{week 1} paper quilling

This week I’m exploring the art of paper quilling.

Quilling has its origins as far back as the Renaissance – nuns and monks used the technique of rolling thin strips of paper (usually remnants gilding the edges of books) to decorate book covers. It’s a massively popular art form today – commonly used for cards but there are also creative and beautiful framed examples such as this stunning flower design.

It requires very few tools – just paper, glue and a quilling tool (some quillers use their fingers alone to make the coiled paper) – so it’s great if you don’t have much space to store craft supplies.

Ann Martin’s Quilling 101 on craftzine is a great resource if you want to give quilling a try – the two shapes you need for my project are coils and teardrops.

Here’s the sketch for my design – it’s a simple birthday card for my father-in-law’s birthday. I always struggle with cards for men so I think I’ll use this design, or something similar, again.


I chose a simple colour palette of red, blue and yellow. I used teardrop shapes for the candle flames, short strips of paper for the candles & the edges of the cake, and coils to fill in the cake shape.

Quilled birthday card

I definitely see more quilling in my future – if you want to have a go, here are some suppliers (UK) I’ve found:

and more paper and even more paper. Or you could use any paper you already have and cut it into thin strips.
Glue – I used mod podge but any clear-drying paper glue will be fine.

Let me know in the comments if you have a go at quilling or know of more resources about this simple but beautiful craft.


3 Responses to “{week 1} paper quilling”

  1. 1 Talia June 23, 2010 at 5:49 am

    I remember doing quilling when I was in Primary School. So much fun!! I think I might have to have another go. It would be great for various cards!

  1. 1 {week 1} potato printing « 52 crafts in 52 weeks Trackback on July 25, 2011 at 1:24 pm

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