Wednesday December 30th 2015

Visit Andi Reynolds’ Sewing Studio

Andi Reynolds, former AQS executive book editor, gave us a rare glimpse into her quilting space.

“Look at the great light in here,” she said. “Although I need to rethink how to store fabric to prevent fading, with the glass patio doors, a wall of windows, and port holes high on the third wall, there’s always a good time to be sewing in here with natural light, year round.”

Her current project is to explore techniques for making Liberated blocks and units a la Gwen Marston. “Although I don’t have the time to sew from every inspiring book published at AQS, it has been so much fun to sew out of Liberated Medallion Quilts. I’m making Liberated star units. Each one is a surprise and a revelation. No telling what I’ll do with them.”

“When I run out of design wall space here, there’s always the bedrooms, the family room, the garage…”

Like so many quilters, Andi’s sewing room is populated with UFOs. The Civil War Album quilt she started in the mid-1990s is about one-third quilted, 20 years later. “My quilting time is limited, so it’s taking me forever to finish this wonderful bed quilt.” Multiple pieced tops wait for hand quilting, which is her preferred therapy mode.

“My husband’s cooking improves in direct correlation to the time I spend quilting.”

“I’d love to say that I’m as prolific a quilter now as I was before I started working at AQS in 2008, but that pales in comparison to the honor and privilege to have had so many talented and creative quilters share their ideas. I quilt vicariously every time I handle a piece of art for a book or pattern proposal.”


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5 Comments for “Visit Andi Reynolds’ Sewing Studio”

  • Roberta Hodge says:

    I also love had quilting. Can Andi Reynolds share what she uses for batting for large and small quilts? Also, how does she baste her larger quilts?

    • Andi Reynolds says:

      My favorite hand quilting batt to date has been the wool batt I used to recreate an antique Carolina Lily quilt for my parents’ 40th anniversary. (They received it on their 49th…) I used silk thread from Japan purchased from a now extinct catalog business, and I’ve never seen its like since — but man, it was like quilting through butter with the cotton top and back, wool batt, and silk thread. This was not thin silk thread as used for applique, but it was wonderful. So it’s not just the batt choice — it’s the thread, too.

      Prior to the wool batt, my choice was thin 100 percent cotton batts for both large and small projects. I just purchased a silk batt at our Des Moines show and can’t wait to try it out. Anyone have any comments about working with silk batts? How about bamboo batts?

      As for basting, the last large quilt I basted was the repro quilt shown in the photo and that was in the mid-1990s. Back then I could crawl around on the floor and thread baste — no more! When I make my next large quilt, I will find a place that has large tables, push them together, and invite friends to a thread basting party.

      Although I am a big fan of fusible batts and spray-basting for smaller pieces, I think thread basting works best for my slow-as-can-be quilting style when I know the three layers will go through a lot of punishment before the quilting thread can do its job.

      For the record, I really do not like pin basting, even for quick projects, but that’s what is so great about quilting. Pin basting works great for lots of quilters, and there is almost always more than one great way to do something!

      • Ann Holmes says:

        Hi Andi,
        I wanted to say Hi – I hope that you are doing well.
        You have a wonderful studio. I enjoyed having a peek into it.
        Take care and Best Wishes for health and a fun filled retirement.
        Ann Holmes

  • Marilyn Kelley says:

    Andi, found you on Youtube, hi! We miss you at Quilters Unlimited, but are so proud of you at AQS. Loui Tope and I go with some others to Jacksonville once a month. We are in the B-a-a-a-d Girls Club and work with wool. It is led by Gloria Parsons who once owned The Olde Green Cupboard in Jax. Fun times. Don’t know if you’ve been able to keep up, but the Sunshine Stste Quilters Quild has disbanded, so sad. We did have some good times going around the state to the meetings. Just wanted to send a note to say I saw you! Marilyn Kelley

  • Pat Krov says:

    In the McCall’s magazine article on Summer Fun Teaching Kids to Quilt the girls are holding up a simple cross block pattern. I am teaching my grandkid’s and was hoping you could share that cross pattern so they may try it, it’s modern and they liked it. If you have a link for this pattern it would be appreciated.


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