Tuesday 31 August 2010

Quilled backdrop for a seashell

Here's my latest card design, featuring a seascape photo which I took a couple of years ago in the beautiful Isles of Scilly. (These wonderful islands are situated just off the coast of Cornwall in the far south-west of England.)

I had in mind that the card might be one for a man who loves the sea, so instead of adding lots of 'feminine' filigree quilling, I decided to use a single quilled motif as the backdrop for a tiny seashell. I made the motif using the 'combing' technique by winding the strip through the prongs of an onion holder, gluing at the base after each successive 'wind'.

The shell, by the way, is a real one which was actually collected in the islands. I always look out for tiny shells whenever I go beach-combing, and this is one of my favourites. I believe it is called a 'painted top', and it's a fabulous example of Nature's wonderful designs.

I guess you could say that this type of quilling is an example of 'beach-combing', too!

Sunday 29 August 2010

Sunset on the beach

I was going to call this card 'Sunrise on the beach' until my husband helpfully pointed out that the beach in the picture (at Weston-super-Mare in the south west of England) faces west, and would never be seen with a rising sun like this!! Anyway, I wanted to quill a shining sun just showing its rays above the horizon; I think it makes a lovely warm and peaceful 'sunset' scene.

Saturday 28 August 2010

Quills of a different kind

The spines of hedgehogs and porcupines are known as 'quills', and the photo on this card shows a lovely little hedgehog who regularly visits our garden.  He let me get right up close to take this picture:

Of course, I then couldn't resist trying to quill a hedgehog as well! I made this one by making a D-shaped coil with a brown strip, and then attaching some fringed sections which I had coloured in roughly using a brown marker pen. The hedgehog's real quills are brown and beige, so I used a beige fringed strip to colour, giving a mottled effect. Then I just added a little rolled black nose!

Thursday 26 August 2010

Straightening things out!

Well, not everyone liked the 'aerial' view of my engagement card, so here's a straight-on view for those who requested it!

I tried a side view shot as well - what's the feeling on this one? I need to get my angles right!! (But I also want to show the depth of the quilling!)

Tuesday 24 August 2010

Quilled engagement card from a different angle

Why do I always photograph quilled card designs straight on? Not only is it difficult to get the camera angle right, but the resulting photo often fails to show the depth and three dimensional nature of the quilling. So here's a card I made today, shot from a different viewpoint. This one's destined for my card basket in our local village cafe.

Monday 23 August 2010

A new venture!

I've had such a good response to my quilled earrings that I've decided to experiment with offering them for sale on-line ... just in a very small way! So Quilliance now has a 'sister' blog - Quilliance Marketplace - which I will use occasionally as a showcase for a few selected designs. Here are the first two:

I'll let you know how I get on!!

Wednesday 18 August 2010

Some new quilled earrings

It's been quite a while since I made any earrings, and my stock has been getting low. So here's a new batch of five pairs ready for me to take to this Friday's market:

Monday 16 August 2010

More coffee jar quillings for paperweights

A while ago, I started experimenting with resin casting techniques for making paperweights, and I had a go at making one out of a glass coffee jar lid. On that occasion, I ended up embedding a paper rose in the resin, using the glass lid as a permanent mould - and I've been stockpiling the lids ever since!

Finally, I've got around to using them - and this time I've hit on something simpler that doesn't require the use of resin.

For this one, I simply made a quilled motif to fit inside the lid, and glued it on to the inside of the glass, retaining the plastic lid seal for use as a base. It's not as heavy or reflective as a proper resin-cast paperweight, but I think it still looks quite effective. Here's a side-view:

I've also used another lid to store some of my stash of unused quillings (which will probably never get used, but I didn't want to throw them away!!) I think they make quite an eye-catching, multi-coloured jumble of shapes inside the glass container. Well, it looks good in my craft room, anyway!

Thursday 12 August 2010

Another quilled card - would William have approved?

Several of my posts this week have been dedicated to the 19th century English artist, William Morris, whose designs have inspired me by their relevance to quilling. Many of his wallpaper and fabric patterns have intricate backgrounds of intertwining leaves, and so I thought I'd try a similar approach - except that the background for this card is actually a photograph of a bush that's growing in my garden! (To keep it subtle, I reduced the opacity of the photo to 60% before printing.) I'm not sure whether William would have approved or not, but I quite like the effect of red, yellow, orange and gold quilled/cut-out shapes against this backdrop of fresh green leaves.

Wednesday 11 August 2010

One beautiful butterfly, and a pair of quilled flowers

Usually I add quilled butterflies to pictures of flowers, so it's nice to do things the other way round for a change!

Tuesday 10 August 2010

Another quilling in the style of William Morris

Encouraged by yesterday's attempt, I have made another quilled design today inspired by the wonderful work of William Morris.  And I've learned something in the process: symmetry isn't just about matching and mirroring shapes - it can be achieved with colours, too.  Anyway, here's the result of another happy afternoon's quilling:

Monday 9 August 2010

A new quilling inspired by William Morris

Last week, I visited a wonderful English country house in the Sussex countryside. It is called Standen, and was built in the late 19th Century using classic 'Arts and Crafts' style architecture and decor. Inside, the house is an absolute treasure trove of fabrics, wallpaper, ceramics and furnishings designed by the famous Victorian artist William Morris.

If you search on 'William Morris' in Google Images, you can see many wonderful examples of this amazing man's work. The colours are rich, the patterns are intricate, the level of detail is breathtaking - and I was totally inspired by what I saw!

I could immediately see that many of the shapes and patterns that Morris designed could be translated into quilling. So here's my own quilled tribute to William Morris, in which I have tried to echo his unique style:

Tuesday 3 August 2010

My latest quilled dragonfly card ... and news of a great quilling forum

My friend asked me to make a card featuring a quilled dragonfly on a picture of a bird of paradise flower. I must admit, I'd never heard of this flower, but checked it out online and discovered that it's a real exotic beauty. I just couldn't wait to start quilling, and this card is the result:

Since I started my blog, I've been amazed to discover the extent of the international quilling community online - it seems that there are enthusiastic quillers crafting away in almost every continent, producing wonderfully inspiring work. Last week I joined an excellent forum, hosted in Australia, which is doing a great job in bringing many of these quillers together. It's called the Creative Quilling Forum, and has a rapidly growing membership - if you're interested in quilling, you really should be part of it!

The forum is a lively site where people share ideas and display their work. There's an active 'general chit chat' section where all manner of quilling-related topics are discussed, plus tips and advice, shared patterns, tutorials, news of events and workshops - and much more besides! There's a gallery containing photos of members' quilling work, and voting is currently taking place on work submitted last month to a members' challenge. The quality of work is extremely high.

Do visit, and consider joining (if you have not already done so). You'll find the forum at: http://creativequilling.forumotion.com

Sunday 1 August 2010

Quilled anniversaries: silver and gold

People are always asking for anniversary cards at our Friday market, so I thought I'd try creating some new designs for the Silver (25 years) and Golden (50 years) ones.

Instead of the usual rolled and flared roses, I've used 'art deco' style ones which I think are quite striking. These are made by gluing two contrasting strips together at one end and folding rather than rolling them into a coil. When you release the coil, you get this interesting shape which shows both colours really well.

I decided to work hearts into the design, too, and the green leaves on the Golden Wedding card were made with crimped strips.

Now let's see if they sell ...?!!


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