The Art of Quilling
by Maggi Stivers, staff writer
Joy Tader could be described as a crafty person. She’s a quilter, does cross stitch and enjoys rubber stamping, but there’s one craft that Tader finds to be most relaxing.
“I just want to quill. The thing of it is, quilling, it’s so easy that is relaxes me,” she explained.
Taking after her mother’s love of crafts, Tader learned how to quill when she was about 10 years old. She hasn’t always consistently quilled since, mostly on and off over the years. Quilling was popular in the ’70s, but died down in the ’80s before once again picking up popularity in the ’90s.
“I did a little bit here, a little bit there during that time but once it started to kick in again, I’ve been going just gung-ho with different projects and different things,” Tader said.
Quilling involves the curling and bending of small strips to paper to create artwork. The craft got its name from the historical concept, when a feather quill was used to roll the strips of paper.
Today, Tader makes several crafts that include the art of quilling. Anything from small cards with a quilled element to three-dimensional animals or elaborate wedding gifts.
“I take the wedding invitations and then I double mat it and I do a flower arrangement on top and then a smaller one, so both corners are done quite well,” she said.
Most of the items Tader has quilled require a pattern that includes step-by-step instructions.
“I am just starting to do things as I have more time, to try and do things on my own but it doesn’t work out too well. Patterns work out better for me,” she explained.
Through the years Tader has learned a few tricks. When starting with a new strip of paper, she tears off the ends.
“Because there’s a little glue at the end of it, but by tearing the paper, it helps the glue to stick,” she said.
Tader doesn’t know of many others locally who quill, but is interested in meeting some people who do and could benefit from that relationship.
“To see how they do it and their techniques, everybody has their own different techniques on how to quill,” she said.
For those new to quilling, Tader offers once piece of advice: “Start simple, start with flowers, they are normally the easiest.”
Basic Quilling Tools
1) Quilling circle sizer, ruler with hole sizes coordinating to quilling coil sizes.
2) Slotted quilling tool, provides the ability to quickly and easily produce tight rolls.
3) Needle quilling tool, makes small centers in rolls and scrolls ruler and circle sizer.
4) Curling coach for beginners, works with a slotted quilling tool to make, hold and roll large tight circles.
5) Tweezers, used to handle small pieces.
6) Scissors, used to cut and trim pieces of paper.
7) Quilling kit, contains paper and directions for beginner designs.
Joy Trader was featured in the Fall 2015 issue of inMagazine.