Tag Archive 'paper crafting'

Feb 12 2012

Tutorial – Making a Gift Box for Quilling

In an earlier post, I shared how I package my quilled ornaments in a little handmade gift box for craft shows.  I gave general information and some tips, but have been asked to provide detailed instructions on how they are made.  I created a tutorial in case you would like to know, too. 


Box Bottom

1.  Cut a 5” x 5” square from heavy scrapbook paper or card stock.


2.  Score the box 1” from each side (inside square of box will be 3” x 3”).  Fold sides up at score lines and flatten back down.


3.  Following the score line, cut 1” slits on two opposite sides of the square.

box bottom

4.  To make a nicer box corner, cut a small notch in each corner.

cut corner notch

5.  Fold up the box sides and glue the 1” tabs on the inside.  You could also use double-sided tape or a tape runner, but I found that the glue held the sides together better.

inside box bottom


Box Lid

The construction of the box lid is the same as for the bottom, but you will want to adjust your measurements so that:  (1) the inside square is slightly larger than the bottom so the two box halves fit easily together, and (2) the sides of the lid are shorter than the sides of the bottom to make the box easier to open.


1.  Cut a 4-3/4” x 4-3/4” square from heavy scrapbook paper or card stock.


2.  Score the box 13/16” from each side (inside square of box will be 3-1/8” x 3-1/8”).  Fold sides up at score lines and flatten back down.


3.  Following the score line, cut 13/16” slits on two opposite sides of the square; notch corners.  Fold up the box sides and glue the tabs on the inside. 



quilled ornament in a boxThat’s all there is to it.  Just put your 3” x 3” square of batting into the bottom and you are good to go.  As I mentioned in the previous post, I open the box so that the quilling can be seen and place the whole thing it into a clear sleeve.


The easiest way to make the box a little more special is to use two different coordinating papers for the box lid and bottom (this is what I do). 


If you wanted a really fancy box, you could decorate the lid by:  cutting the box lid square using decorative scissors so that the top had a pretty decorative edge, embossing just the sides while they are still flat before gluing the tabs, gluing decorative ribbon around the sides, making the sides even shorter and gluing a pretty ruffled lace around the edges, adding decorative stitching, etc.  You are only limited by your imagination!


4 responses so far

Jan 21 2012

Quilled Valentine Pomander

Published by under Valentine Quilling

quilled Valentine pomanderPomanders have been around for centuries.  Once used as a way to mask unpleasant odors, modern pomanders are a fun way to add a little extra scent to the air.  This fancy pomander is made from a plain paper mache heart ornament I found in my local craft store (on sale, of course).


Since the heart is hollow, the pomander is surprisingly easy to make:


    1. Replace the hanging thread with your choice of ribbon (this step is optional, but it’s easier if you do it first).
    2. Decoupage the outside of the heart with torn pieces of decorative paper (thinner papers work better than card stock weight papers).
    3. Poke holes into the back of the heart using a sturdy paper piercing tool or awl.
    4. Cut a door into the center of the front of the heart with a craft knife.
    5. Insert your scent of choice (potpourri, perfumed cotton balls, purchased scent beads – you could even use a torn up car deodorizer).
    6. Close the door and seal it up by covering it with additional decorative paper strips.
    7. Decorate the front of the pomander with your choice of trims and quilling design.

pomander steps


To decorate mine, I ruffled a small doily (sew a circular running stitch about a half inch from the doily’s center and pull the thread tight) and glued it to the center of the heart.  I then glued on three rolled roses made from card stock, three sets of leaves made from strips of crimped quilling paper, and bits of red pearls left over from a Christmas project done long ago.


Inexpensive and oh, so pretty, these little pomanders would make lovely, and useful, Valentine’s Day gifts.

7 responses so far

Jan 09 2012

Quilled All Occasion Card with Matching Gift Card Holder

I’m not much of a winter person, so by January my thoughts are turning to spring.  When I happened upon some pretty floral scrapbook paper, I used it to create this decidedly feminine card and gift card holder perfect for any occasion.

floral quilling cards

Michaels had their scrapbook paper on sale a few weeks ago and since I was already there, I just had to take a look.  I was happy to find a floral with a small pattern that I thought would work well with quilling.  My idea was to make a card using the paper and decorate it with a quilled version of the floral pattern. 


