What is this blog?

This blog is about my crafts as I'm sure it's obvious, but rather specifically I post about my quilling. I suppose I didn't include quilling in the title simply because that would limit what I could put in this blog. In other words, 99% of this is in fact quilling.

There ARE periods where I don't post anything for a long time, but that doesn't mean I'm done with quilling! I'll post again. Eventually.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

DIY medicine bobby pin container

Hey everyone! Is anyone else obsessed with Pinterest? I've always been a crafty gal. You probably already know that though! Usually I use quilling as my creative outlet. But looking at Pinterest... There are so many other ideas for things that are useful! 

I have a lot of bobby pins. Like, A LOT. I have to put my hair up for work, and I usually use two to put my hair up since my hair is short. Technically it's the summer and it's long right now for ponytails, but the point is I use lots of bobby pins. It's so easy to lose them, right? 

Well, when I was cleaning up the cabinet, I thought to put some bobby pins in an old medicine container. It's free and it works. It isn't pretty. So looking on Pinterest got me inspired to morph my container into a cuter holder :). Not sure what else it could be good for, any suggestions?

Objects needed:

-scissors and preferably a razor cutter.
-scrapbook/printed paper
-doubtless sided tape or photo slits
-old medicine container (preferably the kind you push down on the side instead of the top. You couldn't put anything on top if that was the case, and it's harder to open).
-findings/quilling do-dad

This is pretty straight forward. First you measure how tall the medicine container is. Mine was about seven centimeters. Then mark that length on the paper and cut it nice and straight.

Start putting on the tape or photo slits. I started with just a few slits and started to put it on the container so that I know it's straight. Then keep adding them until you get to the opening part thing jutting out. You just cut down a little bit on each side of the paper between the thing (what is that even called?). Fold it a bit so it's easier to cut, and snip it off. Finish taping the paper on.

Then take off the lid and trace it on your paper. I chose a different paper, but if you put something on it, I guess that isn't necessary.

Cut it out, and Use more tape or photo slits to put it on the top. Mine isn't perfect, but that's not such a big deal.

Now you can be done if you want. It's looking cuter already! 

I have an amazing amount of crafty things, so I found a few things to put on the top. You wouldn't want it on its sides since you have to hold onto the side to open it. But not the top. I found some flowers and cord. I have a sticker maker which was a good adhesive for the cord around the top. You probably don't have that, in which case hot glue, done carefully, would probably work as well.

I used more photo slits to adhere the flowers on the top. You could quill something for the top if you'd like. 1/16 inch strips would probably look best (I usually just cut strips in half with precision scissors instead of buying narrow strips). Or maybe you're crafty in some other way. Anything would look cool on the top :).

If anyone does this, I'd like to see what you've created :).

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Half day, half night picture painting

Hey everyone, I know it looks like I've already finished my next quilled picture. That isn't really the case. I finished this a few months ago. I found it when I was looking through my ipad pictures. I took a picture of it before I gave it to my uncle for his birthday (he was practically begging me to quill him something, ha ha! That's why I never took any close-ups.

I seem to be in a tree/ sunset, sky rut. My first one was a sunset tree, then a sunset, half and half, now another tree, half day half night. I guess I have a thing for sunsets and trees, and half and half stuff...

I had fun making the grass at the bottom. Some clearly look like grass, others blend in with the background. The branches are mainly folded strips. And the leaves are a mere inch coils...I wouldn't recommend doing that though, the tree took so so long. My favorite part is the moon. I like how lighter blue than the rest of the top surrounds it :).

Quilling picture tutorial/tips

EDIT: I've been writing up this tutorial for a while, after I finished my 'first' completely quilled picture, that abstract tree sunset one (in picture). So some things I say in here are slightly different from how I've recently tweaked my method. I left most of it as is and added a few things, near the end under tips I will discuss more tips I've recently figured out :).

(Recap) I will be discussing this quilled picture most of the time when I discuss what I've done :).

I know that this looks overwhelming. There are so many coils in this, how on earth could you do it? I won't lie, it took forever. But overall, it wasn't too difficult at all. I have searched for quilling pictures on the internet, and I saw few like this one that could be a painting, that has a full background. I remember two notable exceptions. I would love to see more quilling pictures like this, and I would like to offer a few tips.

While something like this does take forever, if you print out a reasonably easy picture (one with limited tiny details, though some are okay, like the tiny circles on my quilled picture).

How to quill a picture (with separate tips to follow). Some of these steps and hints are meant for beginners, I don't mean to insult anyone's intelligence, I'm just covering all the bases.

1. Find/buy/make a frame. This is an important step, because you want to ensure your picture will be the ideal size. It has to be smaller than what the frame claims to be. Measure how much the sides will cut off, and how big the picture can be to be seen. Maybe cut off a quarter of an inch or centimeter to the visible area on each side to ensure it the right size. I suggest buying a shadow box. You could either buy a regular frame and take off the glass (which I don't prefer since your picture won't be protected), or find some other specialty frame without depth. I haven't found any, but I've read about a few.

