I learned the basics of quilling years ago but never advanced to varsity level projects and rarely found the inspiration to pull my supplies out of hiding. Fortunately, Craftster is blessed with members like littlecircles
who are both incredible quilling artisans and all the inspiration I need to practice my own skills.
I don't claim to be an expert quilling artist, frankly, I'm not good at all!! But I am excited about this craft and wanted to share my very basic knowledge.
Quilling is an ancient craft (also known as paper filigree) that's done by wrapping paper strips around a quill to form a coil. These coils are then arranged to create a design! It only requires a few supplies but a couple of them are specialized and a bit trickier to find.
- Paper strips
- Foundation for your art (I use card stock)
- Pin or toothpick for glue dotting (optional)
The quill is a small round tool with a forked point at the end. I don't often see these available for purchase in craft stores but you can find them online without any trouble.
To begin a coil, place the end of a paper strip between the two prongs of the quill. Try to get it at the very end to avoid having a bend in the center of your coil.
Next, you twist, twist, twist the paper strip around the quill! Do your best to keep the paper lined up with each twist. This will give you a nice level coil. Avoid the temptation to pull everything really tight. The tension should be snug but somewhat relaxed.
You can form tight coils by gluing without releasing the paper from the quill. This will give you a solid circle. Or you can release the coil and let it spring a bit! They can be tightened or loosened to fit whatever design you're working on.
When you're happy with the spring, use a toothpick or pin to place a teeny dot of glue on the end of the strip to secure it to the coil.
Here is a looser version of a coil. Use longer strips of paper to make bigger coils and shorter strips for smaller ones!
The coils can be pinched into all kinds of different shapes! The simplest is a tear drop but you can do heart shapes, 'S' shapes, even squares if you pinch right!
Once you've twisted the night away and have the coils you need, arrange them into your design and attach them to whatever foundation you've selected. Use your glue sparingly when attaching your coils, otherwise it can look sloppy.
I made a super simple flower to adorn a spring gift tag that I'll be using on a flower bouquet.
Be sure to visit the projects of Craftster's varsity level quilling players for better inspiration
If anyone has other tips and tricks for quilling, please let me know. I still have a lot to learn but I hope these basic instructions are helpful!