Irresistible Quilling by Carolyn Edge

Every now and then a paper artist comes to my attention not only because I'm drawn in by their creations, but also because of the ways they're managing to be noticed. After all, the art marketplace is a crowded one and the ability to stand out is what can make or break the launch of an artistic business. Carolyn Edge of The Quilling Edge is one quiller who is meeting with success. 


hand holding colorful quilled word yes surrounded by festive on-edge paper stars, squiggles, and dots


First off, she very luckily has the last name Edge... I mean how perfect is that for a quiller who excels at creating designs in the popular on-edge style? Also, due to the inclusion of a quilled curse word here and there, some of Carolyn's most noticed pieces have an undeniable edgy vibe.


 quilled on-edge design in shades of yellow, blue, and orange (detail)

She makes no apologies (nor does she need to) and explains her work this way: "In my slightly "edgier" pieces, I strive to say that even in life's tougher moments, beauty can shine through. Often we want to hide or stifle the negative areas of life. But I believe that when we fully embrace whatever life throws at us, and integrate it with art, we can find healing by holding all parts of our experience in power."  
 quilled heart in shades of blue and purple

I first became aware of Carolyn when she shared her procedure for photographing art in response to a question that was posted to a quilling Facebook group... she was generous, thorough, and obviously a practiced teacher, as well as what I would call a quilling natural regarding both design ability and attention to detail.
on-edge white letter A outline surrounded by colorful quilled floral design 
The backstory: Carolyn was introduced to quilling via a craft workshop at her local library in Austin, Texas, and like many quillers, was hooked immediately. 
"I got a kit for myself and started creating. It took several projects before I felt like I had a grasp on it, but things really changed when I learned to cut my own paper and use the needle tool rather than the slotted tool. I was inspired by other artists I'd seen with really big, bold designs, seeing that their paper was cut to a bigger width. I was also inspired by some old maps I'd found, with the idea to cut them up and quill with them. I had just gotten a Silhouette Cameo so the timing was perfect."
quilled California outline with coils filling interior and made of map paper strips


After sharing a project or two to a couple of Facebook craft groups in 2019 that attracted a tremendous amount of interest and requests to purchase, she realized she was onto something. Requests to create custom art for individuals and companies were arriving in her inbox with regularity.


wine bottle placed on table next to cork board onto which black paper cursive lettering winery name has been glued

At the time, Carolyn, who has a degree in acting from the University of Oklahoma, was working with youth in arts-based programming that involved theatre, film, and visual art, but was ready for a career change. 


greeting card featuring floral heart shape containing on-edge paper word, Mom


By early 2020 she had made the decision to put all of her energy into a quilling business. Then the pandemic struck which provided time at home to set up shop, create new designs, and grow a social media following. It and word of mouth have expanded The Quilling Edge quickly. 


Carolyn then discovered she loves creating reels and short form videos as much as quilling, and has had the good fortune to see a couple go viral on TikTok, resulting in order landslides.


quilled on-edge motorcycle design


"Like many others who found themselves working remotely in the past couple of years, my partner Hayden and I realized we could be mobile while doing what we love."


paper quilling scroll design (detail) in shades of blue and green


We bought a camper, sold just about everything we own, and have been traveling full time since the summer of 2021. We're currently in Tennessee, and next up we're planning on heading toward Michigan, then west to spend the summer in Montana."

 smiling woman holding quilled, framed log of orange fruit with two leaves with ampersand inside orange alongside store window showing neon logo


Here's Carolyn showing a commissioned studio sign she quilled for Citrus & Cane, a soy candle and organic/vegan body products company in Mobile, Alabama. She recently delivered it in person... a benefit of living on the road! 


Easter will be here soon... enjoy Carolyn's quilled egg tutorial.


Visit The Quilling Edge. Carolyn Edge is on Instagram, TikTok and has a YouTube channel.


smiling woman seated at table with quilled instrument project in progress


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Ann Martin
Ann Martin

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