2. Find a picture on the internet and print it out. If you're a good drawer, you could even draw something. I would suggest colored pencils or crayons and shade it so you know exactly what strips you need and where each strip goes. It's a good idea to know how you are going to quill it before you start.
      -something abstract or uncomplicated is best. Don't pick something with too small of details, 
      because you need to be able to quill each part. Or, just simplify parts that look too small.
3. Get your strips/order more
       You don't want to be too far into your project and realize that you are out of strips in a certain color!  With quilling, it's something you have to order and isn't really at a craft store, as experienced quillers know (just some multi colored packs). I suggest using as many different shades of strips as possible. It's what makes it look the most interesting. Is your picture mostly blue or green? Go mad on ordering the most shades of each color as possible. Maybe five shades or something? They aren't that expensive per pack anyway.
      -I prefer buying a bunch of single colors instead of shade packs (which is better than multicolor packs, since they have more colors of that particular color), because sometimes there are colors you don't use as often, then you could end up with a bunch of extra color you don't use much. It's worth the extra expense of single color packs for nice storage, and to get the most colors possible. Plus, you get more for your money.
4. Get some cork board and put some some wax paper on the print out on the cork. Get pins, strips, glue, toothpicks (or a glue bottle with a fine tip, which is easiest for me), ruler (you may need scissors, but for 3 mm strips I just rip them personally).
5. Decide on quilled shapes/size.
      I used different shapes everywhere to completely fill in each crack, but that isn't totally necessary. Tear drops are good for leaves, long rectangles for trees, maybe ovals for clouds? That's what's cool about quilling, you have an option of shaping each shape which is unique to the craft, giving it a different feeling. I suggest using as small coils as comfortably possible. I used three inches, though some of the circles are only half inch coils. Maybe some detailed coils you could stand making smaller like two inches? The smaller the coils, the better.
6. Start quilling!

-I highly discourage the use of a slotted tool, at least, the crimp in the middle doesn't always look good. You could use a needle tool, but I never understood them lol.
      -instead, run your thumb along a strips a few times and roll with your fingers make the    inside as tiny as possible. The smaller the coil, the more important that is.
-if you have a really small, skinny area on your picture (like the branches on my picture), there are two ways you could do this, depending on how thick it is. First, finish your coils on one side of the small branch/ whatever it is. You can either:
   -set the strip alongside your coils, and mark with your finger where it ends. Start folding it a few times to your desired thickness. Really thin ones I folded twice, the thicker ones three or four times.
   -for slightly thicker areas, you can just loosely roll your coil so there's lots of space. Then, fold your coil. See how big it is compared to how big the area it is your coil needs to fill. Fix the coil as necessary.
**New tips I've developed from my half sunset/half night picture**

My first picture didn't involved much blending. Because of this, I just had to figure out how I wanted to blend some things.

-Some pictures don't need to be blended as much as others. In a sunset, it's quite pertinent to the overall look.
   -It may be obvious by looking at it, but the best way to blend is to buy as much different shades of a color as possible. Unfortunately, it's not possible to blend seamlessly. The best thing to do is start with all of one shade. Then, slowly start to add some coils of the darker/lighter color. Start with just a few here and there, then add more until it's completely in. It's best to add some of slightly different shades even in areas that are supposed to be the same color so that it adds interest and breaks up the single color (like, I added some orange into the red way before I changed the color to a brighter orange/yellow color).
-Sizes of coils:
   -it's best, I think, for most coils to be the same size throughout your picture. This rule can and should be broken sometimes, however. In my picture all coils are three inches, but the tree ones are two inches. I figured it would look better for my tree to have smaller coils since I think it requires more detail. Maybe you want something to stand out on your picture. This is another good time to add in some smaller coils. If there are little 'filler' areas this is another fine time to add in smaller coils. Like some of the tiny coils in between the tree here.

*What to do while you quill?*

    -Pictures like this I really like because it doesn't require as much of your attention as quilling flowers might. Just glue each coil on and pin it. Easy as that! You could even watch netflix or listen to a book tape (I've been listening to book tapes with my half sunset/half night quilled picture. I really enjoy it as my brain is free to listen, while my hands are busy) or something. I went crazy watching lots of dr. Who while making that quilled picture. It's best to have the movie close to you so it's easy to watch and quill. I watched netflix on my tablet, maybe you have a laptop, or you could find a close seat to the tv. Or maybe you want no stimulation at all! Whatever floats your boat.

Any questions are welcomed ^_^.

**I am currently working on a very intricate quilled picture where I will be adding in more tips. So be on the lookout for that. This post will be updated around then, most likely.**

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Abstract half sunset half night picture

Hey everyone! Finally back with another quilled picture. This time I wanted to quill my mom something. It's in a pretty small frame, 6 by 6", so it couldn't be too complicated. We finally agreed on a sunset. It was hard to find the right picture, but luckily I found a good one. I made it abstract as well to go with my style! I had a lot of fun 'blending' with the coils. Luckily I have lots of different shades. Like a freaking crapload. So that was no problem!  Each coil is three inches, aside from the coils that make up the tree which are two inches. Three inches is the perfect size for me. Good enough to blend and make it detailed, but not too small.

If anyone has any questions on how to make something like this or anything, don't be afraid to ask. Or maybe you should, maybe I'm secretly a terrorist trying to wreak havoc on your mind by hiding subliminal messages into my quilled pieces.