I Miss Blogging!

Good Morning!  I was searching through my blog the other day for something and realized I really miss blogging and sharing (in more depth) what I am up to these days!  SEW – from now on I will be blogging more frequently to let you know what I am working, what we have new in the shop, where I am teaching etc.

First of all – thank you to all that have stopped by the shop since we opened – we are grateful.  In our effort to show our gratitude we have a monthly give-a-way!  July we gave away this quilt!  Fear not – I have a pattern available if you did not win but would still like to have this festive quilt to show your love for the USA!


I also want to share this adorable quilt with you – the fabrics are by Cori Dantini – my new favorite fabric designer!  My granddaughter is part of an acting ensemble and her very first play was “Into the Woods” and she played the granny – so of course I had to buy this fabric collection!  We have this wonderful kit available for you!  Call us for more information!


I have been asked to help Quiltworx complete a quilt for the new technique of the month – Vintage Rose!  The color way is designed by Judel and the fabrics are from Island Batik!

Here is what I have done so far – be sure to “follow” the blog to stay up to date!

You can also keep up to date with our shenanigans on Facebook and Instagram – both under HollyDee Quilts!



Posted in 405 E Davis Luling TX, HollyDee Quilts, Uncategorized, Vintage Rose | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

PUP’s and Memphis

Last Friday we arrived in Memphis.  I would be teaching the quilters at Pickin Up the Pieces Quilt Guild on Saturday.  We decided to hit Rendezvous for a few ribs and then head over to Beale street.  (Ribs photos can be found on Facebook and Instagram!)

I will be back in Memphis at the end of September as the featured teacher for this quilt guild.  If you would like more information about this guild or the retreat, please send me a note and I will forward it to their guild!

I think if you click on a photo you will get more information about each photo!  For all the quilts seen from the workshop I have kits available!

I hope you enjoy this sneak peak into the life of a Judy Niemeyer Certified Instructor.  We get to meet so many amazing quilters and along the way make some great friends!



Posted in Quiltworx, Show and Share, Workshops | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

A Mariner’s Compass!

One of my students made this beautiful Mariner’s Compass; then I was asked to quilt it!  She patiently waited for this quilt to move up the list of quilts to be quilted!  I sent her a couple of sneak peek photos once it was loaded.  But this did not prepare her for what she would receive – upon receipt of the quilt and shams her note to me said simply  “It Came!  It takes my breath away!”  Another happy client!  Her quilt was so stunning to begin with – the choice of classic colors made this an amazing quilt to start with.  She had sent me a pieced back originally.  Then it was determined she would need to send me a different back; I must say I was so excited to use the new backing as I knew the quilting would be stand out!

Without further ado – I will now share some quick photos of Pat’s quilt.  You will be able to see it in all it’s glory in May at the Lakeview Quilters Quilt Show.  I will also be a vendor there!  I hope to see you!  PS – my shop opens the week AFTER the LQG show!


NOTE: I have removed the slideshow and replaced with photos – slideshow was playing inconsistently.

I would appreciate some feedback regarding the slideshow – do you like it?  Or do you prefer individual photos with comments?


Posted in HollyDee Quilts, How Would Quilt This, Quiltworx, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

Houston! We have a Rodeo and Quilts!

Texas is BIG and Houston is HUGE!!!  So is the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo!  There are many Go-Texan competitions as part of Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo and on more than one occasion I have been asked to be a participant in the “Quilts” Competition. Even having a quilt I own – take Best of Show Metro along with several other ribbons that year!

