A Weekend Project

September 5, 2011

We’re all about the quick and dirty projects that beautify your home. We found this little stereo cabinet for $5 at our local Habitat for Humanity Re-Store. We use it to store overflow cookbooks and other small objects, to reduce the clutter in our dining room and kitchen. We bought a $4 piece of art paper at our local art store, a little spray adhesive, and voila!

Paper and Fauna

April 10, 2011

Today’s post is about quilling. Most people don’t know much about it, if they’ve even heard of it. Most of the rest of you who *do* know what quilling is, probably recall a group of stuffy old ladies making pictures of tea kettles and kittens. I got in to quilling after seeing Yulia Brodskaya‘s art. She is hands-down amazing.

To explain further, quilling is basically taking strips of paper, and making designs by rolling them up in some manner. Yulia’s work goes a bit beyond that, but you get the idea. Quilling is typically very small work, very neurotic, and of course perfectly suited to my tastes.

My lastest fun with quilling is making paper flowers. To make them, you’ll need a few items- namely some glue, strips of paper, and a ceramics needle tool/quilling tool or similar. Most quilling strips are around 3/16″ wide. I use them in my flowers to make the centers. I then cut my own strips of paper. However wide your strip of paper is, is how tall the blossom will be. To make a daisy,  start with a strip of paper rolled in to a peg. This basically means roll your paper as tightly around the needle tool as you can, gluing the end down before slipping it off.

Next take your blossom paper and fringe it. I just got a spiffy new pair of “Grassing” scissors from Martha Stewart and I like them okay. You can also hand fringe your paper. Have fun with that.

After fringing your blossom strip, glue it to your peg and begin rolling it tightly around your peg.

Glue the end down, and carefully fold back your fringed pieces. You can stack and layer the fringed sections to create more layers of texture in your blossom. I also like using double-sided paper so that it looks pretty from all sides.

Your flowers can be placed on cards, boxes, or stems. For stems, I was using green wire, until I realized that the floral section of my local craft store has pre-cut wire pieces for stems. Much easier in my opinion. Floral tape is also convenient for keeping your stems together. Feel free to add leaves to your flowers, particularly to help cover the peg to stem area, and give it a nicer look. I’ve also experimented with flower buds and other ways of adding filler.

To make roses, I cut strips in to gentle wave patterns so that you get a nice overlapping appeal. I also glue those more loosely, rather than as a tight peg. You’ll have to experiment a bit to see what works best for you.

A nice vase, some ribbon, and you have yourself a pretty bouquet of flowers. Not just for grandma anymore!