How to Make Quilled Flowers
Quilled flowers are used to decorate cards, scrapbooks or any type of paper craft. There are many quill flower shapes and forms, and you can make a flower as large or as small as you need for your design simply by making your original paper strip longer or shorter. Usually the crafter makes the pieces of the flower and then attaches the flower pieces to the card or object being decorated.
Cut a strip of paper 1/4 inch wide by the length of the paper. Use a cutting wheel, straight edge and cutting mat to achieve a clean and sharp cut. Or you can use precut quilling strips.
Press the point of a large, thick needle into a cork bottle stopper. This will create a quilling tool that will work fine for most beginning projects.
Scrape your thumbnail across the end of the paper to soften and slightly curl the end of the paper. Position this curled end around the slotted end of the needle. Roll the paper onto the needle between your forefinger and thumb. Roll three to four times, keeping the paper tight against the needle. Then slip the needle out.
Press the top and bottom of the rolled paper together with curved tweezers held in one hand. Roll the paper with the other hand, using the tweezers after each roll. Keep the roll fairly tight. When you reach the end of the paper, decide if you want a tight roll. If you want a tight roll, simply glue the end of the paper to the roll with a drop of white glue. If you want a looser roll, slide the tweezers between the rolls and allow the end to loosen. Be careful to only allow the end to loosen one or two rotations at a time. When the roll is the right size, glue the end to the roll.
Make a flower petal shape by pinching one end of the loosened roll to form a teardrop shape. The end of the paper should be at the flat, pointed side. Make a u-shaped design by loosening the roll and pinching two flat points 1/4 the circumference apart. Press the distance between the pinches toward the center.
Create a ruffled center by cutting a strip of paper 1/2 inch wide by the length of the paper. Cut 1/4-inch cuts perpendicular to the length and 1/16 inch apart. This creates a fringe. Quill into a circle. Assemble your flower petals and center and apply glue to the back of the pieces, arranging them in the shape of a flower.
- Cut thinner strips after you become more of an expert at making quilling shapes. This can create more filigree effects. Quilling tools and specialty papers are also available as you become more advanced.
F.R.R. Mallory has been published since 1996, writing books, short stories, articles and essays. She has worked as an architect, restored cars, designed clothing, renovated homes and makes crafts. She is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley with bachelor's degrees in psychology and English. Her fiction short story "Black Ice" recently won a National Space Society contest.
- Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images