At least that was the plan, but after a few false starts I was beginning to wonder if this project would ever come together.  Then, I had one of those sleepless nights and tried again at 4:00am.  This time everything just came together. 


close up of quilling flowerThe flowers on the paper are simple 5-petal posies.  I wanted to maintain the look and feel of this style, but couldn’t resist jazzing the petals up a bit.  Instead of keeping the flower petals flat, I gave them dimension by rolling them as tight coils and then letting them uncoil just a little instead of all the way before gluing down the end and pinching them into teardrops.  This allowed me to take the end of my quilling tool and gently push out the center.  I then smeared glue on the back of the petals so that when dried, they would keep their new shape.  For even more dimension, I angled the petals a bit when gluing them together to form the completed flower.

quilled petals

Since the card would be handled, I glued two strips of quilling paper together for the vine so that it would be a little sturdier.


With the card done, I turned my attention to the gift card holder.  It is made using an empty toilet tissue roll!  I have no idea how I missed this recycling trend, but it was new to me.  I first saw it used in a project created by the very talented quiller, Sue Custer (Hi, Sue!).  She is on the Custom Quilling design team and used a toilet tissue roll to create a gift card pocket holder tag (you can see it here).  When I asked Sue about it, she directed me to an earlier project where she used the toilet rolls to make a cute mini album (you’ll find it here along with some directions). 


I had a hard time keeping the roll flat so I cut the tube and made mine into a fold-out card holder.  I decorated the tube inside and out with the same paper as the card then cut a strip the width of the holder and glued down just the ends to form a pocket for the gift card.  It is still curved, but I know that the gift card is secure and won’t fall out.

gift card with quilling tag

I closed the gift card holder by wrapping it with a piece of the same ribbon I used on the card and tied a matching bow.  The ribbon just slips off to open the card holder and both can be used again and again.  How’s that for recycling? 


To finish off the gift, I created a matching gift tag using a left over pricing tag as the base.  I covered one side with the floral paper and the other with the dotted paper.  I quilled one more flower using the cupped petals and added a quilled leaf.  I stamped a sweet sentiment on the dotted paper side and tied the tag onto the bow. 

quilled gift card tag

Whew!  That was a long post, but I hope I have inspired you to make your own matching card and gift card holder set. 


For those of you interested, the floral paper is called “Itsy Bitsy Ditsy” from Recollections (which I think is Michaels’ store brand) and the color is called Pistachio.  The pink polka dot paper is called “Pink with Rose Trim” and is also by Recollections.  It has a green and white stripe of roses down one side of the paper.  I was tickled to find that Quilled Creation’s moss green and pale pink papers were an almost identical color match.

7 responses so far

Feb 06 2010

Upcycled Valentine’s Day Quilling

quilled-valentine-bottleLike most crafters these days, I am saving bottles, wrappers, and other packaging pieces for use in future craft projects.   I was looking through my stash for Valentine’s Day inspiration and found a wonderful glass bottle that used to contain a marinade.  I decided to dress it up and fill it with M&M’s (my husband’s favorite candy) for a great Valentine’s gift.
I didn’t want the gift to look too frilly or girly, and was pleased when I found heart scrapbook paper in shades of beige, pink, and brown (American Craft’s Romance collection, In Love, #34582).  I cut a band of the scrapbook paper to fit the bottle like a wrapper and grunged it up with brown blending chalk.  I kept the quilling embellishment to a minimum, using simple light pink, red, and brown, quilled hearts, inspired by the scrapbook paper, glued down the center.
To make a quilled heart, roll two teardrop coils the same size.  Glue the sides together, starting at the tip and ending just before the curve of the teardrop.  If you are new to quilling, learn how to make a teardrop coil here

Quilled Heart

Quilled Heart

Additional quilling instructions, hints, and information can be found in the Beginner’s Corner.  The quilled hearts used on the scrapbook paper bottle wrapper were made using 8″ strips of 1/8″ paper for the teardrop coils. 

