I’ve always admired quilled art, but I’ve never really tried it because it looks so tedious and time consuming. I’ve seen a lot of really pretty creations that have come from quilling and I wanted to see if I could make something as nice as the creations I’ve seen.
I decided that I wanted to make some flowers but I didn’t want to spend a ton of time rolling and gluing. I basically wanted a piece of paper that I would roll up, and like magic, be instantly transformed into a flower. I know they sell cutouts like these and dies that can make cutouts like these, but I wanted to be able to design unique flowers and petals on my own.
To create my design, I used a free program called Inkscape and I used my Silhouette Portrait to cut everything out. You don’t need a machine to cut your designs out, but it does make the whole process a lot easier.
You Will Need:
- Cardstock Paper
- Printer and Scissors or Electronic Cutting Machine
Step 1: Rectangle
You need a rectangle to hold the petals in one strip. You want it to be almost as wide and as width of the page (around 7.5 inches) and about a quarter inch high.
- Select the blue rectangle, left-click and drag to create a rectangle.
- Change the dimensions of the rectangle near the top of the page in the tool control bar. You can change the units to inches and enter values for width and height (W: 7.5, H: .25).
Step 2: Design Petal
If you know how to use Inkscape, use the Bezier Tool to draw a single petal.
If you’re new to Inkscape, it might be easier for you to use the pencil tool instead.
- Select the Pencil Tool. In the tool control bar change the Mode to Bezier Path, Smooth: 10, Shape: None.
- Draw the shape of the petal you want.
- If the lines look crooked you can smooth them out by selecting the object and pressing (Ctrl+L) until it smooths out to your liking.
Step 3: Space Petals Out
- Select the petal and hit (Ctrl+D) 11 times to create 11 duplicates. (you might need more or less but you can fix that later)
- Select all of the petals. It might look like there’s just one but they should all be stacked on top of each other.
- I want the spacing between the petals to be equal to half the width of each petal. Look at the top bar that runs across the screen. Width of Selection is ‘W:’ This is how wide the petal is W: .456
- Go to Object > Arrange
- In the menu change Row to 1 and Columns should automatically to change to the number of petals you have selected.
- Select ‘Set Spacing’ and enter half the petal width (.228) as the X value. Y should be zero.
- Select ‘Arrange’ and the petals should space themselves out.
Step 4: Move and Combine
- Move the row of petals down so that they overlap with the rectangle. All of the petals should also be within the width of the rectangle. Anything extra should be deleted. If you need more petals, make more duplicates (Ctrl+D) and redo the arranging process.
- When you have something that you like, to make it into one piece, select everything (Ctrl+A) and go to Path> Union.
Step 5: Save or Print
- If you’re going to be cutting these out by hand, just print directly from Inkscape and cut with scissors or craft knife.
- If not, select your strip of petals and go to File> Export PNG Image.
- A menu should pop up on the right hand side of the page. Choose ‘Selection’ and pick a destination and name for you file (Export As), hit ‘Export’ to save it to your computer.
Step 6: Silhouette Studio
- Open your .png in Silhouette Studio
- Resize to original size (drag until it’s 7.5 inches wide- the original length of the rectangle)
- Trace the outer edge and send to cut.
Step 7: Quilling
- For the center of the flower, you can roll a plain strip into a tight coil. Secure the end of the coil with a bit of glue.
- Glue one end of a strip of petals to the coil. Wrap the petal strip around and when you get to the end, secure it with a bit of glue.
- Continue adding strips of petals. Glue the beginning of each new strip where the last strip left off.
- Mix and match different sizes and colors of petals to create unique flowers.
- Curl and rearrange petals to make fuller flowers.