Category Archives: ongoing project

the boyfriend quilt

I decided that I was finally going to finish all the projects that I started and put aside because of (fill in the blank here). The Pauls left for a camping trip on Saturday afternoon. Right after they left, I walked through the house, rearranged things to fit my comforts. Cleaned the bedrooms, closed the doors to them, opened the back door to let in some outside air in, pulled out the projects and looked them over. Overwhelmed but able to plan it out in my head.

First thing to finish and send off was Iain’s comforter cover. We had gone to Beverly’s, picked out fabric, looked over patterns and ideas in November of 2009. Yup, that’s a while ago.  I just needed a back for it and it would be done. So, I got in the car and headed to Bed, Bath and Beyond. I picked out what I was looking for and strolled through the store to see what they had. The place is filled from ceiling to floor with STUFF but nothing that caught my eye. I’m not into filling my space up with STUFF so I headed home. I spent the afternoon pinning, sewing, cussing for making a mistake or two and then it was done. There that wasn’t so bad. It’s been mailed off. Let’s home the USPS doesn’t “lose” it.

The quilt that I intended on making for Small Paul needs to be done right so I contacted a woman who quilts with pretty stitches and dropped that off. All I need to do when I get it is put on the binding and done. I love that other people like to finish what I start.

Now Paul’s t-shirt comforter. I had to make sure the back matched the front, the front didn’t get messed up while I finished it and trying to finish it to make it look like it’s theme rather than fitting into the “quilt” box. I think I did a good job. All I need now are large safety pins to attach to the front to hold everything into place and give it an appropriate accent. I sewed it all and put it on the bed to surprise him when he got home from his camping trip.

When he got home, he was a bit beat up and tired but in good spirits. He had a great time with is son and was really happy to be home. I took him to the bedroom. He was it and “eeked” and with the happiest tone said “I’m a teenager again!!!!” He loves it. We slept in it last night. I did feel like the girlfriend sleeping over her boyfriends house with his special comforter and all that comes with it.

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Posted by on June 24, 2011 in ongoing project


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Done and did-The face anyway

I woke up this morning with the need to get something DONE. It didn’t matter what it was but something that was started and put away needed to be done so I could know that it was one less thing. I looked around and saw THE quilt. It was sitting in the corner of the dining room for over a month now because I’m done looking at the sewing machine and want to put it away. I can’t until I finish this quilt and a comforter cover that just needs the back put onto it. Really, a couple of hours of work and I never have to look at the damn machine again. What’s holding me back from finishing them? I find other things to do as I’m working my way toward the machine. Ooh! I can melt old albums, Ooh! I can rearrange the cupboards, Oh wait, I want to go through my stuff and see how much I can throw out. All in the name of not finishing what I started.

So this morning, I put everything out on the dining room table (my studio as I see it in my head) and went for it. Cut, iron, sew, iron, cut, cut, iron, sew, take a break, cut, iron, iron, cut, sew, sew, curse the project, iron, sew and wait what? I’m done? Wow okay then. The face is now completed. All I have to do is go to the fabric shop with Paul and have him pick out the color of the backing. And DONE!

What do I think of it? I like it fine I guess. I put it on the bed and it looks so GUY – Ya know like it belongs on a futon in a studio apartment of a 2-0 something guy living above a liquor store in the city. The half made bed next to the crate for a night stand with the full ashtray on it with the half burnt incense from the night before when the new girlfriend wanted to be romanced rather than fucked again. The rents cheap, the rats are great entertainment but MAN what the hell is that old lady across the hall cooking now! kinda place. That’s what it reminds me of.


Posted by on July 30, 2010 in ongoing project


The history (of the shirts)

I asked Paul to write up a bit about each of the shirts so that there would be history that I could connect to the shirts. Being the Paul that he is, he took it to be facts of what, where, when, and a slight smidge of what it smelled, felt, sounded like. That’s more me-no facts here just senses. I was going to write post it on my terms and just use as much as artistic license to make it more than it was but then I realized this is his and his words need to be respected. So here it is… The SHIRTS…

Love and Rockets ’85-86 I saw them at the Palladium in Hollywood in early 1986. They were just starting to get big. My date got nervous and we had to leave before the show ended.

The Cure-Beach Party Tour ’86 I went to this concert in ’86 with Debbie. Before The Cure went on, a guy on the floor level of the Forum pulled out a knife and started stabbing himself. He was throwing the knife in the air and brandishing it at people close to him. LAPD came in and whacked his knees, then the show started. The first song was 100 years. The 2nd was Piggy in the Mirror. During that Robert Smith pulled off his wig and reveal he’d shaved his head, which shocked the audience.

Sex Pistols Filthy Lucre ’96 I was delivering for Fatte’s in SLO and really busy with work and school. Uncle Craig called me and asked if I wanted to come down for a show. I said I couldn’t get time off unless it was one of the BIG punk legends I’d never got to see, like Black Flag, Sex Pistols or Dead Kennedys. He said it was Sex Pistols. Obviously, I got the time off.

Sloppy Seconds “You’ve Got a Great Body…” Great band. This shirt is from the only time I got to see them. I was in San Francisco with a bunch of other bands.

Vandals “Hitler Bad, Vandals Good” I’ve seen Vandals at least 10 times. Don’t know which time this shirt was from. But the first punk concert I ever went to in 1984 was Fear, Vandals and Uniform Choice, at Fenders Ballroom in Long Beach. At that show, I got punched by a skin head. I had hair in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Dickies “There’s Something about Jeff” This shirt was not actually purchased in Europe. It was a wrestling show in Pasadena that the Dickies headlined. I went with Craig and my mom.

