A little about ME and my BLOG…

Welcome to my corner of the web!

I am a fiber artist.  I work with fabric and fiber and many other materials (paint, ink, metal, beads, found objects…) using various collage and sewing techniques – quilting, embellishing and sewing by machine and by hand.  I am particularly fond of the torn and frayed edge.  Please visit my website to see examples of my work and my exhibition resume.   http://deborahbein.com (in progress, at this writing…)

I’ll use my blog to define some of my more profound moments and thoughts, to share some good ideas with my peers, to engage in a bit of shame-less self-promotion, and who knows what else…but I promise, it will all be about ART, not the other parts of my life!  You will find that I like using CAPITAL LETTERs a LOT, I’m a NEOLOGIST (look it up!), and I love ellipses, too…..and oh, please forgive the occasional ‘haha.’

I’ve been a sewist since I was age 14 when the birthday girl got her wish, a brand new Singer 404 sewing machine! A lot of years passed making clothing and doing home dec projects until I discovered quilting around 1998.  I followed the traditional quilt making path, always admiring Art Quilts, but not feeling the self-confidence to MAKE ART of my own. When I embarked on a Postcard Exchange in late 2005, sparks started to fly in my brain and my sewing room!

The PROCESS had begun and there was no turning back! I began to give myself PERMISSION to PLAY!  I threw caution to the wind, shooed that pesky monkey from my shoulder, shushed those critical voices whispering in my ear….and, quite simply, just DID stuff!  Talk about POWERFUL!  Things began to happen – creativity, self-actualization, confidence, and accomplishment!  My sewing room morphed into a STUDIO!  I joined SAQA (Studio Art Quilt Associates).  Most importantly, I realized that the PROCESS is EVERYTHING, the key to life itself…exhilarating, full of wonder and amazement!

Just trying to make ART and SENSE,

Debbie Bein

A lot of catching up to do……

Hello out there in blogland!  I’m finally emerging from my year-long cocoon imposed by grief, mourning, renewal and reinvention.  I’m relieved and happy to report that I’ve survived the sudden and heartbreaking loss of my dear partner/housemate/friend/lover last February (2013) and am forging a “Life After Gil” for myself.  I am forever indebted to the crew of friends and family – far and wide, old and new – who have unfailingly offered their support and helpful advice, not to mention their patience and loving care to me as I slogged through new terrain. 

During mourning and grief and trying to fill the huge vacuum left in my home, as well as endless hours in every day that were formerly taken up by a gratifying and loving relationship – some of the best times of my life, certainly the most contented – I found working in the studio to be my release and my my savior.

I worked unintentionally, talking to myself, talking to Gil, talking to the universe and trying to listen to its reply.  I returned to the fiber and quilting exercises that have always provided a sense of personal satisfaction – cutting, piecing, stitching, quilting.  I was not in a colorful mood.  I began to piece together backgrounds composed of various natural cotton cloth:  gauze, muslin, canvas, Osnaburg, anything off white or natural I found in my stash.  It came together nicely.  I quilted it with natural (ecru) size 12 cotton thread, straight stitch echo quilting done by free motion – lots of it and in a somewhat random textural technique.  By the time that was finished, I had decided I needed to devise something out of black Kona cotton, which I fused and cut into the long skinny strips that allowed me to arrange them on the neutral quilted background.  Arches reminiscent of oriental temples emerged.  I named the piece ‘PASSAGES’ and framed it with quilted black on two sides.  Here is the result.

I quite liked this new style I’d invented for myself which reminded me of Chinese brush work or calligraphy.  

This one is named, aptly, COMING AROUND.

Coincidentally, after these pieces were completed, a Chinese Calligraphy class was offered in my area and I have begun to paint with brushes and sumo ink on rice paper.  Pure ecstasy!  I will be posting more about this in the future. and I will be showing more work and talking about the artist community I’ve discovered in my own backyard and how it has changed me and expanded my artistic horizons   AND, I have more new work to unveil!

Thanks for looking!  Your comments always noted and appreciated.

Accidental Artist – article in Machine Quilting Unlimited magazine


I was invited to be the featured artist in the current (January/February 2013) issue of Machine Quilting Unlimited magazine.  They did a FABULOUS almost six page spread of  retrospective photos of my work and autobiographical text about how I became an art quilter quite by ‘accident.’  The staff at MQU was great to work with, couldn’t have had a better introduction to the world of publishing.  I wish them good luck with their new intriguing endeavor in the world of quilt publishing, Modern Quilts Unlimited magazine.

FINALLY! my new WEBSITE! and ETSY, too!

I’ve done it!  Well, not alone and I’m not sure I should be so proud as this has been in the works for WAY too long (as in years!).  With the help of TALENTED, PATIENT and KIND good friend DEIRDRE ABBOTTS, my new website is UP!  www.deborahbein.com

Take a look and then leave your comments back here on my blog.  Or email me from there on the CONNECT page.  Possibilities are endless….

And, as if that isn’t enough new news from me, I’ve also just opened a SHOP on ETSY!  ArtZyQuiltZy  is the name of my shop.  I’ve made some really neat QUILTED earrings, some with beads, some not…yes, REALLY TINY REAL QUILTS for your ears!  I’ve also made some affordable, ready to hang COLLAGE works, too.

So, please take a look at my new presence on the web….TWO of them!