For the uninitiated, quilling or paper filigree is a form of art used for making decorative designs. It entails rolling, looping, curling, twisting, shaping and glueing together of paper strips.
Back in the times of Renaissance, this art form was practised by the French and Italian nuns of those times for decorating book covers and other items. Later, this art form became a leisurely pastime for the royal ladies. The centuries-old quilling can be seen today on the boxes, baskets, etc. of those times.
In the present times, this art form is gaining in popularity, spearheaded by the likes of Ada, an artist and a resident of Bucharest, Romania. Having discovered this art form in 2011, she took it up, both as a hobby and a challenge. Today, she has surpassed many of her contemporaries in the beauty and originality of this art.
Says she, “…the evolution for me was like a ladder I had to climb with a step, through much, much work and especially patience.” Little wonder her quilling and paper art is making waves on the social media.
Ada has to her credit an exciting collection of designs that she uses to decorate greeting cards, pictures, boxes and eggs, as also to adorn jewellery, mobiles, models and the like. She also does not confine herself to paper, but also uses other materials too, like jute and wood.
Quilling process involves creating a coil by rolling a strip of paper and then shaping the coil into the desired shape. It is then glued in the same shape. Advanced techniques are also used to create 3D miniatures, quilled flowers, abstract art and the like.
Quilling not only requires special tools but special paper too. Tools for basic quilling include a slotted tool for making curling coils, needle tool for applying glue to otherwise inaccessible areas of the coil, tweezers for grasping delicate coils and preventing their uncurling, circle sizer ruler for sizing the coils after curling, curling coach for 3D miniatures and crimper tool for making crimped quilling strips.
As far as quilling paper is concerned, it is available in over 250 shades and several sizes. Its types include acid-free paper, used extensively in making picture frames, scrapbooks and rubber stamping graduated paper, ideal for making decorative quilling designs, two-tone paper with two different shades on either side, designed to give a lovely shade when curled into a coil.
Ada has made her presence felt on the social media and enjoys about 20,000 followers on Facebook and a significant presence on pinterest.com, among others.
Quilling By Ada