Archive for the 'Quilling Inspiration' Category

Mar 03 2012

Tea Time Quilling Card

tea time quilling cardA cup of tea is an invitation to put your feet up and relax for a moment, or catch up with the latest news as you chat with a friend. Is it any wonder that teacups are such a popular motif in stamping and paper crafting?


When I first started thinking about this project, I envisioned my card having a decidedly Victorian feel. I had some nice off-white lace that I wanted to use and started looking through my papers to see what I might have to go with it. I was quite surprised to find that while I seem to be drawn to that style, it wasn’t reflected in my current paper stash and I didn’t have anything that would work.


tea time quilling card insideThat actually turned out to be a good thing. I am still in a “use what I already have” mood, which made me look at my current papers in a new way. I found a large scrap of striped print paper that reminded me of mid-century modern wallpaper and the look of my card quickly jumped a century from 1850 to 1950 and provided an opportunity to try some new quilling techniques.


I want to give Melisa Waldorf of Paperlicious Designs credit for the teacup template I used as the pattern to cut out my own blue teacup. I resized it a bit since I needed it smaller, but kept the rim wide enough to cover the packaged tea bag.  I cut a slit through the front of the card and slipped in the teabag.  It is held in place with a glue dot.


Most of the quilling designs are made from “solid rings” (the official North American Quilling Guild name for the ring coils) created by wrapping the quilling paper around a bamboo skewer, dowel, or tool handle.


behive quilling flowerI also used these rings to make the outline of the flower petals which I filled in using the Beehive technique Susan of Susan Quilling Cards introduced us to last December.  Pritesh of Quilling Me Softly was kind enough to make a video of this technique.


I enjoy a nice hot cup of tea, especially on a cold evening, and this card with the enclosed teabag will let me share that enjoyment with a friend.


Quilling Tip

If tea isn’t your “bag” (I know, that was bad … LOL!), this card idea can be easily adapted to hold a packet of instant coffee or cocoa.  Or try changing the tea cup to a soup bowl and add a packet of instant chicken soup for a thoughtful Get Well card for a sick friend.


8 responses so far

Feb 19 2012

Bridal Shower Quilling Card

My niece is getting married this June and I attended her bridal shower yesterday.  I wanted to create a special card for the occasion and using the colors from the invitation, I designed this one.

quilled bridal shower card


quilled bridal shower card side view


bridal shower card sentiment


Deciding on the actual quilling is usually not a problem; however, it can take me quite awhile to come up with the actual card layout.  If you suffer from this design malady too, then a card sketch may be just what the doctor ordered.


For those unfamiliar with sketches, they are drawings of cards with the various paper pieces and embellishment placements already decided.  I belong to a Yahoo! Group called The Scrapbook Lounge.  The moderator (hi, Diana) is starting up a monthly sketch challenge and I decided to use it for the layout of the shower card.


Scrapbook Lounge card sketch


With sketches there are no rules and you can certainly move pieces around to fit your mood or the supplies you have on hand.  I find them to be a wonderful design tool since the work is already done for you.  And since sketches are a simple black and white, it is much easier to imagine your own colors and papers in the layout, rather than seeing a finished card and then trying to imagine it made from completely different supplies.


You can find sketches quite easily.  A quick Google search will turn up quite a few.  You can also find them in the back of magazines such as Card Maker, and there are some excellent professionally done sketch books you can purchase.  


There are also quite a few blogs that sponsor sketch challenges (again, do a Google search).  Participating in sketch challenges is an excellent way to practice your card making skills and show others the beauty of quilling.


5 responses so far

Feb 01 2012

Quilled Mini Valentine’s Day Cards

Feeling sweet, sexy, or playfully punny?  Then one of these quilled Valentine’s Day cards is right for you.

3 quilled Valentine cards

Archiver’s has been advertising a card workshop making Itty Bitty Valentines that are 3-in x 3-in.  They looked so cute I decided to challenge myself to design three Itty Bitty Valentines of my own.  I only had two rules:  (1) my cards needed to be the same 3-in x 3-in size and (2) I couldn’t purchase any new supplies – I had to use what was already in my stash.  