TSOL “Social Chaos Tour” 7/25/99 From the same SF show I saw Sloppy Seconds and Misfits. Jack w/ TSOL is always funny as hell.  “Casey, the cops only bother you if you break laws”.

DI Lead singer for DI is Casey Royer. Craig became friends with him. We used to wonder (and be slightly horrified) if he would ask to crash on our couch after a show.

NIN @ SLO in ’06.  They were okay.

ADZ Transmissions from Planet Speedball Cool eye on shirt. Formerly The Adolescents. ADZ are good but Adolescents were better.

KROQ Inland Invasion 2 Sept 14, 2002 This was one of the best shows I’ve been to. About 17 punk bands playing all day and night in San Bernadino; there are a hell of a lot of Nazi skin heads in San Bernadino. I went with Craig, Terry and Kenny. Got pepper sprayed by riot police. Kenny did too. Good times.

Bad Religion @ House of Blues Hollywood I took my niece Jamie to her first show. Good times had by all.

Texas Terri and the Stiff Ones “Eat Shit” From one of the last times I saw Texas Terri. 2nd album good but not great.

RHPS with Lips “Masters Affair” 1990 I was kinda dating Ellen Plotkin at the time and she got us tickets. The entire movie cast was there–I got to meet Barry Bostwick and Tim Curry. I had a great time even though I was mostly over Rocky by then.


Well there you go folks. That’s the history of the shirts I’ve been cutting and sewing back together again.

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Posted by on May 25, 2010 in ongoing project


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I Have A New Idea!

Okay so it’s been a few weeks and I’ve put the quilt aside because… I don’t have a real excuse so you can go ahead and use one of the many we all do.  Truth be told, I got overwhelmed and stopped. HOWEVER, I am thinking about how to add a bit of personality to it without “ruining” the shirts. I was told of a site that takes images you send them and prints it onto fabric. YEA, I know, if you can think of it, it’s on the internet-even a blog about a quilt that’s getting nowhere near done.

Since Paul keeps just about everything he has ever owned, experienced, seen, thought about, etc… it occurred to me that he MUST have his concert tickets and YES!  It’s true folks!  The man has most , if not all,  of the concert tickets from all the shows he’s been to. I guess it’s to match the t-shirts? I’m sure this is more common than I can imagine but remember that I throw away my movie ticket even before I walk into the theater so you can see how this is confusing to me.  So anyway back to what I was thinking about the quilt. My thought is that I scan the tickets and find the site to have time print the images onto fabric. Then I can cut them out and accent the finished product with the tickets to give it more of what I visualized. But then I need to put the thing together, which realistically, can be done in one afternoon if I just pull it out and work on it.

Oh btw, I asked Paul to give me a brief history/memory of each of the shirts I’m putting on the quilt. I gave him the project to do a week ago. I need to ask him if he has that for me. I’m not sure what I’ll use it for but I’m sure it fits in all of this somewhere.

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Posted by on May 22, 2010 in ongoing project


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the quilt

I heard “I feel a great disturbance in the Force” to which I thought, “your lack of faith disturbs me”.

After the moment of dork-ism, I realized that I am finally cutting up Paul’s favorite old t-shirts to finally make his quilt. He had given them to me because after 20+ of having some of them and having worn them out, it was time to retire them. They are all concert shirts going back to the first one he bought in 1986. He gave the shirts back in  December (if not earlier) to use in a quilt. I kept putting is aside because he REALLY loves these shirts-and they are not replaceable. More than that I know their history to him go through his teen years and all of his adult life.

Just remember Houry, do or do not, there is no try!

I thought about what I wanted to do for this project. I wanted it to be something that he could use without concern about wear and tear but I also wanted it to be a reflection of my understanding of how important I know it is to him to have these shirts even in a form he never thought they would be.  A QUILT. I know that no matter how creative or artistic you may be, quilts are never sexy or cool. I know that! I got into it to get rid of fabrics I had somehow thought would be cool to have and since then (two years ago) I haven’t gotten myself to stop making blanket of different sizes that we don’t use much. That’s another story all together. But here is where I am with it now.

My masterpiece idea for this quilt was to use the shirts as a tool to memorialize the essence of the punk movement but it was shot down.

It was to have the shirts overlapping each other appliqued onto a fabric (that looked like the walls of a dive bar with a corner raised to be a stage and a bathroom you only walk into because you don’t know where you are) and then sloppily hand stitched to give the feel of it being sewed on the back of a jacket in the back of a van on the way to the show. And on some of the larger images, to put safety pins through them (glued to keep them shut). To also fill in some empty spots, I would have taken some of the photos of him at that time period and copies of ticket stubs and have them transferred to fabric to add as memories. The binding would be made of one of my old flight jacket I was willing to sacrifice for the art of quilt. That was my thought anyway.

He told me he didn’t want to the movement to be memorialized just the t-shirts. He wants them in a line facing the same way and was surprised that I would have cut them different sizes. I don’t know. I never saw being an anarchist as someone who likes things to be in order. What is that?

Anyway, it’s been a bit stressful to do it but we are both laughing about the different ways we go about this. I’m taking pictures of it as I go to let him be part of the process of putting them in the order he wants and the size that works best for him.

So far these are the two images I’m working with.

So here I am now. I wanted to keep a journal of sort on the process and progress of this project. I’m not sure exactly why it’s important to me but I have a feeling this is going to be bigger than the two of u.


Posted by on April 24, 2010 in ongoing project


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