So there is a story that goes with this quilt.  I purchased the top at my guild auction in 2003 and it was bidding war to the end.  Luckily some folks sitting near by adversary convinced her I was not going to give up and she finally stopped bidding.  What she did not know, is my final bid was truly my final bid – had she bid one more time this beauty would’ve gone home with her.  I arrived home and tentatively showed my hubby – he wondered out-loud what this had cost him; I don’t think I told him that night!  Fast forward to May 2004, I entered my now finished quilt in the Lakeview Quilters Guild show, out of 3 entries in its category it took 3rd.  I had it appraised that year and I highly recommend you have your special quilts appraised, this one appraised for 4 x my initial purchase of the top.  Some interesting information regarding appraisals – the backing fabric DOES matter.  As part of the quilt I was given a beautiful Jane Sassaman for the back; that added value.  I used to say “it’s just the back” but not anymore.  Also, the number of years you have been quilting, your status in the quilting community and many other little things add to the value of your quilt.  I have considered having this quilt re-appraised because my status in the quilting world has changed and it is probably more valuable now.  Fast forward to 2006, I was asked to allow this quilt to represent the NASA/Clearlake/Friendswood Go-Texan Region and I of course agreed.  Well this quilt, took Best of Show, 3 first places and a judges choice!  Be sure to view the photo of the label I included below – I give these women ALL the credit for any ribbons this quilt has received.  I am just the quilter and the proud owner!



Another block! The background is a Hoffman 1895, color Havana – I have been known to purchase this by the bolt! All the fabric in this quilt are batiks. The patterns for the blocks were from a book by Jane Townswick


A close-up of one of the blocks in Chocolat


This is the second label for this quilt. Prior to shipping it off to Houston for the competition I wanted to update the label to include that it was part of the 2006 HLSR Quilt Competition. This label is significant to me because it reminds me who made each block and/or border. These talented women are members of the Lakeview Quilters Guild and there work is some of the finest I have seen when it comes to appliqué!

For 2016 I was asked to quilt this quilt for the competition.  I do love how these wool appliqué quilts quilt up!  Be sure to find this quilt when you visit the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo this year – be sure to share your photos!  Here are my photos; but they never do the quilt justice because the quilt is not yet trimmed and there is no binding.  The binding always just gives a quilt that polished look!


An overall view of Ronda’s beautiful wool appliqué quilt!


A dragonfly close-up – doesn’t this make you smile?


The border – appliqué and piecing


A basket of sunflowers


Another view of the back – more light this time


And one more of the back – do you need a drool bib yet?

Wishing this quilt and it’s owner best wishes in the quilt competition for Houston 2016!


Posted in Friendships, HollyDee Quilts, How Would Quilt This, Quilting | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Sharing the Love

I have joined a group of bloggers on Facebook – the goal of the group is to inspire each other to set goals for blogging.  I set a goal to post on Monday and Thursday of each week.  Today my post is short and sweet!

I may have missed the boat on this one, I should’ve posted it on Valentine’s day, but I didn’t!  Do you still love me?

This beautiful quilt uses a technique called “reverse appliqué”  It gives a little bit of extra dimension to the piece.  Another term used here is “cutwork appliqué”  Cutwork appliqué reminds me of when we would paper and then make cuts for snowflakes….do you still do this sometimes?  Have you ever done it with fabric?  To add additional dimension I used 2 battings, cotton and then a layer of wool.

I hope you enjoy today’s share – even though it is a few days late!

PS – if you would like to see this quilt in person; it is part of the “Best Little Quilt Show in Texas” Fayette County Fairgrounds –  La Grange, TX.  February 26 & 27, 2016

Have a fabulous day!



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Block Swap Re-Visited

For many years I have been a member of Lakeview Quilters Guild!  My first meeting was in August of 1997, they were talking about a retreat.  Sounded interesting so I signed up and a couple of weeks later I headed to Round Top TX with a new friend on a new adventure.  I was attending a retreat with 65 quilters, most of whom I had never met.  Pat and I were assigned to the 3rd floor but the a/c was not working on that side of the 3rd floor.  There were a couple of beds for us in the other house, the stairs to our second floor were the old fashioned, teeny tiny steep stairs and we both opted to stay in the other building on the 3rd floor with no a/c.  We opened the windows at night and it really was quite pleasant.  We were really lucky because future years with heat hovering in the high 90’s we would’ve been toast trying to sleep with no a/c.

This retreat holds a special place for me – it is always held the weekend after Labor day and the facility is amazing – the friendship we enjoy there is even better!  Over the years I have been able to share this special event with my sister, nieces (from GA and UT), my daughter-in-law and numerous friends.  I love to walk from room to room and house to house just visiting with friends and learning from each of them.  Sometimes I even sew!  It is always very inspiring!

