The open matchbook that is pictured above is my contribution to twelve-year-old Augusta Dexheimer's Wedding Pillow Project. Gus and I go way back: Her parents are former Westword staff writers Eric Dexheimer and Robin Chotzinoff. So when Gus called and told me that she was celebrating her bat mitzvah year by trying to legalize same-sex marriage in an auction of one-of-a-kind ring pillows created by her friends, I begged to be included. I can't sew, but I wanted to create a matchless ring pillow... The oversized matchbook pictured above is approximately 4.75 inches wide by 6 inches tall (12 inches when open). I wrote "run for cover before striking" as a warning that preventing people from expressing their love will lead to disastrous consequences!
The Perfect Matchbook is a hand-drawn original Kenny Be artwork that is now included in The Pillow Project Auction. Bidding began on January 2, 2011, and continues until noon MST on January 16. All proceeds will be donated to the American Foundation For Equal Rights (www.afer.org), a California organization fighting against Proposition 8 -- and for marriage equality.
If my wedding pillow doesn't exactly light your fire, then look below to see if Elvis's Gay Wedding Pillow by Denver Post travel editor Kyle Wagner is more suited to your taste... Elvis's Gay Wedding Pillow pictured above takes celebrity as its central theme, while Gus's father, Eric Dexheimer, draws from the cinema for his Brokeback Pillow shown below. Below, some world travelers included in the Pillow Project skipped Hollywood entirely and went (not so) straight for Bollywood. The wedding pillow seen above, by Denverite Ashley Rust, was made of fabric from India. The wedding pillow below was made by Augusta's aunt, Marina Chotzinoff, who also lives in Denver and has a habit of being naturally tasteful in all endeavors. She and two friends sewed pillows on the afternoon of Gus's official pillow-making party last December. Marina, so impressed that a twelve-year-old would tackle such a complicated topic with such open certainty and conviction, now lives by the motto that little steps in big groups make great strides. It truly is amazing. This entire event was organized by Gus, who is in seventh grade and will become a bat mitzvah on her thirteenth birthday. She has an excellent sense of humor, and thinks that the lack of marriage equality in this country is "appalling. Simply appalling." Her passion can be seen below, in the pillow she created for the project that means so much to her. Gus Dexheimer's wedding pillow, pictured above, is all the more special because the pattern simplicity and repetition signify a consistent and balanced love between people of different stripes. Below, the wedding pillow of twelve-year-old Brady McEvoy shows that his designs for a better world are inspired by fort-building, music and baseball. Below, nine-year-old True McEvoy creates a wedding pillow that runs rings around itself and others... The wedding pillow pictured above is made of cotton apple and pineapple prints, then embroidered and appliqued by a brilliant nine-year-old boy. The rings are particularly unusual. True McEvoy made circles out of blue satin cord and battened them down with red and green embroidery thread. Below, the Good Wife Guide Wedding Pillow contains the secrets to being witty and conversant. The Pillow Project includes a total of 48 handmade pillows. They are small and large, fancy and plain, traditional and eccentric. Materials used include everything from cotton to velvet to steel to cardboard to oil paint and canvas -- but each pillow has two rings, whether symbolic or real.
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Thanks, Gus! With your help in the fight for marriage equality, the new year already looks more lovely.