Instructions for Christmas Quilling

Written by suzie faloon
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Instructions for Christmas Quilling
Poinsettia flowers can be replicated with quilled paper pieces. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

A colourful array of Christmas items can be made from paper filigree or quilling kits and patterns. Thin pieces of paper are coiled and shaped into flat and three-dimensional ornaments and decorations. An experienced quilling artist or a novice can find very simple to highly detailed Christmas paper filigree crafts to make. Basic shapes are combined to make simple angels, poinsettia blossoms, a nativity scene or highly detailed snowflakes and multidimensional trees. Small items can be used to embellish gift tags, gift bags, tree ornaments and greeting cards. Poinsettias and candy canes can be quilled from inexpensive 1/4-inch wide paper strips.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Quilling tool or corsage pin
  • White craft glue
  • Toothpick
  • Beads

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    Coil or Round

  1. 1

    Select pre-cut quilling paper for your Christmas projects. Don't restrict yourself to red, green and white shades. Blue, yellow, pink, burgundy and gold are a few of the other colours you should have on hand for holiday projects. Quilling paper is sold in packages of single or multiple colours in 1/8, 1/4 and 3/8-inch wide strips that are 8 inches or 17 inches in length.

  2. 2

    Wrap the end of a piece of quilling paper tightly around the shaft of a corsage pin or set it into the slot of a quilling tool. Hold the paper and tool between your thumb and forefinger while coiling it tightly. Keep the layers of the coil even as you continue turning it.

  3. 3

    Turn the coil until it is at the size needed for the project. Each quilling pattern has specific sizes listed in the instructions. Quilling tools including a circle size ruler or template board are available to use as size guides for projects. Rip the excess paper away from the coil. Place a dot of glue on the end of the torn paper with a toothpick and smooth the paper against the coil.

  4. 4

    Place a piece of waxed paper onto your work surface. Set several red and white coils on to the waxed paper. Use a toothpick to place a dot of glue on the side of one white coil and set it against the side of a red coil. Glue coils together, side by side, in the shape of a candy cane on the waxed paper. Allow the candy cane to dry for at least an hour before gluing a ribbon or thread hanger loop to it.

  5. 5

    Make a tight coil. Slowly push upward on the coil centre with the rounded end of a sewing pin or ballpoint pen to create a bell shape. Brush glue inside of the bell with a toothpick to help solidify the shape. Glue two miniature bells onto a Christmas card or tag. Embellish further by gluing a bead at the opening at the bottom for a bell clapper.


  1. 1

    Make a coil shape on the quilling tool. Allow the coil to relax and unfurl slightly by releasing your hold on it. It will retain a loose, circular shape. Glue the torn end to the side of the coil. Pinch each end of the coil between your thumb and forefinger to form a point. This is the marquise or eye shape. The marquise shape is used for red and green poinsettia leaves, snowflakes, wreaths and angels.

  2. 2

    Set six red, pink or white marquise shapes onto a piece of waxed paper. Dot glue onto the sides of one pointed end of each marquise with a toothpick. Place the marquise points against one another to form a daisy-like flower shape. Make a second set of six marquise petals and adhere them into a flower shape.

  3. 3

    Dot glue onto the top of the centre of one set of petals. Pick up the second set of petal shapes and place them onto the first flower shape. Turn the second flower shape with your fingers until the bottom flower petals can be seen between the top flower petals. This gives the three-dimensional look of multilayered petals as seen on a poinsettia plant. Adhere two or three green marquise shapes at the sides of the flower shape for the green leaves.

  4. 4

    Make several tiny tight coils with yellow paper strips for the centre of the poinsettia flower. Glue the round coils onto the centre of the flower shape. The entire quilled poinsettia flower has a three-dimensional appearance.

  5. 5

    Glue the poinsettia flower to a clear glass ornament, gift tag or handmade greeting card.

Tips and warnings

  • Waxed paper is an asset when making quilled art work. You can place a pattern under the paper for a guide when assembling a Christmas decoration. The glued pieces will not stick to the waxed paper, which prevents damage to the finished item.
  • Wait for the glue to dry thoroughly on a quilled Christmas piece or it will fall apart if you try to move it.

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