I love to do block swaps and one year (2002 or 2003)  I gathered a group to swap 16 blocks, they had to make 16 beautiful fall blocks AND add sashing with a corner stone on two sides.  The rules changed and while we did make the sashing and corner stone we did not attach them.  We had 1 year to make our blocks and sashing.  We had no deadline for finishing the quilt.  I received a call in 2015, one of the group was so excited, she had finished her quilt and needed it quilted.  She used a technique by Sharyn Craig called Twist N Turn to set her blocks.

“Side Note” – Sharyn Craig was the first speaker I saw at the Lakeview Quilters Guild and her program was the best thing I had ever seen, her quilts were beautiful and she was so funny and inspiring and genuine!  When she came back to our guild several years later I was worried that she would not be as good as I remembered since that had been my first guild meeting ever!  Well, she did not disappoint the second time around, she was even better!

I have not been able to visit my old guild since I 2014 when we moved to the “country”, however, in bringing everything full circle, I will be participate as a vendor at their bi-annual quilt show May 13 & 14.  The women in this guild are the reason I am opening a quilt shop to share my passion with other quilters.  My guild is full of inspirational women that have always shared their gift and passion with me!  Thinking of them makes me smile!

So I guess you want to Cherie’s quilt now?  It is beautiful!

These blocks were amazing, Linda A. made the feathered stars, Karla made the pine-burr blocks.  Several chose beautiful blocks designed by Carol Doak.

Do you do block swaps?  I know so many quilters that don’t because they don’t get back a “perfect” block.  What I get back are memories!  That is why I love doing block swaps!  Perfection can be over-rated!

Go make someone’s day special!  Give them a smile!  It’s free and it will make you feel GREAT!


Posted in HollyDee Quilts, How Would Quilt This, Retreats, Show and Share | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

The Next Chapter

I may have mentioned in an earlier post that my word for the year is “ACTUALIZE”.  I wanted something that would inspire me to do the things I really want to do and not procrastinate.  Life is short, make the most of it.

Back in 1995 I started quilting, I think the seed was planted then that I wanted to own a quilt shop and share my new passion with everyone I came in touch with.  A few years later while taking a workshop from Mary Lou Weidman she asked each of us what our favorite part of quilting was; I replied sharing what I know with other quilters.  Time Warp to 2011 I became a certified instructor for Judy Niemeyer Quilting aka Quiltworx and I have had a blast.  Traveling around Texas and even outside of Texas to teach and vend at shows has been so much fun; but I want to be more productive in my own community.

As you recall in 2014 we made the BIG move to the SMALL town of Luling, TX.  There is just something about this town that calls upon me to make an impact!  While we are not residents of Luling; we live just past the county line; I consider Luling my new hometown!

So begins the next chapter, and I am so excited about it!  I have found a perfect little building right on the main drag.  The owners have just completed a fabulous renovation and I must say it is full of charm and excitement.  I can’t wait to share the inside with you – but for now you will have to whet your appetite with a few photos of the outside and the town.

For you to really appreciate the work that has been done I will start with a before photo from google.

Screenshot 2016-02-10 08.16.17

The before photo!


The address! 405 E Davis


The building, original brick, new awning, new doors and windows.


Looking forward to seeing what my sign bidders come up with!


Two doors down from the shop! It’s all happening here the last weekend in June! Two doors down in the other direction is a cute little shop that sells “beverages”

Stay tuned as I will be sharing photos from the inside soon.  You will also get a sneak peek at the fabrics that will be lining our shelves!

Looking forward to seeing you all VERY SOON!


Posted in 405 E Davis Luling TX, HollyDee Quilts, Luling | Tagged , , , , , , | 7 Comments

A Year in the Life of – ME!

2015 was a busy year for us.  We had just moved into our new home.

In the studio we had shelving to build, peg board to hang, cabinetry to place.  Lots of rearranging as I decided to tweak things, 256 sf of design walls to put up.

Join local groups; Luling Fiber Arts.  Create new groups; Settlement Magnolias.  Just to name a couple…

My travel included a cruise where I was teaching, NQA in Little Rock where I was teaching and vending, Montana for a tune-up and so much more. My treasured time is when I am quilting with long-time friends and we are enjoying each others company (or when I am with my hubby!)

