I remember when we first added the “Quilling” category to our sidebar. A kind reader emailed me to tell me that I misspelled “Quilting.” I replied that "quilling" is, in fact, a form of papercrafting. Her comment made me realize, however, that quilling isn't widely known as an art form. (Just type the word "quilling" and spell-check thinks you meant to type "quilting.")
I must admit that I had never heard of quilling until a few years ago, even though the fundamentals of quilling were something I did quite often. Have you ever found yourself playing with a thin strip of paper? Like rolling it around a pencil until the strip curls up very tightly? And then do you unspin it to make a fun little spiral piece of paper?
This, my friends, is quilling! Who knew it was its own “thing?”
Here is a more technical definition of quilling, copied and pasted from Wikipedia. Quilling, which is also called paper filigree, is an art form that involves the use of strips of paper that are rolled, shaped, and glued together to create decorative designs. The paper is wound around a quill to create a basic coil shape. The paper is glued at the tip and the coil shaped, these shaped coils are arranged to form flowers, leaves, and various ornamental patterns.
During the Renaissance, French and Italian nuns and monks used quilling to decorate book covers and religious items. The paper most commonly used was strips of paper trimmed from the gilded edges of books. These gilded paper strips were then rolled to create the quilled shapes. Quilling often imitated the original ironwork of the day.
In the 18th century, quilling became popular in Europe where gentle ladies of quality ("ladies of leisure") practiced the art. It was one of the few things ladies could do that was thought not too taxing for their minds or gentle dispositions. Quilling also spread to the Americas and there are a few examples from Colonial times.
The craft has gone through many transformations and changes through the ages using new techniques, styles and materials. Dimensional quilling creates 3D items.
Today, quilling is seeing a resurgence in popularity with quillers (people who practice the art of quilling) on every continent and in every walk of life. No longer confined to the "upper classes", this is a people’s art form and the beauty of the art is always expanding. The craft has become increasingly popular due to the low cost of the material. It is used to decorate wedding invitations, birth announcements, greeting cards, scrapbook pages, and boxes. Quilling can be found in art galleries in Europe and in the United States and is an art that is practiced around the world.
Here is my question for all of you quillers out there...
How do you glue the pieces? Is there a special tool? A special technique? A certain type of glue?
Please share your tips and tricks with us!