If you're seeing the verb quedar for the first time you're in a for treat, because this post is going to give your Spanish a huge boost. For the rest of you, you may be surprised to learn that quedar has more uses than you realized. And for those of you who are already experts, don't hesitate to comment about things I may have overlooked.
Manos a la obra...let's get to work.
You can use quedar as a synonym for estar when it comes to location.
¿Me ayuda por favor? No sé dónde queda la tienda.
Can you help me please? I don't know where the store is.
Dobla a la derecha. Ahí queda, junto al banco.
Turn right, it's right there, next to the bank
You could just have easily used estar in place of quedar. Why use quedar instead of estar? No reason at all to use one over the other, except for personal or regional preferences.
Quedar can be used to talk about what's left, or what's remaining.
¿Queda más pan?
Is there any bread left?
¿Cuánto tiempo nos queda?
How much time do we have left?
Nos quedan 20 minutos
We've got 20 minutes left
The idea of having something, or even nothing left over doesn't just extend to food and time.
Y con eso, me queda sin palabras
And with that, I'm speechless
Oddly enough, you can also use quedar to talk about your level of understanding.
Gracias por contestar mi pregunta, pero todavía no me queda muy claro.
Thanks for answering my question, but it's still not clear to me.
¿Te queda claro o todavía necesitas ayuda?
Is that clear or do you still need help?
Change the context and your tone of voice and you get a slightly different meaning.
¡Te dije que no! ¿Te queda claro?
I said no! Is that clear?
If you need to make arrangements to meet with someone, guess what verb you can use? Yep, you guessed it, quedar.
¿A qué hora vamos a quedar?
What time are we going to meet?
¿Quedamos a las 8?
Can we meet at 8?
Here's where things can get a little messy. When you use quedar in the present tense, you're making arrangements to meet, as in the examples above. But things aren't always quite so clear when you use quedar in the past tense. Here's an example.
That could mean one of two things.
We met yesterday.
Yesterday we agreed to meet.
So how do you know the difference? Context. Here are some less ambiguous examples.
¿Hablaste con Victor? Sí, quedamos ayer.
Did you talk to Victor? Yes, we met yesterday.
Ayer quedamos en que vamos a ir a cenar hoy
Yesterday we agreed to go dinner today.
I found this next usage of quedar a little surprising.
Todos los días paso por la heladería porque me queda de camino a casa
Everyday I pass by the ice cream shop because it's on my way home
¿Te queda en camino?
Is it on your way?
I actually posted about this ages ago. You can read about it here.
OK, time for the next usage.
When it comes to talking about how clothes look and fit on yourself or someone else, quedar is your verb of choice.
Eso te queda muy bien.
That looks good on you.
Te queda preciosa
It's looks great on you
¿Cómo me queda?
How do I look?
Notice I translated queda as look. The truth is, when it comes to clothing you can translate quedar as "to look" or "to fit" depending on the context. Honestly, it's just something you have to get a feel for by using it and hearing it used.
Here are some more examples.
No te queda
That doesn't suit you
In this case our sentence could mean "that's not you" / "that's not your style", or maybe even "that doesn't fit". Context will make the difference in translation. If you're trying on a bright red suit with yellow shoes and you're generally a conservative dresser, I'd go with "that's not your style".
Here are some more examples.
Creo que la falda que tienes, con esta blusa blanca, quedaría muy bonita.
I think that the skirt you have with this white blouse would look very pretty.
Te queda un poco suelto.
It's a little loose on you.
Te queda un poco ajustado.
It's a little tight on you.
Te queda chica (grande)
It's too small (big)
There's at least one other usage of quedar that I can think of, but but I'll get to that in an upcoming post. I'll also take a look at the verb quedarse, so stay tuned.
¡Hasta la próxima!