Our philosophy that art has the power to make you feel good means that we try to reach as many people as we can to help boost their wellbeing. While we are closed to the public due to government advice, we're sharing loads of ways to stay creative at home.

"Art for Normals" blogs are aimed at everyone. We want you all to feel good with a bit of art. No artistic knowledge or, dare we say it, talent required!

Quilling is the technique of rolling paper to create imaginative 3D works of art. Follow this tutorial to learn the basics of quilling using equipment you’ll find around the house. Once you’ve got the basics of quilling, your imagination is the limit! 

Equipment needed 

  • Paper – a magazine is perfect, but it could be newspaper, or plain paper. Thinner paper works best. 
  • Glue stick or PVA glue 
  • Safety Pin 
  • Something to roll your paper around – a cocktail stick or a hair grip is perfect. 
  • Scissors 
  • Ruler 
  • Sellotape (optional) 

Let's get started.

1. Cut your paper into 1cm wide strips. Fold each strip in half so that the strips are 5mm wide. It depends how large and thick your paper is as to how many strips you will need. You might need to cut and fold more later, but start with about 5 strips and see how you get on. 

2. Take one of the folded strips and start to roll it up. Roll it very tightly so that there is no gap in the middle of your brooch. As you roll, add some glue along the back of the strip. It doesn’t matter if you don’t cover the whole strip in glue - it just helps hold the roll together and strengthen the brooch. Keep rolling until the end of the strip and add a dab of glue to the end to stick it down.

3. Stick some glue to the end of your next strip and continue rolling around the first. Keep adding strips until the disc is the size you would like. Make sure you keep the folded side of the strip facing upwards as you add more strips.

4. To make the curls around the edge, cut shorter lengths (about half length) of your folded strips. Roll them around something thin such as a cocktail stick or hair grip, but don't add glue.

5. Once you have rolled them around, let go and you will see the spiral spring out to create these curls.


6. Add a dab of glue and stick them to the edge of your rolled disc. You can make them all the same size, or different sizes. Both look attractive. 

7. Either use Sellotape, or a strip of paper and glue to attach your safety pin to the back of your brooch. 

Ta-dah! Have a go at experimenting with different quilling techniques. What happens if you pinch one side of your outer curls to make teardrop shapes? What about using different paper or colours to create different effects?