Banner: Porcelain Grace, Meryl Ruth, Fine Art





Felted Owl Quilt, A Fiber Art Work.

  • This is a third iteration in my owl series, following its predecessors, Night Owl and Screech Owl. Although those two earlier quilts were satisfying in their own right, I didn't feel they quite captured the owl's magnificent plumage using the quilting method alone. This motivated me to venture once more into depiction of this owl species using the more difficult and time consuming felting technique. The new piece took over a year to produce, although I was not working exclusively on it during this time.
  • Similar to the prior owl-themed works, this one is based on an original photograph I took of a wild screech owl I encountered on a trip to visit my daughter in Florida.
  • The main difference from the other two quilts is that, after the silk-screen printing process, I use a felting technique to create texture, color, variation, value, interest and artistry. The piece is felted by piercing tiny segments of wool with a barbed needle to pull strands of the wool into the layer beneath. This creates a type of three-dimensional fiber work that I had never made before.
  • The owl photograph is first transferred to a large cotton fabric panel by a 12-color silk-screen separation process.
  • Felting is done to enhance the image with different colors of wool. Felting gives rise to interesting surface effects. I use the needle felting method because I could manipulate the wool very precisely and ensure exacting detail. The alternative wet method is a bit more spontaneous and, although quite beautiful, would not provide the detail that I felt I needed and wanted in order to achieve the desired effect.
  • After the felting is complete, I use the same series of quilting methods as I had in other quilts.
  • Black cloth borders are sewn to the completed felted panel.
  • Cotton batting is sandwiched between the embellished front felted panel and a black cloth backing panel. The layers are quilted together by machine stitching.
  • Thread painting is applied to reenforce the Merino wool.
  • The work is framed behind glass to protect and preserve its delicate textured surface.
  • Date: 2018.
  • Size: 21.0" x 28.0", framed.
  • Available for purchase. Price: $1500.





Enlarged view.


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Close-up views of thread painting details.


  • Shown here are close-up views of thread painting details of the multicolored stitching used to enhance the previously silk-screened and felted image.

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Completed work before framing.


  • An original photograph of an owl is silk-screened onto a large panel of white cotton fabric.
  • The panel is felted with layers of Merino wool additions in several colors to give the work three-dimentionality and complex surface texture.
  • When the felting is finished, black cotton borders are added by sewing.
  • The composite unit serves as the front face of the quilt made up of three layers: this panel, a layer of cotton batting and a black back panel.
  • The three layers are quilted by stitching together by sewing machine.
  • The image shown here is the completed work before it is framed.
  • Framing behind glass is done to protect the delicate surface.



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