The tag is a collage made from a dictionary page, a February calendar, and more quilled hearts. 
Abbie at The Vintage Moth has been kind enough to post free antique and vintage images for mixed media artists.  I found her post containing several pages scanned from a vintage dictionary.  quilled-valentine-tagThe word “love” was on one of the pages, so I copied the graphic into a photo editing software program, cropped the section I wanted, enlarged it a bit to fit a standard small white tag (3-1/4″ x 1-5/8″) and printed it out on white paper.  I glued it to the tag, trimmed the edges and punched out the tag hole.  The graphic already had a nice aged patina, so I just grunged the edges with brown blending chalk.  Next, I found a free calendar page for February courtesy of homemadecalendars.blogspot.com.  Again I copied the graphic, resized it, and printed it on white paper.  I cut it out and glued it on an angle to the tag, trimming the edges, and highlighted the calendar with light pink blending chalk.  I glued a 3mm flat-backed red crystal on top of the “14” of the calendar to mark the date.  I then quilled three small hearts, one each light pink, red, and brown (teardrop coils made from 3″ strips of 1/8″ paper), and glued them randomly on the tag.  Red fiber string was used to tie the tag onto the bottle.
Quilling Tip:  Use the same graphics and quilled hearts to create a fun ATC for your sweetheart, or use the tag as an embellishment for a Valentine’s Day card.

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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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Nov 03 2009

Library Book Sales

Published by under Quilling News

Twice a year, my local library system conducts a book sale of hardbacks, paperbacks, children’s books, magazines, and tapes, that have been either culled from circulation or donated by patrons for the sale.  With the emergence of online used book sales through ebay, Amazon, etc., the lines are long and the sale is crowded, but if you are up for it, attending one of these events can lead to awesome treasures at a fraction of the price for new books (from $0.10 – $1).  
library-booksI limit myself to two tote bags — if I can’t carry it, I can’t have it.  Others, however, show up with rolling carts and suitcases!  I have purchased some really nice old Christmas craft books along with some new ones on rubber stamping which provide wonderful inspiration for card layouts I can use with my quilling.  For those into altered art, the possibilities are endless.  I was raised in a household where books were revered and you didn’t mark in them, let alone cut them up, so I have a harder time thinking about books as potential art material, however I did pick up a pocket-sized 1978 World Atlas full of maps.  I think that pieces of it would make a wonderful addition to a bon voyage card or scrapbook page of that special trip.
Contact your local library or visit their website to see if they have annual book sales.  For me, I find it well worth the effort.
Quilling Tip:  Readers Digest condensed books, or other nicely bound books, look wonderful as props for your quilling.  Stack two on their side and top them with a piece of your framed quilling to create a bookshelf display you’ll be proud of.

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Aug 11 2009

Quilling Experiment — Puffy Markers

Published by under Quilling Technique

puffy-markersPuffy Velvet Fabric Markers by Marvy® Uchida are, as the name clearly indicates, made for fabrics.  However, paper crafters have discovered these markers and the product packaging now states that they are also “great for paper crafts.”  I was introduced to these markers through a very creative Yahoo! Group I belong to called the Scrapbook Lounge and have long wondered if the markers could be used with quilling.  Now that I have my blog I just had to buy some and try it — all in the name of research, you understand.  LOL!!!
Fig. 1

Fig. 1

Like many markers on the market, when you first open one, you need to shake it and then press the tip down on some scrap paper so the color can fill the tip.  Once the color flows, you are good to go. 

Continuing the rose theme from my last blog entry, I made two red rose buds.  I left one plain (Fig. 1) and painted the other one with the red marker. 
Fig. 2

Fig. 2

After letting it dry for 30 minutes per the instructions, I heated it with the heat gun and it puffed — a lot (Fig. 2).  While I didn’t like it enough to use it on my quilling, I found the effect very interesting and wanted to give it another try.  I quilled another rose bud and applied the fabric paint, but this time I immediately patted it with a paper towel to remove any excess paint. 

Fig. 3

Fig. 3

When I applied the heat gun, it didn’t puff nearly as much (Fig. 3).  The instructions tell you not to rub it after the puff-up effect is achieved, but I just had to touch it and it does, indeed, feel very soft and velvety.  I thought that this rose was worthy of finishing and made it into a card, just like I did with the plain one.