Pretty in Pink

quilled Valentine card with roseWho says a Valentine has to be red?  For this sweet card I layered three strips of pink card stock (alternating light and dark) on the bottom and rounded the corners with a decorative punch.  I added a quilled long-stem pink rose with moss green leaves.  For the sentiment, I stamped “My heart is yours” in black ink and added a little pink bow.  The rose is a rolled spiral made from a circle punched from card stock.  To finish the card I edged it with pink chalk.


A Berry Delightful Valentine

quilled Valentine berryThis card was inspired by the red and tan checked paper which has been in my stash bin for quite some time.  It is from a sack I saved from a purchase made in Savannah.  It reminded me of a country picnic which lead me to the “I love you BERRY much!” theme.  I used my computer to print the sentiment onto the tan cardstock, trimmed it to 2.75-in square and attached it to the front of my red card.  I cut a piece of the sack with pinking shears and glued it near the top-left of the card.  I punched two small holes and added little red heart brads (bought awhile ago with no particular project in mind, but they were cute and on sale – lol!).  Next, I glued on a red heart-shaped strawberry and white strawberry blossom.  I tied a little piece of jute cord around the top of the card to finish it off.


Hot Lips

quilled Valentine kissThis card is my favorite.  I had the thought of quilling a pair of lips and as I pondered how I would use that embellishment on a card, I remembered the famous Bogie & Bacall movie quote, “You know how to whistle, don’t you?”  A quick internet search turned up the entire quote and I knew that this would be the card I would give to my husband — Steve.


I used my computer to print the text and a Spellbinder’s die set to cut out the layers for both the front and inside of the card.  I glued two little flat pearls to the front and added the lips.  He’s going to love it.


There’s only one downside to taking on a challenge like this — what do I do with all of the ideas still floating around in my head that I didn’t create?

9 responses so far

Sep 08 2011

Cute as a Button Quilling Card

We were blessed with our fourth grandchild, Daniel John Morgan, on July 21st, so to say that I have babies on the brain is an understatement.  When I ran across a free “cute as a button” graphic on the Papercraft Inspirations website, I was inspired to make a card featuring quilled buttons — for a baby boy of course!

Cute as a Button Quilling Card

If you haven’t visited the Papercraft Inspirations site, you are in for a real treat.  This is the online site for the printed magazine.  Besides all of the ideas provided by a team of extremely creative designers, you’ll find free templates, downloads, and papers you can print off to use with your own creations.


If you would like to make your own “Cute as a Button” card, you’ll find the free button card back graphic (designed by Jo Kill) in the free download section.

2 responses so far

Aug 23 2010

Quilled Acorn Bookmark

quilled-acorn-bookmarkA while ago, I saw a window tag at the scrapbook store that held confetti.  The tag was made from two pieces of card stock with a clear plastic window sandwiched in between.  As I examined the piece, I wondered if it would work with quilling and filed the idea away in my idea box.
We have a dog, Trixie, who is part golden retriever, part husky, (and who knows what else) that my husband brought home from the pound.  She loves the treats I purchase that come in a plastic bag.  This bag is heavy duty, clear, and pliable.  In other words …. perfect for crafting … so into my inspiration bin it went. 
While looking through my inspiration bin I ran across the plastic bag, remembered the window tag, and I knew it was time to give the idea a try.
First, I created a bookmark template with a window and printed two (front and back).  Then, I cut two pieces of plastic (from the recycled plastic bag) larger than the window.  I quilled a little acorn and slid it between the plastic sheets.  I then placed this between the front and back pieces of the bookmark, tacking the two together at the top and bottom away from the stitching area.  Next, I stitched around the edges to hold it all in place.  Finally, a tassel on the bottom completed the bookmark.
You’ll find the free quilling pattern for the acorn, along with the bookmark template and complete instructions and photos for creating the bookmark, in the next newsletter.  So if you haven’t already subscribed to “The Art of Quilling News” be sure to sign up today.  (You’ll find the enrollment form in the upper right-hand corner.)
(Oh, and please excuse the sewing around the window.  I was almost done when Trixie decided that she needed my attention and bumped my arm.)

