Quilling is one of the most talked-about craft techniques out there, yet so many people can’t get their head around how to transform humble strips of coloured paper into brilliant papercraft designs. It’s our job at Crafts Beautiful to inform you, and that’s exactly why we’ve pooled together a variety of step-by-steps by our resident quiller, Liz Moad, to introduce you to this fabulous technique.
1 Husking Quilling
Husking quilling is created by arranging pins into a foam board in the pattern desired, then winding the paper strip around the pins to form the desired shape. Here, the husking shapes are grouped to become snowflakes. For extra sparkle, use silver-edged papers so that the snowflakes shimmer when they catch the light.
1 Lay the template onto a foam pad, then push pins into the dots. Wrap a quilling strip around pins one and two to make a loop secured with glue. Follow the pins in sequence.
2 Remove the pins. Trim excess paper, then make five more. Glue one shape to the centre of a white card circle mounted on blue.
3 Continue attaching the shapes to the circle, ensuring the husking shapes form the six points of a snowflake.
4 Make coils using 10cm lengths of quilling paper. Pinch to teardrops and fix inside each husking shape. Glue a stick to the reverse of the circle.
2 Christmas Trees
What’s Christmas without a fir festooned with flickering lights and bright baubles? We simply couldn’t imagine! These firm Nordic favourites are a seasonal staple and a surefire way to invite the festive spirit into your home. Available in a range of colours and types, why not have a go at the quilled variety and create a selection of magnificent makes with a roll, pinch and twist?
1 Quill a loose coil from two strips of green and fix to a triangular panel of white card.
2 Continue adding coils of various sizes to complete the tree shape. Opt for smaller coils at the top and larger ones towards the bottom.
3 Using short lengths of red paper strips, quill tight coils and nestle between the branches.
4 Create a triangle blank with three faces from green card and adhere the white triangle to one side.
3 Filigree Snowflakes
Snowflakes are an exciting reminder that Christmas is on its way, each and every one individual in their formation, and quilling is the perfect technique to replicate their intricate structures. Your designs can be as simple or complex as you wish, making this project ideal for both newbies and pros. Plus, we’ve infused the traditional reds and greens with hints of pink for a bright and contemporary festive look.
1 Coil a 20cm length of red paper to form a loose closed coil and pinch both ends to create a leaf shape. Use a quilling board to make more coils in the same size.
2 Fix 10cm strips of green to the outer edges of the red leaves and tightly wrap before sticking the end in place.
3 Make a tight coil, glue to a pink disc, then fix the red and green coils around. Take 20cm of green, coil and pinch into a teardrop. Make five more.
4 Create rings from red and layer onto the pink circle. Make tight coils from pink and fix to the ends of the green shapes. Quill red and pink coils, then attach.
4 Easy Nautical Accents
Inspired by good ol’ trips to the beach, give your summer quilling a maritime makeover and craft a collection of designs from greetings to gift tags. For those who are new to quilling, the bunting is the perfect project to get you started as the coiled shapes can be easily pinched into triangles. Once you’ve mastered the basic techniques, move on to more intricate shapes such as seagulls and anchors for a complete coastal touch.
1 With a quilling tool, coil a 40cm long strip of pink and repeat using various shades of pink. Use a quilling board for identically sized shapes.
2 Pinch the coiled shapes into triangles using your fingers. Apply glue to the pennants and attach them to turquoise card above a row of beach huts.
3 Fix a length of 3mm wide pink paper along the top. Make open coils at the end of each strip. If you prefer flatter quilled shapes, use 2mm wide quilling strips.
4 Pinch a 40cm pink loose coil. Make another for the middle. Add two pinched crescent shapes for the tips from 10cm lengths. Make a coil for the top and finish with a circle.
5 Bold Bouquets
A surefire way to make a statement and uplift your loved one’s spirits, take your quilling skills to the next level and try your hand at these whimsical blooms. Liz Moad’s technicolour creations are a delight to both craft and gift. Each petal is simply made from three pinched coils wrapped together to form a tight single shape and adhered to create a bloomin’ spectacular display, perfect for any occasion.
1 Coil a 40cm length of 3mm wide red paper. Release the shape slightly to create a loose closed coil and adhere. Pinch each end into an eye shape. Repeat to make 15 pinched shapes.
2 Glue three coils together and wrap red paper around the outer edge. Repeat two or three times and tear off any excess to neaten. Make four or five petals per flower.
3 Adhere the petal shapes together. Make a tight coil from pink paper for the centre of the flower. Attach two lengths of red paper, then make a tight coil and glue to a circle of yellow card.
4 Stick the red flower to the yellow card so that the bloom is raised. Using a needle tool, make open coils from various colours and attach around the flower. Mount onto a circle and finish with ribbon.
