Quilling 101: Summer Party Invitation

Summer is flying by way too fast to suit me, but there are still quite a few sunny August days ahead. Here's an idea for a quilled invitation to set the stage for a beach or pool party. It's an easy way to try your hand at making basic quilled teardrops that remind me of a seashell - and an addictive trick to keep older kids busy on a sultry afternoon. Just switch out the sentiment and it could be a birthday card, thank you, or whatever you like.

Quilled Card Tutorial

There’s no need to shop for special quilling supplies - any stiff wire or even a cocktail stick will be fine as a substitute tool. Practice rolling coils with narrow strips cut from ordinary computer paper. Once you've mastered the knack, use pearlized quilling paper to give your seashell-reminiscent coils a pretty shine.

Card Making Supplies:
Card stock - light blue, medium blue
Text weight paper - light blue
Paper cutter with scoring blade
Double-stick tape or glue stick - to adhere layers
Decorative edge scissors - waves or Victorian
Paper crimper
Sentiment rubber stamp set - Stampin' Up!
Black ink pad
Metal charms - shell and seahorse (mine were from Custom Quilling a while ago, but I've seen some on Etsy)

Quilling Supplies:
Pearlized quilling paper - 1/8 inch, aqua, light green, lavender (or cut strips from sheets of text weight pearlized paper)
Quilling tool - I used a needle tool, but a slotted tool works well too
Scissors - detail
Aleene's Tacky Glue - grips well on pearlized paper 
Paper piercing tool or cocktail stick - to apply glue to quilled coils
Plastic lid or waxed paper - to use as glue palette
Damp cloth - to keep fingers glue-free

More paper craft products I recommend can be found in my Amazon shop.

Quilled Card Tutorial
1. Cut an 8.5 x 5.5 inch piece of light blue card stock. Score at midpoint to make a top fold card.

2. Cut and crimp a 6 x 1 5/8 inch piece of medium blue card stock. Adhere to card and trim excess at ends with scissors.

3. Cut top and bottom edges of a 6-inch long rectangle of light blue, text weight paper with decorative scissors to measure about 5/8 inch wide. Adhere to center of crimped strip and trim ends.

4. Stamp sentiment on medium blue card stock. Cut a 2 1/4 x 1 inch rectangle, centering the words. Cut two light blue decorative edge strips and adhere to the long edges of rectangle back as pictured. Adhere to card.

5. Quilled shells:
Make three 16-inch curved teardrops and two 8-inch curved teardrops in varied colors of pearlized paper.

Quilling Tutorial

To make a curved teardrop, dampen fingers and place one end of paper strip across needle tool or substitute tool. Using the thumb and index finger of whichever hand feels most comfortable, roll paper around needle using even tension while holding the handle with your other hand. Be sure to roll the paper, not the tool.

Quilling Tutorial

When the strip end is reached, allow the coil to relax and slide it off the tool.

Quilling Tutorial

Pinch a point to create a teardrop. Trim excess paper at point and secure end with a small amount of glue, holding end in place for a moment to allow glue to set. Grasp point between thumb and index finger and push gently to one side to make a curved teardrop shape.

6. Spread a thin layer of glue on a non-stick surface. Holding curved teardrop with tweezers, lightly touch one side to glue, then place directly on card where desired. It's best to not slide quilling into position to avoid leaving a shiny snail trail. Glue the remaining curved teardrops in place.

7. Lastly, apply glue to metal charms and adhere them to card.

Quilled Card Tutorial

To mail your invitations, regular envelopes should be fine as long as you used sturdy card stock. If you're concerned your card will bend, slip a piece of lightweight cardboard behind it as support. Place a layer of bubble wrap over the quilling if you wish, but the densely rolled coils are surprisingly strong and should travel well. Check with your post office to determine if extra postage is required due to the weight of the charms.

This tutorial first appeared on The Paper, the blog of The Paper Mill Store.


A very nice contest [completed] is underway on The Paper Mill Store's Facebook page. Submit a photo of your summer-themed project that makes use of paper or card stock as your chance to win a generous gift certificate to use in their online store. Ends August 22, 2014.

Ann Martin
Ann Martin

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