2 responses so far

Aug 01 2010

Back to School Quilling

For those of you wanting to add quilling to your scrapbook pages, this sample layout featuring my handsome grandson, Jeffrey, makes the grade.  Made for an 8″x8″ album, the primary colors, quilled pencil, and A-B-C charms definitely give it an elementary school feel.
The quilled pencil is 6-3/4 inches long from eraser to tip.  4-inch strips of 1/8″ paper were used for the coils, but this pattern could easily be resized to work with your own layout.
Square coils made from a deep pink quilling paper create the eraser.  A strip of the same pink is wrapped around the square coils to give it a more solid appearance.  The pencil body is made from golden yellow marquise coils.  Strips of matching yellow paper are glued to both the top and bottom sides of the pencil to outline the pencil body.  Light beige marquise coils are used for the sharpened tip of the pencil while a black pinched heart is used for the lead.  A strip of shiny aluminum tape is adhered on the top and sides of the pencil between the pink eraser and pencil body.
To incorporate the quilled pencil into the page title, I printed “First Day of School” on some matching golden yellow card stock, cut it out, and glued it on top of the quilling.
I created my own A-B-C charms from 22 gauge wire, accenting each letter with quilled beads made from tight coils.
Apples, an old fashioned school house, a student desk, scissors, and crayons, are but a few of the many quilled embellishments you could create to dress up your back-to-school scrapbook pages.

6 responses so far

Jun 06 2010

Quilled Puzzle Piece Magnet

quilled-cherries-puzzle-magnetI really appreciate all of the feedback I receive from my newsletter subscribers and blog readers.   One request that I hear quite often is for more quilling projects made from recycled materials, which is great because I enjoy creating them!
Several weeks ago, I stopped by a local thrift store and found a handmade cookbook from 1971.  You know the kind — the recipes were all typed with a real typewriter then the pages were mimeographed and bound with a metal prong file clip into a book for the club members.  It was awesome and all for only $0.50.  What a bargain.
Along with the retro cookbook, I have had an old children’s puzzle in my supply stash for quite awhile (ever since the all important “last piece” went missing).   When I looked in my inspiration bin and saw the cookbook and puzzle pieces, I knew I had the ingredients to cook up this week’s project — a quilled kitchen magnet.
Since your materials will differ (we are trying to use what we have, remember), I offer these general instructions as a guide for making your own Quilled Puzzle Piece Magnet.
You will need
Chipboard puzzle piece
Background paper (scrapbook paper, old wallpaper, etc.)
Recipe (from old book, newspaper, magazine, etc.)
Quilling paper, 1/8″ wide
Basic quilling tools (discussed earlier)
Spray adhesive
Sandpaper or emery board
Permanent fine-line marker, black
Distress ink (I used Tim Holtz’s Tea Dye)
Cotton swab
Spray acrylic sealer (optional)
General instructions
  1. Turn your puzzle piece so that the plain chipboard side is facing up (this will be the front of your magnet) and place it onto your background paper (right side of paper facing up), trace around the puzzle piece and cut out.  Spray the front of the puzzle piece and the back side of the cut-out background paper with spray adhesive and adhere the two together. 
  2. Tear the recipe to fit the puzzle piece and glue in place.  Clean up the edges of the puzzle piece by sanding them with the sand paper or emery board.
  3. Dab the cotton swab on the ink pad and highlight the edges of the puzzle piece and torn edges of the recipe.  Using the permanent marker, make stitch marks around the edges of the puzzle piece. 
  4. You are now ready to add the quilling.  Here is where you can get creative matching the quilling to your chosen recipe.  Since the one I selected was “Cherries in the Snow,” I added ripe red cherries with green leaves.  This design would also work well with a cherry pie or tart recipe. 
  5. Spray the puzzle piece with an acrylic sealer (optional), glue a magnet to the back, and you’re done.
Quilling Tip
If you want THE gift for a special holiday that is sure to touch the recipient’s heart, make a copy of a handwritten recipe from a cherished family member and use it on the magnet, matching your quilling to the recipe.  If your family is anything like mine, be ready for a big hug and have an extra tissue handy.

