Late? Moi? It's been known to happen.
But when its something for Monique. Not a chance. Done. Finished. But I'll get back to that by and by.
You do know what that means, right? You've got TWO chances to win a copy of Traditional Fat Quarter Quilts!
Or SEVEN... if you remember that it's not too late to see the projects and leave comments for:
- Thelma - who has been making a Simply Abundantly wonderful version of Pyramid -- Cupcakes n' Daisies
- Lisa - who overcame her fear of Spiders by... well, playing with Spider -- Stashmaster
- Denise - who has been playing with Solitaire and she's winning! -- Quilter's Window
- Monique herself! She made... wait, she made them all! -- Open Gate Quilts
- Sherri - who made a beautiful table runner using the blocks from Canasta -- A Quilting Life
Now... about Miss Monique.
I first met her about five years ago on a trip to Rockford, Illinois ~ though I sometimes think we might have met at Market the year before.
On a side note... This picture was taken on that trip and one of the reasons I've saved it is to remember the lovely woman seated next to me - she's the one with the sweet smiling face, wearing the blue jacket on the left. Her name was Pam Wieland and she was the Moda rep in Illinois, she was also one of the nicest people I've met in the quilting business. The proceeds from Collection for a Cause Heritage were donated to Gilda's Club in memory of Pam.
When I met Monique, we hit it off immediately, chattering away about basketball, sports, the Phoenix Suns, Steve Nash, quilts, patterns, dogs and a whole slew of other things. One of the highlights of going to Market for me is always dinner with Monique - and a gaggle of our friends. Because Spring Market is always during the NBA playoff season, everybody has to give us a few minutes to talk about the Suns, the playoffs and our mutual dislike for those teams that are the nemeses of the Suns.
Over the course of those Markets, new friends and faces have made appearances and it has resulted in some amusement at one of my quirks. (That's the wonderful thing about good friends, they show no restraint when it comes to having a good laugh at some of your idiosyncracies.) You see, no matter what you've heard or the impression that I sometimes leave with people, I'm fairly outgoing... as in, I'm not very shy. And because I know some people are a little more reserved, I try to make sure they feel comfortable in a large, boisterous group where most of the folks already know each other by making sure that there are introductions. Since I seem to have a knack for remembering names, I seem to wind up... okay, I take it upon myself to do it.
While you've technically already met Monique, I would like to make sure you know a little more about her... some "did you know's".
Monique is from Canada... but did you know that Monique was the First Runner-Up for Miss Canada? She was Miss Manitoba -- that's near Winnipeg! She won the Talent Competition with a dazzling display of re-arranging blocks on a revolving design wall. While twirling a flaming rotary cutter.
The following year, Monique broke Canadian hearts when she moved to Illinois to become a world-renowned quilter. Por quoi? Monique was a champion curler and it was feared that her departure would be a devastating setback for Team Canada in the Curling competition at the Olympics. In fact, one of her upcoming patterns will be titled Bonspiel.
Monique likes to listen to music while she sews, and her preference is for hard rock or Alternative. Her two favorite bands are Avenged Sevenfold and Red. While at retreat, her friends insist on a "compromise" station on the satellite radio, a station best described as "light 80s pop". She also likes Air Supply so whatever you do, don't say anything bad about them. (Even if you're making it up just to tease her.)
Did you know that Monique is a bag lady? Seriously! She's an accomplished, skilled, talented maker of tote bags, handbags and any sort of little zipper bag. While she hasn't really done any as patterns, she's probably made at least one of everybody else's... after changing one or two things to customize it, of course.
While you already know that Monique is a big fan of the Phoenix Suns, did you know that one of her favorite players is/was Raja Bell? Even though he's now with the Utah Jazz.
While she was here, I got to meet Monique's older brother, Mike, his wife, Tina, and their girls, Holly and Blaire. If you thought Monique was the only creative artist in her family, you should see Mike's artwork. He sent me the most amazing drawing of my favorite hockey player.
But did you know that Monique was once pursued by Steve, back when they were very young and still living in Canada?
As a fabric designer, Monique has done two beautiful collections for Maywood. While she will always love Olde World Style because it was the first, I suspect her second collection is her favorite though she won't really tell anyone why...
I think you already know that Monique is the designer/inventor/creator of the best rulers in quilting - the Fit to be Geese, Fit to be Geese Mini, Fit to be Square and Fit to be Quarter. They will change your life. Really. Just ask Nicole. And Sherri. And Lisa. And Thelma. And Denise.
Now. About that book that you really are going to want and need. Your life won't be complete without it... okay, your life might be but your quilt library sure won't be!
This is it. Eleven projects - and each project comes with all the cutting requirements and numbers for making the quilt in four different sizes. Technically, that's forty-four projects. If you're counting... which I did.
I chose Baccarat. This is Monique's quilt.
Hehehe My blog. My fantasy. And yes, this is a gratuitous picture that has nothing to do with quilts, books or Monique. But are you really going to complain?
Back to Baccarat... this is the block. It measures 16" x 16".
There are Flying Geese that can be made with the Fit to be Geese ruler.
There is also a nifty little piecing trick for making another step in the block, it involves a twist on a connector corner.
Because this is what I wound up with...
Yes, Monique let me do just one big block, which I made into a new pillow. The good news -- the only thing left to do is to stitch down the binding. It's quilted and finished except for that. The bad news? One of the middle-of-the-star half-triangle squares is turned the wrong way and I didn't notice it until now. Ooops.
But I'll fix that next time as I would like to make this again, either as a full quilt or as another pillow. I think this block/quilt lends itself to playing with the color placement to emphasize the stars and create additional secondary patterns. I also think this would be interesting made with two backgrounds -- one lighter and one darker.
As with all of the quilts in the book ~ yes, I read the whole thing ~ the blocks are broken down into easily made units. The best thing is that everything fits the way it is supposed to because, did I mention that Monique is a math major?
So there you have it... a book you need. A book you can win just by leaving a comment... but that's not all. Just by leaving a comment, you could win a Monique-centric goodie bag from moi. It includes a complete set of all four Open Gate rulers, a little sampling of her Memories of Provence fabric (No, Keanu is not included.), a bag of one of her favorite retreat snacks/candies - red licorice, and Monique's favorite pins. Okay, maybe they're not her favorite pins but they're my favorite pins and because she's my friend, that makes them her favorite pins too.
So just leave a comment by midnight on Sunday -- Arizona time. Right now, that means Pacific Time. (Don't ask, just take my word for it.)
Before I let you go... just to make sure... I did make a few things up.
But one thing is definitely true -- Monique is a terrific quilter and author, and a really nice lady.
After all, she's known me long enough that she had to have had a pretty good idea that I was going to do something like this. And yet, she still invited me to hop.
Have a great weekend!