Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Quilling Strips - Should I Cut My Own Strips?

Quilling Strips - Should I Cut My Own Strips?

So many people ask about quilling strips and if they should cut their own papers. This is such a personal choice, but I will provide some information for those of you who decide to cut your own paper.

For those of you brave enough to cut your own paper here is some information that may help you when selecting the paper. Not to be cheeky, but you don’t want your paper to be too thick or too light. If it is too thick or heavy it is harder to roll, and if it is too light it will not keep the coil shape as well. A good weight that has been recommended to me is the 65 to 80 pound text paper. I have used the better quality printer paper and the light weight scrapbook paper that is available. I know that many of my quilling friends like to use envelopes as this is generally a good weight and has the advantage of recycling the mail. Included in this is the inside of the business envelopes - the pattern on the paper makes for really neat fringed flowers.

You want to make sure that the paper you are using has a good “color fastness” The best way I can explain this is that you do not want your paper to “bleed” when you glue it as this can damage or ruin your project. The bleeding can happen because the glue contains water that can cause the bleeding. Always test any paper you want to use before you get too far into your project, you would hate to ruin all that hard work.

Some people will use a manual paper cutter and use the ruler as a guide for the thickness of the paper strip. You must be very careful to keep the paper from moving while cutting so that it is the same width along the length of the strip.

There are those who will use a shredder to cut their paper instead of manually using a paper cutter to cut their strips. There are many shredders that cut paper into 1/8” strips. A word of caution, you need to be careful with the shredders, because many cut with jagged edges that are not the best for use with quilling. If you decide to attempt this, please test the shredder in the store before purchasing it to make sure it is what you need.

The advantage of cutting your own paper is that you can more easily match the color of your pattern to the background paper you are using on your project. This can be helpful for scrapbooking or for card making where you can use your scraps to create the embellishments or decoration.

The disadvantage is that it can be difficult to get all your strips the same width and if you are like me, cutting a straight line can be challenging – lol.

I have found that many people who teach classes cut their own paper for their students to use when first learning the basic shapes. This is done so that they do not use the real strips until they feel more comfortable with making the shapes. There has been a lot of information posted about shredders, if there is interest I can track it down for you.

As a side note: I prefer to buy my paper. I don’t have the time to cut it myself, and if I did, my ability to cut a straight line (even with a paper cutter) is not my forte. One exception, because there is always an exception, is when it comes to fringed flowers and some of the roses that I make. Some of the color variations in the scrapbook paper makes for great flowers!

I hope that you have found this helpful.

Copyright (personal use) by Antonella DeFalco

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Anonymous said...

You have an awesome blog Antonella!! What a great resource for quillers. Beautiful work!

Marilyn said...

I would like some information about a good shredder for quilling. I have been looking on the web and I haven't had much success.

Antonella said...

Colleen - thanks for your post.

Marilyn, I do not use a shredder - the advice I can give is what I have heard others give - test out the shredder before you buy it. Make sure it cuts strips and not short pieces.

Hugs, antonella :-)

Shubha said...

Hey Antonella.. u have an amazing blog dear and great resource for quillers...

Where do u get pre cut quilling strips? do u get it in craft shops??
Can i use contrction paper to make strips..


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