Friday, December 26, 2008

Giving and Quilling

For our Keeper's and Contender's Club project this month I led a lesson on quilling. I had just learned the craft myself as I browsed the handbook for inspiration. Quilling offers a wonderful, simple, yet beautiful craft that is fairly simple for even little hands (6 and 7 year olds attempted this with much success) to master.

I opened our time with a devotional that brought us back to the purpose of our club. While often our time centers around a craft that highlights a new skill, this is not simply a craft time. And, although we enjoy getting together with other homeschool families, the focus of this club is mentoring within our family to grow our boys and girls into godly men and women.

We talked about the use of all of our gifts for God and the challenge to give generously. The more skills and gifts we acquire, the more we can give away. In preparing for this time I came across an intriguing site that shares so much of what I believe about giving. I love the key verses that they shared including the category titles that they grouped them in. Such a powerful reminder that God owns everything, we should follow His example of extreme generosity, giving combats greed, God blesses us so we may give, and we need to keep God's agenda in mind. They list great verses to illustrate each of those principles.

So, what started as a simple devotional talk to make some practical and spiritual applications for our quilling craft, grew into a powerful personal devotional time for me as well. God continues to work on my heart and I am excited to see where He will lead in this area in the year to come.

Back to quilling . . .

Quilling is a paper craft that involves rolling and gluing. Simple procedures that produce amazing results. You start with quilling strips (purchased at most craft stores or online, see websites at the end of this post)

Quilling strips in a tube of 250 12 inch strips for about $3 at Hobby Lobby.

and a quilling tool (a long handle with a metal tip that has a slit opening at the end of it):

To begin, simply choose a strip and insert it into the slit at the top of the tool. Move the tool to the end of the paper strip and then spin the tool so the paper wraps around the tip to form a spiral coil.
Pop the coil off the end of the tool. You can then glue the end down as is for a tight coil, or . . .

Let the coil loosen for a loose coil that can then be shaped and pressed into a variety of designs from ovals to diamonds to squares. The end is glued in place to retain its desired shape.

After you have created a number of shapes these can be glued together (while working on a wax paper surface for easy removal when dry) to form anything from snowflakes to people.

My first attempt, I was pretty impressed!

My girls (7 and 9) made these flowers to put on a card for me that I just opened on Christmas. These were their first attempts at quilling and they really enjoyed it.

Many stores also sell kits that provide patterns and special colors to create projects for a specific holiday or theme. These kits run only a couple dollars and provide some beautiful pieces that could be used as ornaments, card decorations, or to enhance picture frames or other gifts.

I also found some great websites that offered patterns and other quilling resources: (the same company that makes the kits that I bought)
A Handcraft site with a nice little section on quilling.
I used this quilling site extensively for its good descriptions of the basic shapes and some very simple designs to form for beginners.
For online purchases, this "quilling superstore" has quite a bit to offer.
To see some beautiful quilling in a variety of projects see this keepsake site.
One last site, whimsiquills, with lots of beautiful pieces and some simple patterns available for free as well.
And, if you get hooked, there is even a yahoo quillers group.

Of course, I checked out a few books from the library for the kids to thumb through in between their projects. Here were a few that we enjoyed:
- Popular Quilling
- Quilling to be used on cards
- The Book of Paper Quilling

There are others out there, these are just a few that I found conveniently at my local library.

If you are looking for a new craft to take up, or supplement your cards or scrapbooks with; or if your children need something to keep their minds and hands busy during the cold winter days ahead, you might consider something so old it is new, and take a spin into the world of quilling.


Quilling with Whimsiquills said...

I'm so happy to see that those of you who are homeschooling are teaching a new generation of quillers who will hopefully continue to keep this beautiful art form alive. Thanks for mentioning my site I also have a blog that might have some topics of interest for you and your new quillers.
Pat Caputo

5intow said...


Thanks for stopping by and mentioning your blog as well. You do beautiful work! We were definitely inspired after visiting your site.


Cindy said...

Thank you for adding this the the carnival! It's a wonderful tutorial. We had so much fun paper quilling at one of our Keeper's meetings, too.

Kris said...

Those turned out great! I'm looking forward to adding it to this week's carnival.

Jimmie said...

This looks doable without fancy tools too. I\'m going to try it! :-) Thanks for the reminder.

5intow said...


It is an easy craft, and even if you can't find quilling tools you can roll it by hand (a little cumbersome) or use tweezers (the pointier the better). And, of course the strips you can cut yourself if you needed to. Hope you have fun with it!


{ jamie } said...

So THAT's how you make those! I've seen them, but never knew it was called quilling. We are going to have to do this ourselves! Thanks for the links, too!

School for Us said...

Thanks for sharing this tutorial. This is much easier than I thought it would be and we'll be giving it a try!

Jenn said...

This was a beautiful blog post and I loved your quilled snowflake!

Free Quilling Instructions for Scrapbooking