8 responses so far

May 15 2010

Fabric “Paper” Makes Fun Background for Quilling

fabricBack in the 1980s, it was all the rage to stiffen strips of large-print floral fabrics (usually mauve) into bows to dress up wicker baskets.  While that decorating look has come and gone, it’s still fun to stiffen fabric, especially if you are a crafter who likes to get her hands a little messy once in a while.   Stiffened fabric has a wonderful paper-like quality making it an interesting textured background for your quilling projects.  The key is to keep it flat as it dries.  The stiffened fabric can be easily trimmed to size using your paper cutter and simple folds are possible.
To create stiffened fabric you will need: 
  • fabric (I have found that thin cottons or cotton blends work best)
  • fabric stiffener (I used Stiffy by Plaid Enterprises, but there are several on the market)
  • foam brush
  • throw-away plate or container to hold the fabric stiffener
  • heavy plastic to protect your work surface (I used a transparency sheet and it worked like a charm.  If the plastic is too light weight, like plastic wrap, it will wrinkle under the fabric as you apply the stiffener)
brush-stiffener-onto-fabricNow that you have assembled your supplies, let’s get started.  1.  Cut a piece of fabric (smaller than the plastic) and place it right-side up on your work surface.  2.  Pour some of the stiffener into your container.   3.  Using the foam brush, apply the stiffener to the fabric starting in the center and working your way to the edges, being sure to keep the fabric flat.  You want to make sure that the fabric is totally saturated with the stiffener, but not gloppy.  4.  Pour the excess stiffener back into the bottle, discard the brush and container (or wash them for the next time).
stiffened-fabricThat’s it.  Now just kick back while the stiffener dries.  Depending on how much stiffener you used and how large your piece of fabric is, it might take 30 minutes or longer.  This process can be hurried along with a hairdryer.
If your new fabric paper is a bit wrinkled, I found that it can be ironed flat.  Use an iron setting appropriate for the fabric used (cotton or cotton blend) and do not use steam.  Be sure to protect your ironing board surface and iron by using a dry pressing cloth over and under the dry stiffened fabric (a piece of the cloth you haven’t applied stiffener to works well). 
One word of warning — do not get the stiffened fabric wet.  It will turn limp like, well, fabric.  
quilled-card-with-fabric-paperThe fabric “paper” I made accents this colorful birthday card.   I used a dry adhesive to attach the stiffened fabric to the paper surface of the card.  The small amount of regular glue I used to attach the quilled coils directly onto the stiffened fabric caused no problems at all.  I repeated the circle theme with a silver paper clip bought in a set from the Dollar store.  Small silver half-pearls embellish the upper left-hand corner of the card.
Quilling Tip:  The fun swirly doodle designed fabric was some that I had in my stash, but this would be a great way to recycle fabric from old clothing too worn to give to charity.

