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Snowman Swirls Card

The technique of swirled paper, as with the snowman on the front of this handmade holiday card, is called "quilling."

Thought to be a favorite of Marie Antoinette's, this paper craft is performed simply by twirling strips of paper around a toothpick, needle or similar item. I think the real art of quilling lay in the way the paper coils are glued and assembled on the final product.


1 sheet black designer patterned cardstock (8 x 11 inches)
1 sheet silver and white scrapbook paper
Double-stick tape
White self-adhesive trim or ribbon
Paper trimmer (optional)
White paper
Black paper
White glue
Oval vellum tag
White letter stickers
Mini silver brad


Step 1: Fold black designer cardstock in half to make a card (Tip: Use a bone folder along the folded edge to make a nice flat crease). Note this card is in a "landscape" format and opens from the bottom up (refer to photo).

Step 2: Cut the silver and white scrapbook paper to fit the right half on the front of the card. Attach it to the front of the card with double-stick tape.

Step 3: Mask the seam where the 2 papers meet by applying a strip of white self-adhesive trim down the front of the card (refer to photo).

Step 4: Cut 1/4-inch wide strips of white paper to quill. You'll need 3 strips to make the snowman on the front of the card. Trim the strips to the lengths: 10 inches, 7 inches, and 4 inches. (Tip: Use a paper trimmer for super straight cuts).

Step 5: Fold the strips in half lengthwise making them 1/8-inch wide. Start with the 10-inch strip. Tape an end of the strip to a toothpick or your quilling tool and wind the strip into a tight coil. Remove the tape and loosen the coil a bit as you fashion the swirls into your desired pattern for the bottom circle of the snowman. Replicate what I've done in the photo or create your own pattern.

Step 6: Dip the tip of another toothpick in white glue and apply glue in between coils and on the ends of the strips to keep it all together. Use glue on the underside of the coil to attach it to the left side on the black paper on front of the card. Repeat the process with the other strips of paper using the 7-inch strip for the middle snowman circle and the 4-inch strip for the snowman's head.

Step 7: Cut a 1/4-inch wide strip of the black paper and fold it lengthwise to 1/8-inch wide. Fold the strip to form the outline of the snowman's top hat proportionate to his head (refer to the photo). Trim the ends of the black strip as necessary. Apply glue to the underside of the hat and attach it to the card on the snowman's head.

Step 8: Spell out "Snow" using letter stickers on the vellum tag. Attach the tag to the right half of the card on the silver and white paper by inserting a mini silver brad through the top of the tag (Tip: Use a tack to make a pilot hole through the paper layers).

Step 9: Bend back the prongs on the brad inside the card to secure.

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Meet our Writer
Jennifer Geddes
Celebrations Writer

Jennifer Kelly Geddes has hosted Christmas cookie swaps, New Year's open houses, Thanksgiving for 22, and all manner of dinner parties in her Manhattan and Ghent, NY homes.

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