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The Art of Quilling: Unique Paper Creations

Updated on January 8, 2018
pstraubie48 profile image

Patricia is a mother, a grandmother, a sister, a daughter whose passion is to put into writing things she feels and experiences.

First things first...Materials you will need

It is recommended for quilling that you have the following:

  • circle sizer
  • circle template board
  • ¬∑quilling tool
  • ¬∑tweezers
  • straight pins
  • craft glue
  • an abundance of colorful strips of paper cut in uniform sizes; a paper shredder is perfect for accomplishing this task
  • Or, a quilng kit (which can be purchases on eBay or other sites on line)

You can connect two strips of paper together with a dab of glue if desired. Tearing the paper if you wish to use a shorter strip of paper is best as it seems to melt into to the other paper rather than leaving a sharp edge.


  • The tools you need can be purchased on line from Joann fabrics at this time. You can buy a kit which includes paper and a direction booklet for a specific item, for example, butterflies. I prefer the size of the paper from my shredder but I do have some from a kit which I will photograph and show you.
  • The circle sizer or template is used to help you create a coil that is the size desired for the creation you are about to make. When you explore quilling in greater detail you will find a variety of more complex shapes than are shown here. Pictures will help to guide you through the process.
  • Straight pins and tweezers will help you when you are ready to arrange pieces for gluing on a matte or other surface. You will also use a dab of glue to hold the end of your piece of paper together after you make a shape.
  • Two strips of paper can be connected with a dab of glue if desired. Tearing the paper if you wish to use a shorter strip of paper is best as it seems to melt into to the other paper rather than leaving a sharp edge.

Quilled Butterfly


Quilling is an art form that many have seen but may not have known the name given to it. It is a type of paper rolling that results in unusual pieces of art. Cute and amusing pieces can be created as a result of quilling as well.

Shapes are made and connected together resulting in a design that is unique and splendid. Even the cute or amusing pieces cause those who view it to admire the handiwork. It takes skill to create a well produced quilled art work. I am just learning how to create in this way so my quilling can only improve.

Be patient...this project cannot be rushed


When you are ready to branch is a novel project

View 1: Paper Shredder Paper View 2: Kit Paper


Quilling's history

Some historians believe that quilling had its beginning in the sixteenth or seventeenth century. Others believe it may have been around much longer than that. It is believed that the first quillers were nuns or monks. Evidence of this type of work has been found indicating they would use handmade paper to quill. It is said that sometimes they would cut the edges off of the pages of books to use for quilling. They would turn them into beautiful ornate religious designs.

It is likely that quilling was an offshoot of creations that had been made with metal prior to the time of paper quilling. In the eighteenth and nineteenth century the cost of paper was not as great as previously That may be the reason that quilled productions became more popular. In England ladies who had little to occupy their afternoons took up quilling as a hobby. When colonists went to America, this hobby accompanied them. It began to wane in popularity and as a result in about 1875 someone marketed a quilling kit which helped rekindle an interest in this craft.

Quilled Creations Beginner Quilling Kit
Quilled Creations Beginner Quilling Kit

To me this was very helpful. I had no idea how to quill or what I needed so when I first began this was just what I needed.


Lady Rain shares so much we need to know to turn out beautiful quilled works of art.

In this article she shows quilled flowers that are fringed and she walks you through the process. It is so helpful. I am learning so much.

Fundamentals of quilling are covered including illustations. So helpful and important to know.

This is such a helpful video if you wish to try this lovely project

Tight Coil/star


V scroll/S scroll


C scroll/Heart scroll


Three More Shapes


To Make These Shapes

  1. tight coil:---using a tool or a rounded toothpick. coil your paper very tightly
  2. star---------make a tight coil, then mash sides in until a star shape forms. It takes a little maneuvering.
  3. . V scroll---using a tool, curl the ends of a strip of your paper, crimp midway between the scrolled ends
  4. S scroll---curl the end of a strip of paper in one direction and the other end in the opposite direction forming an 's' shape
  5. C scroll---tightly scroll a strip of paper so that it appears to have made a 'c' shape
  6. heart scroll---scroll the tips of a strip of paper inward and crimp the middle of the paper so you form a heart shape
  7. marquise---make a moderately tight coil, mash the edges on both sides so they are pointed
  8. teardrop---make a moderately tight coil, mash one side so that it pushes the coil into a teardrop shape
  9. petal---repeat the teardrop steps and then slightly twist the end you mashed so that it curves inward

A Little Glamour on the Flower


Learn a few basics and practice

  • To begin quilling, it is suggested that you learn a variety of basic shapes. As you practice, you will become comfortable making those. Then when you are actually ready to make a creation you will know how to construct the shape needed to produce this desired effect.

