Quillography Tutorial – Paper Graphic
Many of you have asked me to share a few tips and tricks on “quillography”, so I decided to make this tutorial to help you get started. Please note that I have reached these conclusions by the classic “trial and error” method. I am not saying that this is the best way to do it, as I am sure many of the things you will read below could be improved, but it’s the way I feel most comfortable with so far.
For this example, I chose the capital letter “M”, font “Curly Joe” which I modified a bit, with aprox. size: 13cm * 11cm. You may choose whatever you want.
Print the desired letter (or word, number, etc.), then copy its contour on the surface where you want to quill it, using a pencil.
If the contour is too harsh, use an eraser to soften the line as we only need it as a guide and don’t want it visible in the finished project.
For my “Thank You!” quillography I printed red letters on a A4 sheet of paper and then I quilled directly on it, hence the full red text. Depending on what you want to achieve, use whatever method suits you better.
II. Paper Strips
Make sure to use 120gsm or thicker paper. Thin paper (like office paper, 80gsm) will loose its shape and absorb moisture from the glue, thus becoming very hard to work with. In contrast, high density paper, like 160gsm holds it’s shape very well, but sometimes it can split, if twisted too much.
To give you an example, I used 160gsm paper for the quilled G clef and 120gsm for the “Thank you!”, “home” and “love” quillography. Again, try different types of paper and see which suits you best. For my next project, I am planning to work with 200gsm or thicker paper and see how it goes.
5mm wide paper strips are perfect for these type of projects! If you plan on quilling a big project (larger than A4), make sure to use wider strips.
III. Start Gluing!
Choose one of the corners as your starting point. Apply the glue in a thin line using a needle or a toothpick on the surface where you want the paper strip to stick, and NOT on the strip itself. Use PVA or vinyl glue as it dries clear and doesn’t leave any marks. My favorites from the ones I used so far are from BIC and Toy Color (both very cheap, by the way).
If the contour you want to quill is very curvy, run the paper strip between your fingers. This will curl and soften a little bit the paper, making it easier to work with.
Place the paper strip on the surface where you applied glue and hold it in place for a few seconds until the glue dries. If necessary, use your tweezers to hold the paper.
When you reach another corner, you can use a toothpick as a guide to help you fold the paper along the line. If the corner is more rounded, instead of pointy, use a thicker tool, like a pencil.
Carefully finish quilling your letter. You will end up with a contour which you can fill as you like, leave it like that, or quill around it. I like making little swirls from 1cm – 2cm paper strips, then glue them inside the letter. Only your imagination is the limit!
Later edit with the finished quilled letter:
Note that this quilling method requires a lot of patience and practice. Start with easy shapes until you get used with the process, then move to more complex ones.
I hope you found my quillography tutorial useful! If you have more questions, please leave me a comment and I will do my best to answer them. Also, if you have suggestions or would like to share other tips and tricks don’t hesitate to write them!
Thank you for your visit!