Tuesday, August 30, 2011

It's a Bug's Life

Ladybug spots: 4" black quilling paper, then
wrap 6" red quilling paper.  Glue together,
set with pins to keep the shape.

Wrap a 12" red quilling paper around each
set of ladybug spots

Quill 4" black marquise for the body and
2" black tight circle for the head
V scroll for the antenna

I added a 4" red tight circle to fill in the blank
spot in each wing.

My Little Guillotine

I love my little nifty fringer.  It makes the best daisies!
3/8" paper fed through the fringer

The fringer makes even cuts.  A small allen wrench
can make adjustments to make the cuts narrower
or wider, or to make the cuts deeper.

To make a daisy, I glue the fringed paper to the
end of a strip of contrasting color

I quill all the way to the end of the fringed paper

Then glue the very edge

With the daisy still in the tool, I spread the petals down
and let it bloom!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Art Imitates Art

This is a piece that took me about a month to create.  It was inspired by my daughter's faith formation book.  As parents, we were expected to home-school our kids in the Catholic faith.
Inspiration for Nativity Quilling

I've always loved stained glass paintings, and this design intrigued me.
“People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within.”
 Elisabeth Kubler-Ross quotes (Swiss-American psychiatrist and author )
So I scanned the picture and used it as a template:
I quilled each section, shaping it to the stained
glass panel, then wrapped each section with
black quilling paper to set the section off.

I held the sections with pins so that they would retain the shape

Slowly the image was forming

I changed some of the colors as the original had too many red panels for  my taste

In October 2007, wildfires ravaged California.
We evacuated and I forgot to pack this project-in-progress.

Inspired by Birth of Christ by E. Eger

Thankfully, our house did not burn down.  I stopped doing my craft fairs in 2008, and I never sold this piece.  But every Christmas, this graces our mantelpiece.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Getting Inspired

When I teach a quilling class, I tell my students that learning to quill is just like learning a new language.  One has to start with the ABC's.  The basic shapes and coils form the foundation of everything.  Any design can be broken down to its little components.
The ABC's of Quilling
I have found inspiration in many ordinary items.  My favorite one is the design on a cloth napkin.
Inspiration for Tree of Life Quilling
Once I had quilled the trunk, the secret of creating the design on paper was to follow the branches, then fill in the leaves, the pears and the partridge.
Basic foundation of the tree project

The finished project

Partridge in a Pear Tree, detail

I tell people that quilling is also a form of meditation for me.  The intricacy and delicacy of the process demands focus and attention.  It produces a calm, serene feeling.  When I was doing this project, the words that came to mind were those of Ecclesiastes:

Ecclesiastes 3
King James Version

1To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:2A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
3A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
4A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
5A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
6A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
7A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
8A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

Spreading the Good News about Quilling

Quilling projects
Last night, my daughter Gabby and I taught a quilling class. I had so much fun seeing other people enjoy this art form.  Even people who claimed to have no artistic talent whatsoever finished the make-and-take projects by the end of the class. It was quite rewarding to see how quickly everyone learned, with some creating other designs beyond the class scope.  We had eight adults and four children, the youngest of whom was about five or six years old.  She wanted to make a smiley face, and when I asked her to describe it afterwards, she said, "This is my Mommy."  This is what teaching quilling means to me.

On the way home, Gabby thanked me for bringing her. She was glad to help others.  It made her feel like a grown-up!  I am thankful to her too, and for the times that we share together as mother and daughter. On top of this, it also teaches her what my grandmother had always taught me, "Your talent is useless unless you share it." 

This quilling class was a fundraiser for my friend Michelle's 3-day walk.  Please take time to visit her page:

Make-and-take project for the class

Sunday, August 7, 2011

White Elegance

Today I felt like quilling in white.  I love these dainty designs. The umbrella in particular was quite a surprise. I did not pinch the paper the usual way, but was delighted in the waviness my "mistake" created.
Ladies' fans

Wedding shower
Lovebirds for a wedding card

Saturday, August 6, 2011