I have recently taught myself all about quilling thanks to the wonderful world of Pinterest *cough*time waster*cough* and thought I would share my new-found knowledge with you, my Constant Reader. However, before I get to that I just want to show you where I’m blogging from today!!!
This is the balcony of the cute little hotel room in Mooloolaba I’m currently staying at. If you look close enough you can see two little snippets of ocean! I am so close to the beach I can walk there in less than 5 minutes. The smell of the ocean is divine, the breeze coming in through the room is wonderful. The sound of the water falling across rocks in the pool below is soothing. The spa in the bathroom is relaxing.
I have even set up a beautiful little crystal grid altar on the breakfast bar of the kitchenette.
This is the beauty of where I type to you today! I just love it here. I grew up in Mooloolaba as a teenager, so a large chunk of my soul rests here. I often wish I’d never left. However, I’d never do my life any other way because I absolutely adore my husband and 3 children and even the slightest change in my past could alter that course. So I have come here for 5 days and am rejoicing in being here. It still feels like home to me. It is still my happy place. I love the beach, I love the sand (nature’s glitter and we all know I love glitter!!), I love the laid back pace of the Sunshine Coast where you can just casually cross the road without worrying someone will run a red light and run you over.
Anyway enough of the rabbling. I’m here today to show you a bit about this quilling that has a lot of my attention lately. I thought I would start off with showing you the tools of the trade. This first photo has a quill paper bundle – which you could do yourself if you were that way inclined, I’m just not. I’d rather spend the time making the art not preparing the materials! Also you can see the quilling tool, it has a slit in the end for you to feed the paper in to, so it will hold tight as you twist the paper in to a circle (mandala anyone?! No wonder quilling appeals to me)
This next photo has a pair of pointy ended tweezers, I’m sure there is a proper name for them but it just isn’t coming to me right now. The tweezers are very handy for placing the little fiddly bits in to place as well as dipping them in to some glue before placing them. Just above the tweezers is just a blunt metal spike. I generally use that to hold the paper in place while the glue dries. That way it stops my fingers getting too sticky – though they tend to anyway – and also the excess glue comes off the metal really easy, whereas I was using skewer sticks before I got this tool and it was just messy and gluggy. Above the metal spike is some cheap glue. The type that dries quick and clear. Any of the glue you used in primary school is perfect for this, or pvc glue. Lastly there is a comb. Yeap, a comb! It is a marvellous tool for creating shapes other than circles. What I particularly like about this comb is it has two different sets of teeth, a smaller set and a wider set, which makes it easy for me to do the same thing in different sizes.
Now we’ll get to some of the basics….
The very top circles are called ‘tight’ circles. You wrap those as tight as you possibly can and then glue them. The next set of circles are called ‘loose’ circles. As you can see, they can all be done in different sizes, it just depends on how much paper you use! Also you can do them in multiple colours, you just need to glue the different coloured papers together in a long line. This definitely makes for some extra interest in the designs. With this lot alone you can make just about any other shape you want, from a love heart, to a leaf, a teardrop to a triangle and more. The very last set of circles have an ‘off’ centre. These are really cute and I like them. I haven’t had a chance to experiment with these yet but you could also make things like teardrops and leaves out of these. The off-centre ones are also a way to add extra interest to a design.
This photo shows one of the many things you can do with a comb. You use the comb to help you with the loops and make them relatively even, then with a little creative thinking and your curling tool you can twist and turn those loops and pop them in to a large leaf shape to make yourself a pretty cool looking flower!
Here are some more cool shapes you can make.
Once you have those circles down, you can easily make some really pretty designs. The tight circles alone could make some interesting pieces if you think of those artworks where they use nothing but dots. I could see some amazing artwork coming out of something like that! I do find quilling takes a LONG time though. So you definitely need some patience. On the plus side though, it’s easy enough to just sit there and make the bare elements while you’re watching tv. Once you have all the elements you need you can just sit down and play with them until you come up with a design you love. Like this ATC I made for the atc b’day club I’m in. One of my lucky b’day girls will receive this from me before the year is out!
I’d love to do a mandala with this technique and I do plan to one day, however after doing the atc which is only 3.5 x 2.5 inches big, I realise just how long a quill mandala would take me! So I might have to do that one in bits and pieces, not during my 100 mandalas in 100 days challenge. Remember if you haven’t already you can sign up to that in the top right hand corner of this blog 🙂 It’s almost over, but I will continue to share my artwork via the newsletter and perhaps let people know when I’ve posted a new blog, tutorial or class! I’d love to see you on my list.