I next tried the yellow marker, but experienced very different results.  I couldn’t get the yellow paint to “puff.” 
Fig. 4

Fig. 4

You’ll see in Fig. 4 that the top rose is plain for comparison.  The middle rose has the puffy paint on, but it just didn’t do anything.  Trying to be fair, I made another yellow rose and gave it go.  In trying to get the paint to puff, you can see that I held the heat gun on the rose too long and burned the paper.  Oops!  I really don’t know if the problem is with the puffy paint marker or the user.  

My pack of markers includes the color black and you might just see this product again as I try it with some spiders and bats at Halloween.  If you would like to give it a try, you will find the Puffy Velvet Fabric Markers in the fabric paint section of your local craft store, not with the paper craft markers.  
How about you?  Do you know of a product that might work well with quilling?  Leave me a comment and I’ll investigate the possibilities.
Quilling Tip:  It is better to quill the rose bud, apply the paint and puff it with the heat tool before finishing the rose with the calyx and stem to avoid the possibility of the puffy paint bleeding onto the calyx.

Newsletter Teaser

The first issue of my newsletter is almost ready.  I don’t want to give away all of the surprises, but I can tell you that it contains a free quilling pattern for the rose featured in this blog, along with complete instructions for turning it into a romantic card for that special someone.  So, if you haven’t yet signed up for my newsletter, do it now.  You won’t want to miss it!

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Jul 24 2009

CHA Crafts SuperShow — and Quilling?

Published by under Quilling News

craft-supershowThe Craft & Hobby Association (CHA) is THE trade organization for craft manufacturers, designers, and instructors.  It sponsors huge trade shows twice a year and almost all of the new crafting products that later show up in the craft stores and online are introduced at these trade shows.  For those of you who remember, Carol Duvall used to do a special each year on HGTV where she would walk the trade show floor and give a sneak peek of what was to come.  I watched each one with the excitement felt by little ones at Christmas and dreamed of the day when I, too, would make a trip to the show.  The problem is — and it’s a big one — the show is open to the trade only.  You must must meet their stringent qualifications to attend.  I am working each day toward this goal, but in the meantime something quite fun has happened…
For the first time ever, the CHA is sponsoring a retail show immediately following the trade show! 
There will be over 60 booths hosting make-n-takes at the show where you can sit down and create a project, learn a new technique from expert instructors and test-drive incredible products. And with nearly 90 different booths at the SuperShow, there will be aisles of inspiration, exciting demonstrations, contests, giveaways and incredible shopping opportunities!   
My sister and I are driving down and going to the show both days so we won’t miss a thing.  I didn’t see any quilling manufacturers on the exhibitor list, but their products might be included in those shown by a retailer.  In any case, you can bet that I am going to keep a sharp eye out for any products that can be used with paper quilling.  I will let you know what I find.
CHA CraftSuper Show
Orange County Convention Center – West Concourse
Orlando, FL, USA
Friday, July 31st 10:00am-6:00pm
Saturday, August 1st 9:00am-5:00pm
TICKETS ON SALE – Open to the Public
$14.00 2-day pass
$10.00 1-day pass
Children under 10 – FREE
*Note — there are many online discounts available.  I received a $5 discount on my 2-day pass.
I encourage anyone who loves crafts and has the opportunity to attend.  It should be such fun.  For full details, just click here

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May 29 2009

Quilled Ladybug — Intermediate Quilling Pattern

I went into a local scrapbooking store yesterday and found a darling magnetic mini frame.  It came in several colors and I started pondering the possibilities.  When I saw the red one, however, one word came to mind — ladybug — and I knew that I just had to have it.  I had originally thought that I would quill the ladybug, glue it to the center frame area, and seal it with an acrylic sealer since the quillwork would be exposed.  Upon further investigation, however, I discovered that the back pulled off and there was enough space inside for the quilling if I used the thin 1/16″ quilling paper.   
The pattern, as written, is really better suited for an intermediate quiller since it does call for 1/16″ wide paper which can be a bit tricky to work with.  However, if you aren’t comfortable working with the thin papers, by all means, please use 1/8″ quilling strips. 
half-circle-coilThe ladybug quilling pattern introduces a new coil called a “half circle.”  To make a half circle, roll a loose coil and pinch it into a teardrop.  Next, instead of pinching the coil again directly opposite from the first point (which forms a marquise), pinch the paper a second time closer to the first point.  You can vary the height of the half circle by placing the two pinched points closer or further apart.
You will need
Basic quilling tools (discussed earlier)
Quilling paper, 1/16″:  red, black, white
quilled-ladybugFree Quilling Pattern — Ladybug
(2) 22″ half circle coil, red (wings) 
(1) 6″, half circle coil, black (head)
(1) 10″, teardrop coil, black (body)
(1) 1″, V-scroll, black (antennae)
(6) 1/2″-1″ tight coil, white (spots)
Using the photo as a guide, glue three white tight coils randomly inside the first red half circle coil forming spots on the wing.  Repeat for the second wing.  Glue the two red half circles together at the top only.  Glue the black teardrop between the two red half circles to form the body.  Glue the 6″ black half circle coil to the top of the ladybug body for her head.  Attach the black V-scroll to the top of the 6″ half circle for the antennae.
This little ladybug would be so cute on a card or decorating a scrapbook page.  I framed mine.
quilled-ladybug-frameAdditional Materials for Framed Ladybug
(1) Magnetic Mini Frame from Bazzill Basics Paper (holds a 1-3/4″ x 1-3/8″ photo), red, or similar frame
(2) 6″ pieces of 3/8″ ribbon, black with white stitching
(2) 3/8″ black buttons
(1) 1/2″ white button
Small piece of red floss
Scrap card stock:  white, green
Small leaf stamp (See-D’s or similar)
Black ink (StazOn or similar)
Cut the white card stock 1/4″ larger than the opening.  Stamp the leaf onto the green card stock and cut out.  Glue the ladybug to the leaf and attach both to the white card stock.  Glue the white card stock to the back of the frame with the leaf and ladybug showing inside the opening.  Tie the two pieces of ribbon together to form a decorative knot.  Referring to the photo, wrap the ribbon around the bottom of the frame, centering the knot, and secure the ends in the back.  Clip the ribbon ends at the knot on the diagonal.  Tie the red floss through the white button; clip ends.  Glue the buttons onto the upper left-hand corner of the frame.
Sit back and admire your quilling.  Don’t forget to sign your artwork!

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May 26 2009

Resizing a Quilling Pattern

It is very easy to change the size of a quilling pattern to fit your specific background — simply use a shorter or longer strip of quilling paper to make your quills.  (A “quill” is just a generic name for your scrolls and/or coils.)  With some practice, you will discover the size of the paper strip that will give you the size quill you need. 
quilled-matchbook2For example, I found the cutest matchbook notepad template from Mirkwood Designs and thought that the floral pattern from “Quilling a Twinchie — Beginner Pattern” would be perfect on it.  After printing out the matchbook template I discovered that the actual space available for the quillwork was only 1″ x 2″ which was too small for the twinchie pattern.   To make the quilling design fit the new project I needed to reduce it, so I cut the length of the quilling strips called for in the pattern in half (except for the tight coil used for the flower center — I kept that at 1″ since smaller than that is difficult to work with).
resize-quillingSo instead of:
(5) 6″ marquise coil, blue
(1) 6″ teardrop coil, blue
(1) 1″ tight coil, white
(1) 7″ V-scroll, green
(1) 4″ V-scroll, green
the quilling pattern used for the matchbook notepad is:
(5) 3″ marquise coil, pink
(1) 3″ teardrop coil, pink
(1) 1″ tight coil, white
(1) 3-1/2″ V-scroll, green
(1) 2″ V-scroll, green
As you can see in the comparison photo, the pink floral on the matchbook is just about half the size of the blue floral twinchie.
Don’t shy away from a quilling pattern just because it isn’t the exact size you need.  Now that you know how to adjust the length of the quilling paper strips to make your quills larger or smaller, you can make any quilling design work for you.
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