the bottom of the mattress since the bed skirt is actually placed above the box spring (or other bed support platform) and below the mattress.
Make sure to also take a look at how to choose the right bed skirt shoe organizer to see how these dual-purpose bed skirts work.
Summary of Bed Skirt Drops
|Bed Skirt Height||How High Should the Bottom of Your Mattress Be?||Example of Bed Skirt from Amazon||Price of Bed Skirt|
|14”||14 inches||Easy Fit 14” Inch Pleated Wrap-Around Bed Skirt||~$20|
|15”||15 inches||Utopia Bedding Soft Quadruple Pleated Dust Ruffle Bed Shirt||~$10|
|16”||16 inches||Biscayne Bay Easy Fit Wrap-Around Bed Skirt with Elastic Dust Ruffles||~$20|
|17”||17 inches||PureFit Satin Silk Pom Pom Ruffled Wrap-Around Bed Skirt with Adjustable Elastic Belt||~$20|
|18”||18 inches||Dust Ruffle with Split Corner Ruffled Gathered Bed Skirt with Three-Sided Platform Coverage||~$30|
Bed Skirt Height and Length Guide
Below is a summary of bed skirt height and length in accordance with bed sizes:
|Bed Size||Bed Length||Bed Width||Bed Skirt Length||Bed Skirt Width||Example of Bed Skirt from Amazon||Price of Bed Skirt|
|Twin||75 inches||38 inches||39 inches||75 inches||Utopia Bedding Easy Fit Soft Quadruple Pleated Dust Ruffle Bed Skirt||~$10|
|Full||75 inches||53 inches||55 inches||76 inches||Hotel Luxury 1800 Platinum CollectionDust Ruffle Bed Skirt||~$15|
|Queen||80 inches||60 inches||81 inches||61 inches||Biscayne Bay Easy Fit Wrap-Around Bed Skirt with Elastic Dust Ruffles||~$20|
|King||75 inches||76 inches||80 inches||78 inches||PureFit Satin Silk Pom Pom Ruffled Wrap-Around Bed Skirt with Adjustable Elastic Belt||~$20|
If you have an adjustable bed, be sure to check out our article on choosing bed skirts for adjustable beds for appropriate options. Also, if you've ever wondered how a dust ruffle differs from a bed skirt, make sure to read our article comparing bed skirts vs dust ruffles to find out more.
How to Choose a Bed Skirt for a Low Profile Bed with a Mattress
If you have a low-profile bed (or any other unusual height measurement), it is even more important to take precise measurements and accurately calculate exactly how the bed skirt will fit and hang.
To choose a bed skirt for a low profile bed, first measure the width and length of the top of the bed. Then, determine if the bed skirt needs to touch the floor, for a modern look, or settle on it, for a traditional look. For a modern look, measure the height of the bed up till the bottom of the mattress and find a bed skirt that matches this drop height.
Make sure to also take a look at what bed skirt hardware do you need to install bed skirts to make sure that new bed skirt stays in place.
In a Nutshell
Bed skirts that are made of studier fabric with straight panels should be installed so that they sit slightly above or just touch the floor. Bed skirts with ruffles and flounces can be allowed to settle on the floor to create puddles of fabric for a more romantic look in the bedroom. For more ideas on bed skirt types and designs read our article on bed skirt styles.