Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

Quilling Gives Cards Elegant Finish

Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

Quilling Gives Cards Elegant Finish

Article excerpt

Want to add a little panache to your Valentine's Day cards? Learn how to roll a few quilling shapes - hearts, teardrops and petals, for starters - to convey your love. Quilling - an ancient craft also known as paper filigree - doesn't require any special tools to get started. It's essentially the rolling of narrow strips of paper to make simple shapes for use in artwork and handmade cards. Complementary techniques have developed over time, such as delicately cut and curled or fringed flowers.

A quilled card that she received several years ago fascinated Kari Cronbaugh-Auld of Olathe, Kansas, so she got to experimenting - and then perfecting - her craft. Today, she sells handmade cards and other gifts at her online Etsy shop, Quillique. Wedding invitations framed by intricate, quilled details are a top seller for her.

"It looks easy, but it's time-intensive, says Cronbaugh-Auld, a social worker and grant writer who quills in her spare time.

A simple Valentine's Day card - one heart or a few scrolls - is a good project for beginners.

Cronbaugh-Auld, who is self-taught, recommends picking up a quilling kit at a craft store and watching tutorials on YouTube. Quilling books include supply lists and basic techniques.

Quilling paper and equipment, such as a slotted tool - the slot at the tip helps start paper rolling - are sold at craft stores. Beginners also need fine-tipped tweezers and craft glue that dries clear and quickly. And that's about it.

After all, none of these supplies were even available to the Renaissance monks and nuns who decorated holy pictures and relic vessels with the precious strips of gold-edged paper that resulted from bookmaking. Their paper filigree - created by wrapping thin paper strips around a feather quill - replicated ironwork patterns of the day.

During the Victorian era, well-heeled young ladies learned quilling in addition to needlework. The craft traveled to the Americas, where it was used to decorate cabinets, cribbage boards and picture frames, says Cronbaugh-Auld. …

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