Quilling, or paper filigree as it is sometimes called, is the art of creating intricate shapes from strips of paper. The technique is simple: After a long, narrow ribbon of paper is rolled around a needlelike tool, the strip is slipped off, arranged with your fingertips into the desired shape, and then glued to a background of contrasting paper, fabric, or wood.
To learn the art, follow these instructions and try some of our projects. You can get started with just precut quilling paper, a slotted quilling tool, tweezers, small sharp scissors, craft glue, and an opaque pen (all available at crafts stores). Use a round-headed pin as a handy glue applicator. Practice a little and daydream about your valentine. You'll be creating tiny treasures in a heartbeat.