48 Retreat/Quilt To You Wilt/Cruise days, most of these where a taught, but a couple where I was a lucky participant! 6 visits to guilds to provide lectures and workshops! 22 workshop days at various shops usually involving 2 or more hours of travel each way! 6 shows including NQA in Little Rock.  1 Guest Artist appearance at a show where I was a vendor had a special exhibit and daily bed-turnings.

4 days of Farm Camp for the Grandkids, 7 days of Camp Dee-Dee with the Grandkids!  Enjoyed 2 plays that my granddaughter was in, baseball games for the grandson as well as other family time events!

And along the way I finished a few quilts, a couple of them were started prior to 2015, but many were started and made it to top stage in 2015.  I also quilted several quilts for customers (but not as many as I used to!)

Here are most of the finishes for 2015….


The original “One” was my first finish of 2015. Be sure to look at the close-up photo of the beading a fellow quilter added for me!


While in Little Rock a delightful quilter offered to bead my quilt for me – it was already quilted but she very carefully hand stitched each bead on, only going through the top layers! She even put the binding on it before shipping it back to me! I just love quilters! Pattern “One”


My 2nd “One” of the year! I have another one that just needs the leaf stitched down! I look forward to teaching this quilt again and again! It is fun!


Paradise in Blooms, started, finished, quilted and bound in 2015! WooHoo!


A beauty that was started this year – but I may need to go visit my friend Lisa at Compass Point Quilts in NH to finish it!


Tea Time Placemats. I love making these leaf quilts. I have kits and patterns available at my online store.


Vintage Compass – made as a sample for Pinwheels and Posies in Dickinson, TX. They have kits!


My 2nd Prismatic Star of the year. I cannot get enough of this quilt! It is so quick and easy to make. Kits and pattern available at my online store.


Paddlewheel using Judy and Judel Niemeyers fabric collection, Reclaimed West. Pattern is still available at my online store. All fabrics were donated by Timeless Treasures and I did a 2 part blog tutorial for how I made this quilt. See part 1 here.


Landscape table runner made and kitted for the cruise I taught on in May. All kits are pre-cut ready to sew! Including the papers for one table runner. Kit includes papers to make 3 more quilts, they just aren’t precut! I have included a photo of the back of this quilt so you can see my “upside down” quilting!


The back of my Landscapes Table Runner so you can see the quilting. This backing fabric was approx 24″ wide, purchased on Maui in 2001, just waiting for the perfect quilt.


A small sample made to show the fabrics in kits I have available when teaching Seasonal Table Runner/Table Topper.

Screenshot 2015-12-31 08.40.51

This quilt is at Hancocks of Paducah right now so I am using the new coversheet for the photo. I made this quilt for Quiltworx, while I was there in July. Constellation is from the book Geese Migrations; available on my site!


Vintage Compass made for Certified Shop Pinwheels and Posies.  Kits available from them!


Osprey’s Nest, downsized. OK I got really tired of making geese – so I figured out what I could make with all those fabulous log cabin blocks and the geese I had done. So far 1 table topper, 1 table runner and 2 placemats. I will also have the mirror image of the table topper when I am done! Pattern available on the site!


Dancing in the Moonlight! A silhouette of my granddaughter from a photo where she was dancing at camp in 2014. A friend took the tiny photo and made it life size for me. The blocks in the background are Garden Wall and available on the site. I used an ombre for my backgrounds and a Judy Niemeyer Bali pre-sorted Pops set for the accents.


Some of the piecing for this quilt was started many moons (aka years) ago. AndSewItBegan asked me to come teach this at her retreat house so I figured I better get it together. I used a Kaufman Khaki for the background and hand-dyes for the accent fabrics. This pattern is Southern Beauty aka Sleeping Beauty by Sue Garman. Don’t you love Sue’s work?


This year I joined the Luling Fiber Arts group and our leader, Kelly, taught us how to make this fun convergence quilt. This quilt is small but was made in 2 hours, including all cutting!


Those are all silks on the wall, my WoodCarvers star is in progress! Any bets on a finish date? Pattern uses the new lone star technique and is available on the site!