6 Cheeky Gnomes
Seeing a gnome or two brings a sense of fun to a garden and here we play around with paper quilling to create these adorable miniatures. To make the shape easier to handle, a polystyrene egg shape is used as a base for the quilling to be glued to. This makes the figures more robust and sturdy. Whilst these gnomes will take a little time to create, the results are really worth it and are guaranteed to bring happiness to everyone who stumbles across them!
1 Glue 12 red paper lengths, 3mm wide, end to end. Depending on the size of the egg used, more or fewer lengths may be needed. Coil the long length into one tight coil, glue the end in place and remove the quilling tool.
2 Carefully press the centre of the coil to create a dome shape. Push around a polystyrene egg base and glue in place. Repeat with ten white paper lengths for the top, so that the white paper meets the red.
3 Colour the white paper in one section with blush-coloured felt pen. Use black pen for eyes and pink for rosy cheeks. Make a nose from a 5cm length of paper, 1mm wide, coiled tightly, then colour with the blush pen.
4 Create two feet using two 30cm lengths of red paper coiled and pinched to teardrop shapes. Make arms, hands and hair. For the hat, coil 12 lengths of blue paper, 5mm wide, tightly, then push into a pointed shape.
7 Fringed Flowers
Frilly flowers are a staple of the quilling repertoire, mainly because they are so easy to make and produce such fabulous results! By cutting strips of paper to make a fringe, then coiling tightly with a quilling tool, these pretty flowers can be made in any size or colour you desire. Use them to decorate cards and tags, or embellish larger items such as gift bags and decorations. Paper strips can be fringed by hand or by using a fringing tool, and some quillers use scissors made for shredding paper. The wonder of these blooms is that they always provide the wow-factor!
1 Place orange paper, 2cm x 29cm, onto scrap paper to avoid any stains. Colour one long edge with orange pen, 5mm from the edge.
2 Cut the strip of paper every 1mm, leaving an uncut margin. Glue a 20cm length of white 3mm wide paper to the uncut margin at one end of the orange.
3 Coil the white narrow paper all the way to the end of the orange. Remove the tool and glue the end of the paper, keeping the coil tight. Spread the fringe out.
4 Print or write ‘Just a note’ onto green card and attach to a white blank. Make two more orange flowers in different sizes and glue to the card.
8 Delicate Butterflies
Butterflies have enduring appeal due to the fabulous colours of their wings, which are some of the most striking in nature. Dancing and fluttering around flowers, delicate butterflies float and shimmer in front of us and can’t help but inspire our crafting! With paper quilling, we can let our imagination loose on colour combinations and designs, and here Liz Moad has demonstrated how soft shades can be used for thank you or Mother’s Day cards. A butterfly design can be side-on with just the top and bottom wing parts shown or a full butterfly with the two wings made of four parts.
1 Cut a 15cm length of purple quilling paper and join to 15cm of mauve, end to end, to create one 30cm strip. Ensure the join of the two papers is neat and smooth.
2 Insert the purple end into a quilling tool, then coil the whole length to the end of mauve. Make a loose closed coil and glue the end in place. Pinch to create a teardrop shape, then make two more. Make three coils from blue paper.
3 Stick seven 15cm lengths of light blue and turquoise end to end, then make coils. Glue the purple teardrops and the coils around, adding purple and mauve. Secure the blue shapes. For the lower wing, create six coils. Form a tight coil with 15cm purple and mauve. Stick together and fill around with five coils.
4 Take one section of the wing and stick paper to the edges of all the coiled shapes, then wrap the whole shape with the paper and glue. Repeat for the lower wing. For the body, use a 40cm length of purple made into a loose closed coil and pinched.
9 Spring Brights
To celebrate spring, a few brightly coloured quilled flowers will point us in the right direction. Here, an unusual technique is used to make loops with paper to create petals and leaves. A regular hair comb with large prongs is all that’s needed to wrap the lengths of paper in and out to form looped shapes. It is then slid off the comb and folded over, more paper is attached and voilà, a petal is made! The size depends on how many times the paper is wrapped around and the type of comb used. These pretty petals look fabulous on their own, but can also have traditional quilled shapes added to them for extra dimension.
1 Wrap pink paper around the two centre prongs of a hair comb to create a loop, then glue the end in place. Take the loose end and thread under a prong next to the centre, bring up and over to the other side. Repeat twice, taking the paper under, up and over, then glue the end.
2 Slide the paper shape off the comb. Bend and fold in half with the loops innermost, then wrap with pink paper to hold the shape. The lengths needed will vary according to the size of comb. Repeat step 1 to make four more.
3 With orange paper, 20cm long, use the quilling tool to make a loose open coil. Make four more, using a quilling board if you wish to ensure they are the same size. Glue the five pink looped shapes onto white card, with the folded part at the centre of the flower.
4 Pinch the orange coils at both ends and insert into the centre of the pink shapes in between the line of loops. Make a coil from turquoise, 15cm long, and attach to the centre of the flower. Add a green stalk and make a leaf in the same way as a petal with turquoise and green paper.