4 responses so far

Mar 15 2010

Spring Quilling — Easter Egg

It has been a very cold, wet winter, which is unusual for Georgia.  We have had more snow than I can remember in years and I am so looking forward to spring.  I was surfing the web looking for a poem or saying to go with this post that waxed poetically about trees beginning to bud as the earth starts its cycle of rebirth, or something to that effect, when I ran across this delightful quote and had to chuckle.  I think Mr. Borland has summed up the month of March quite well.
“March is a tomboy with tousled hair, a mischievous smile, mud on her shoes, and a laugh in her voice.”
–  Hal Borland
quilling-blossom-on-painted-eggIn honor of spring, I thought I would show you an egg ornament that I made.  It is a paper maché egg embellished with a quilled peach blossom.  This egg is the size of a hen’s egg, but you could use one larger if you like and adjust your quilling accordingly.  I used the narrow, 1/16″ wide quilling paper since I find it does better for me when I am gluing it to a curved surface. 
To get the egg ready for the quilling, I applied a coat of gesso to seal the paper maché.  Once the egg was dry, I sketched an oval on the egg and painted the inside white and the rest of the egg a soft peachy-pink.  I applied a coat of satin varnish and let it dry.  For the final touch, I outlined the oval with a gold metallic permanent marker.  Since I wanted to hang my egg on a display stand, I glued on a bell cap with a built in ring, however, this egg would look just as cute displayed in a basket.
For this sample, I quilled a peach blossom on a tree branch with other buds and leaves — at least I call it a peach blossom since I live in the peach state, but it could just as easily be an apple or cherry blossom.  I have also embellished these painted eggs with violets, iris, daffodils, and even a cute bunny that I sold before getting a photo (hate it when that happens).  I did give the quilling a thin coat of the varnish for protection.
Eggs make a wonderful spring canvas for quilling, and since the area is small, the quilling goes fairly quickly.  You’ll have a masterpiece to show others in no time.
Tip:  If you are interested in the bell caps, I found them online at under the “findings” section.  They have a really nice selection of jewelry findings at very reasonable prices.  NOTE:  I have no connection with this company and derive no benefit from this recommendation, except for that little thrill you get when you tell a friend about something cool.  🙂 

4 responses so far

Jan 30 2010

Enhance Your Quilling with Blending Chalks

Fig 1

Fig 1

Blending chalks are an excellent choice when you want to add a bit of color to your quilling.  Made by several manufacturers, they come in a wide array of colors from soft pastels to bright jewel tones.  Some even have a bit of shimmer mixed in (Fig. 1).

Chalks are easy to use and, unlike inks, are quite forgiving.  Small sponge applicators (similar to those used for eye shadow) usually come with the chalks.  Replacements can be a bit pricey in the craft stores, so you might want to look into the make-up applicators available at discount or beauty supply stores.  You can also use cotton swabs, cotton balls, and tissues to apply the chalk.
Fig 2

Fig 2

You can apply chalks directly to your finished quills.  This allows you to add color without splicing strips together.  For the leaf (Fig. 2), I applied a darker green to the lower portion of the shaped marquise and yellow to the top with just a touch of red on the tip.  In the photo, a plain leaf is on the left for comparison.

Quilled flowers can be enhanced with chalks as well.  Dark colors of chalk look striking on flowers made with light colored papers while light chalk colors can really make darker flowers pop. 
Fig 3

Fig 3

Yellow was added to the center of this star flower (on the right) giving it a warm glow.  A plain star flower is on the left for comparison (Fig. 3).
My favorite use of chalks is to highlight the background papers used with my quilling.  I love the look of torn paper edges and think they add a nice texture to a finished piece.  Sepia and brown colors will give your background papers a worn, aged look. 
Fig 4

Fig 4

Adding a color that blends or contrasts with your quilling is a great way to add interest and draw your eye into the quilling, just like when you add a mat to a piece of framed art  (Fig. 4).

Don’t limit yourself to just chalking the edges of the quilling background.  When I created this Valentine’s Day card for my husband, I brought the red chalk in from the edges and made it a part of overall design. 
Fig 5

Fig 5

The chalk highlights the subtle texture of the background paper without taking anything away from the true focus of the card — the quilled floral heart wreath (Fig 5).

Give blending chalks a try — I think you’ll find that they can give your quilling an added depth and beauty.

Tip:  Blending chalks are actually quite inexpensive and last a very long time.  They are softer, however, than the sidewalk or blackboard chalks you might have played with as a child and they crumble easily.  Also, I found out the hard way that the individual pieces of chalk are not glued inside their trays and will fall out if dropped, making a mess on your carpet if you are not careful.


If you would like to quill your own Floral Heart Wreath, a 12-page downloadable PDF quilling pattern is available.  Check out the Quilling Patterns section of the blog to learn more.
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