I cannot take all the credit for this one. Most of the paper-piecing was done while in Montana, but not by me. My 3 Australian friends did not bring enough of their own projects so they worked on mine! This quilt is called Chasing Rainbows and can be found in the Geese Migrations Book (available on this site). I used 2 different ombre fabrics for the color and black batik. I hope to have kits for this quilt very soon.


These 4 quilts were completed by me to be donated to our local first responders! They will be quilted very soon!


My version of Prairie Pinwheels. This quilt was fun and easy to make and I was able to use all stash fabrics! What a great quilt for a young child! Pattern available at my online store.


Not finished but wanted to include it. I need to piece and add the borders. This pattern is called Indian Summer and is available at my online store. This sample is made with lots of Kaffe Fassett fabrics and black/whites. All purchased at Pinwheels and Posies Quilt Shop.


Diamond Wedding Ring NEW version! I made the original version many many years ago and let me tell you it was not for the faint of heart. There were at least 8 billion Y seams! This quilt is assembled with ZERO Y seams. Quick and easy paper-piecing and custom creative grids rulers make this quilt a snap! Rulers and patterns available in the store! All fabrics (except the outer border) were purchased in June 2015 from Valli and Kim in Dripping Springs, TX. The background has all kinds of appropriate sayings for a couple in love!


Fractured Paint Box – she’s a little loud but was so fun to make. The center is made from a very dark green accent and Kaufman solids strip set. The border was left over backing from a wedding quilt I made a couple of years ago; purchased in Maui when we attended the wedding! I love destination weddings – how about you?


I have ended the year with “Three” I started this on Christmas Day, it went very quickly. Kits will be available on my site soon! This one is called Lemons, Limes and Satsumas; we had those 3 trees in our backyard before we moved. Picking fresh fruit around Christmas each year and burying your nose in the fabulous blossoms each spring. I miss those trees!


A year in the review. Of course there are other quilts that are started but I did not include! I have to save something for next year right? (as I look at this photo I realize there is one here that did not get featured above)


Let’s all make 2016 fabulous!


Posted in HollyDee Quilts, How Would Quilt This, Luling Fiber Arts, Pinwheels and Posies, Quilt Shows, Quiltworx, Retreats, Settlement at Patriot Ranch, Tutorials, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Winter Solstice – Dad’s Birthday

My dad died when I was only 7 so my memories are short, but sweet.  Through the years I have pieced together some family history and I am honoring my father with a post today.  He would’ve been 109 years old today!  He was 57 when I was born and I was his first born.

A little piece of history on my father – his first wife was the niece of Butch Cassidy and they were married in Butch Cassidy’s fathers home.  They never had children.

Born in Midway, UT to David Edwin Bunnell and Estelle Peters Bunnell, he was the first born of 10 children.  My father was named Ferry E Bunnell, my mom did not know what the E stood for, but I have learned it was for Edwin, after his father.  Where the Ferry came from, I do not know.  I can tell you he went by Larry.

Stories from my mom tell me that on his 16th birthday he went to work in the mines in Park City, UT.  Someday I hope to verify some of this.  He worked odd jobs through out his job and supported our family as a dishwasher at the Denny’s in Elko, NV at one point.  He died on August 4, 1970, just 4 days before my younger sister’s 4th birthday.  She knew even less of our father due to lengthy stays at Shriners Hospital when she was young.

Growing up I knew my Uncle Bill Bunnell and his wife, June.  I also was acquainted with my Aunt June Bunnell Walker when I was young.  Imagine my surprise when I started working on my family history and found there had been many more aunts and uncles out there!   In 2010 I was able to meet my Aunt Hazel and my Aunt Darlene, both have passed now.  My meeting them is a life treasure!  I have also met a few cousins through my research, this is quite fun!  I love that Facebook in particular helps me to keep up with a few Bunnell Family happenings.  I have also found Curtis and Fornia cousins out there as well, but that is story for another day!

Here are a few photos with the simple stories I know.


Bunnell Family Crest. Someday I may learn what each symbol signifies….

2015-12-21 10.43.21

This is a photo of my dad! Precious! Given to me by Bill and June Bunnell!