Many of the shapes shown below are relatively easy to make. At first it may seem daunting but a little twisting and you will quickly learn them. There are a couple that I found a little tricky. They are the holly leaf and the tulip which are not pictured. You can find examples to view at google images.

The result you end up with will depend on how tightly you roll your paper. That varies from person to person. Not to worry if you think you have made the coil too tight. You can loosen it and cause it to relax some

The shapes discussed in this article are only a few of the possibilities. The uses for them are varied too. You can use them to:

  • decorate a card
  • decorate a package
  • frame or display in a shadow box

As with most crafts, practice is how you will perfect this art.


© 2012 Patricia Scott


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    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 3 months ago from sunny Florida

      Quilling is truly and art form. It is tedious to me but I remain a novice. It is fascinating to see the amazing creations that quilling produces. Angels are once again on the way. ps

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 4 months ago from Houston, Texas

      I have seen some of this crafted art but did not know the name of it. Thanks for introducing me to a new word and its meaning. It would be fun to become proficient in making these pretty designs. Your designs are pretty.

      Sending hugs and prayers your way. Happy Thanksgiving Patricia!

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 2 years ago from sunny Florida

      Hi Peachpurple thanks for stopping by...

      I am still a novice at this...there are so many creative ways to quill turning out gorgeous jewelry and all.

      I hope to get better at this.

      Angels are on the way to you this evening ps

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 2 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      oh beautiful art, i hd seen people twirling these papers into flowers, simply beautiful

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 2 years ago from sunny Florida

      Yes poetryman I am a novice as I stated. I admire so much the work I see that others do as they make magnificent creations.

      Angels are on the way to you this morning ps

    • poetryman6969 profile image

      poetryman6969 2 years ago

      I was looking at this on YouTube once. Some of what I saw there was stunningly beautiful and intricate.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 3 years ago from sunny Florida

      Yes it is fun to do with kids..about the youngest I have done this with. I am totally a novice...I have seen much work that is so far advanced compared to mine it puts me to shame.

      Thanks for visiting Aufait....

      Angels are once again on the way ps

    • Au fait profile image

      C E Clark 3 years ago from North Texas

      I have seen some very intricate quilled art and some that is really beautiful. I think it's great that you help people learn how to get started with this article. It can be a lot of fun for kids too, starting with simple projects.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 5 years ago from sunny Florida

      Good morning Steph...I imagine that those who have been quilling for some time find it easy and quickly accomplished. I am just learning so it is a bit challenging for me. But the results are amazing. Thank you again for stopping by.

    • Steph72 profile image

      Steph72 5 years ago from Sunny Fl

      i have always wanted to try this and have seen some really pretty stuff done just don't know if i could sit long enough to get one dine LOL i wanna be a Jeanie and blink my eyes and have be done

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 5 years ago from sunny Florida

      peter, Thanks for sharing this. I will view it. I always like to find new ways to make projects I am just learning. This project takes time and patience which I am endeavoring to display.. thank you for stopping by.

    • profile image

      peter 5 years ago

      The envelopes which are crafted from the hand are beautiful and the envelopes are of different sizes such as the dl envelope etc. The envelope is said to be the thing which gives the first impression of the card so it should be nice.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 5 years ago from sunny Florida

      strarstream answer your question first I am not sure about beads but you can make jewelry. Wonder wool who commented tells me she has made lots of jewelry using this method. My attempts are very modest as I am just learning. Practice makes perfect certainly applies in this case. I will keep on honing this craft.

      Thank you for stopping by and for the kind words. I was very undecided about sharing this an I am only a novice in this area.

    • starstream profile image

      Dreamer at heart 5 years ago from Northern California

      You have covered this topic beautifully! I enjoyed reading your profile too. Following you will be interesting. I enjoy beading and making jewelry. Can you make your own beads using this technique?

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 5 years ago from sunny Florida

      Wonder Wool thank you...I am just learning so my work is probably very amateurish to someone who can make jewelry in this fashion. Wow..I am impressed. Maybe someday...

      thank you for stopping by...I will be over to visit real soon

    • Wonder wool profile image

      Priyanka Estambale 5 years ago from United States

      Quilling is awesome. I have made loads of jewelry from quilling. this is a great hub.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 5 years ago from sunny Florida

      These really are pretty simple. They are shapes that I found on the little booklet that came with the skinny quilling paper I ordered. These really are quite simple. I never did this in school..lucky you, if you did. Thanks for stopping by

    • Brandon Martin profile image

      Brandon Martin 5 years ago from Colorado, USA

      Really cool. I think we used to do that stuff in school. Sounds fun. I want to see if I can make your shapes.