Sunday, November 27, 2011

Ombre Snowflake (and basic quilling tutorial)

I really love the ombre trend that's flying around the fashion and blog world these days! I thought I'd try my hand at a quilled, ombre snowflake. And since there was a request for some basic quilling tips, I thought I'd throw those in too.* Quilling takes a bit of practice, and a lot of patience, but in the end is not nearly as complicated as it looks.

Your basic needs are a quilling tool (a pen-shaped dealy with a slotted end), a pin (for applying delicate dots of glue), glue (I like Aileen's fast-drying glue for all my paper crafts. I've also been known to use Mod Podge...basically you want a any glue that dries quick and clear), and of course quilling paper.
This is quilling paper. It can be purchased in a variety of colors at most craft stores for $3-$5. Most the time it comes an 1/8" wide. You can cut your own, but it's a lot of brain damage to cut 1/8" strips whilst making sure that the edges are straight!
Step 1:
Hold the quilling tool like so, and slip one end of the paper through the slot.
(And please ignore my water-stained desktop.)
Step 2:
Twist the paper while keeping a reasonable amount of tension until you have a tightly-wrapped coil on your tool.
Step 3:
While holding the coil tightly, slip it off the tool.
You want to hold the coil tightly enough that it stays together,
but not so tight that it bends.
Step 4:
Release the coil so that it relaxes into a spiral shape.
This part can be somewhat trial and error,
as you figure out how tight or loose you want your shape to end up.
More on that in a minute.
Step 5:
Pick your spiral up, and using your pin, dab a little bit of glue on the end.
You only want enough glue to get it to stick.
If you use too much, you'll have a gluey mess.
Step 6:
Pinch the coil/spiral into the shape you want.
In this picture, I pinched only one end to make a "raindrop."
Here's what I meant about how loose or tight your shape will end up. These two raindrops were made using the same length of paper, however, I let one relax into a larger coil, so the over all shape turned out larger and looser.
Step 7:
Build from the inside out.
Before you glue the pieces to each other
(using small dabs of glue where needed),
play around with them so that they're arranged just how you want them.
There's no taking them apart once they're glued.

(The "raindrops" here were hardly relaxed at all, just enough to give a little detail in the middle.)

Ahh, the subtle color change. It looks so fresh and wintery!
(Is that an oxymoron?)

*This is far from a comprehensive quilling tutorial. I hesitate to call it a tutorial at all, but at least you get the idea of how quilling works. If you're interested in a more complete tutorial, you can find a lot of them by doing a google search for "quilling."

Linked up:
DIY Showoff
Sugar Bee Crafts
Mommy by day, Crafter by night
My Girlish Whims
36th Avenue
Passionately Perfect
The Artsy Girl Connection
Sassy Sites
Tatertots and Jello

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Quilled Snowflake

My poor neglected blog! I'm sorry I've been away so long! But I'm back, and I have lots of Christmas craftiness to share. The first finished project is this quilled snowflake. Quilling is actually an ancient art. And while I'm no pro at it, I think it's really fun. Even the simplest pieces look complicated and ornate when put together. I wasn't following a particular pattern, just sorta made it up as I went along. It didn't take very long, and I love the way it turned out so I'll definitely be making more!

Projects coming up:
Christmas paper flowers
Cinnamon stick candles
Quilled ball ornaments
Glittered pine cones.

Linked up:
Designer Garden
Thirty Days
Tatertots and Jello
Young and Crafty