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My dad! This photo survived the many moves of my childhood.

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My dad and his new sister, Iva. Canada 1911.

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My Aunt Hazel, holding my Aunt June. *Aunt June Bunnell Walker

2015-12-21 10.36.32

My first Christmas; Elko, NV at my mom’s best friends home; Dorothy Chase. I am named after her son Dennis!

2015-12-21 10.37.14

A better photo?

2015-12-21 10.43.35

At my grandfather, David Edwin Bunnell’s funeral. See the little tyke in the upper right corner! That is ME, my dad is holding me and my mom is next to him. Are you in this photo? Or your parents?

2015-12-21 10.44.02

The Bunnell Siblings at the funeral of their father; David Edwin Bunnell. My dad is on the far left – please help identify the other family members and I will update!

2015-12-21 10.43.52

The Bunnell Boys at their fathers funeral! My dad on the far left.


Aunt Hazel 97 years young! She was amazing. She lived in AZ and had been a widow for many many years. She had chosen the particular apartment at her facility because it was close to the swimming pool When we visited in November of 2010 she stated that she was only swimming once a day because it was a little chilly this time of year! Here we are looking at my computer probably photos of my grandkids!


My cousin Yvonne – she is a photographer and takes amazing photos! However she did not take this one! I wish we lived closer because I am sure we could get into mischief together! Her father was my dad’s brother Bert!


Aunt Darlene, who I also met on my whirlwind trip in November 2010. Another treasured photo as she is no longer with us either!


Yvonne rescued our family history when my dad’s aunt Iva passed. Her husband Hank scanned each documented and then produced cd’s for each family that wanted one.


The family line


A Bunnell family home in New Jersey.


The Bunnell Church in Bonneuil, France.

May you blessed this Christmas season and surrounded by those that bring you joy!


Posted in Family History | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

One – Applique of the Leaf

You’ve been asking for it and here it finally is!  A tutorial for how I like to appliqué vines and similar quilt elements.  I am using the pattern “One” by Quiltworx for my example.

The first thing you need to do is determine how wide you want your vein.  I have 2 samples here.  Captains Wheel is the first one, it has a very thin “rope”.  The next is ONE and I used a wider cut strip for this one.  I make a sample out of scrap fabric and just do the steps to see what I will like.  Be sure to use contrasting fabrics for your sample.


This is “rope” on my Captain’s Wheel quilt. I have placed the dime so you can see how small this one finishes. This strip was cut 1″


Here it is folded in half and stitched down


This one is 1 1/2″. Press wrong sides together, like a binding strip


Here it is pressed


Stitch down with a straight stitch. All raw edges together. I used 1/4″ seam here


Stitched – ready to iron


Now iron!


Do NOT trim before ironing!  In this sample I did trim before ironing – OOPS!


In this photo I trimmed the end before I ironed – DO NOT DO THIS! IRON FIRST!


See what happened, after I pressed?  The angle is wrong!  Now I have 2 options, I can take the whole thing off and restitch — or – I can just trim the end of the leaf a little bit?  What do you think I did?


Now place the second side, leave each end a little long so you can fold it over for a nice finish.  If you are comparing my sample to the pattern you will notice I switched sides for the long/short edges.  It’s your quilt!



Stitch using approximately 1/4″ seam allowance, all raw edges lined up


PRESS – this is the top of the leaf.  See how much length I left?


Pressed – determine how long you want the stem at the bottom


Carefully trim and fold the end over for a nice finish


The stem at the bottom of the leaf  after I have folded the end for a nice finish.  I did take this back to machine and finish stitching to the end at the top and bottom.


Choose your thread colors, I wanted mine to blend, you may want them to accent. You may also want to use your favorite invisible thread


I used a button-hole stitch on this one, sometimes I use a tiny zig-zag


This is what the back looks like. The white straight stitch is from the first line of stitching I did. Then you see the yellow button-hole stitch


And ONE is DONE!

I hope you find this tutorial helpful.  I plan to do a few more so if you have any gentle critiques please post them in the comments.

Remember I am available to teach at your local quilt shop or your quilt guild.  You can find my schedule here.


Posted in Tutorials, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments