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Paper Quilling - Wheatear Coil Techniques, Shapes and Designs
Many paper quilling shapes are made with the Wheatear Coil technique. Wheatears are loose closed coils. Unlike other small closed coils used in paper quilling, each loop in a Wheatear coil is fixed in place with glue to prevent the centres of the coil from falling out. The coils are usually much bigger and longer than other closed coils. Wheatears are popularly used for making flower stalks, leaves and long strips of grass in paper quilling crafts.
There are several ways to make coils using the Wheatear technique.
Making Wheatears with FingersClick thumbnail to view full-size
Using Your Fingers
If you are deft with your fingers, it is very easy to make the coils. If not, the worst you can end up are badly shaped coils plus a sticky mess with the glue! To make a Wheatear coil, take a strip of quilling paper. Make a small loop at one end of the strip. Apply a little glue at the end and fold the long end over the small loop to make a slightly larger loop. Slightly pinch the glued end with your fingers. Apply glue again and bring the quilling paper strip over the smaller loops. Continue to make more loops until you are satisfy with the size of the coil. You might have to add more paper strips to make a bigger coil.
How to Make Wheatears with a Quilling Board and PinsClick thumbnail to view full-size
Making Coils with A Quilling Board and Pins
Insert five pins into a quilling board and align the pins in a straight line. Wrap a strip of quilling paper around the first and second pins, and glue the paper to secure the loop. Next, wrap the quilling paper around the third pin and apply a small amount of glue on the paper that is wrapped around the first pin. Repeat and continue looping with the fourth and fifth pins. Bring the paper to the first pin and apply glue. Trim off the excess bit of paper. Remove the pins. Pinch the Wheatear coil with your fingers to form the shape you require. This method is the same as making a straight husking.
Instructions on making huskings are available in the following tutorial:
Making Wheatears with a Normal CombClick thumbnail to view full-size
Use of A Quilling Comb
A quilling comb (an afro comb or normal comb can be used) works in the same way as the quilling board and pins method mentioned above. Wrap a strip of quilling paper around the prongs of the comb in the same way as with the pins on the quilling board.
The comb method is very useful in making many beautiful paper quilling coils. If you want to know more about how to make other coils using a quilling comb, a full tutorial with detailed instructions is found here:
How to Use a Pencil to Make Round WheatearsClick thumbnail to view full-size
Using a Pencil or Dowel
The pencil method is used in making Wheatear coils that are round in shape rather than teardrop shaped. Wrap a strip of quilling paper around a pencil and glue the end to secure the first loop. Make a slightly bigger loop over the first loop and glue where the loop touches the paper again. Continue wrapping and looping until you get the coil size you want. Glue to secure the loops and trim off the excess end of the paper. If desired, this Wheatear coil can be shaped by pinching the coil with the fingers.
Fun with Wheatear Coil Technique
Let's have a bit of fun and make a rainbow coil. You can use any of the methods mentioned above to make this coil. In this example, I used my fingers to make the loops!
Take six or seven strips of quilling paper of different colours. Align the ends of the papers together, apply a little bit of glue and stick them all together. Begin with one strip of paper to make a small loop. Then make another bigger loop around the first loop with the next strip of paper that is closest to the small loop. Keep making a loop with a different coloured strip of paper and you will get a rainbow coloured Wheatear coil! You will need an extra strip of paper to do the last loop if the coil is big.
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