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35 mins

Mini quilled cactus for those with less than a green thumb
Customizable tiny paper cacti with flowers and spikes

Posted by Meredith A. Published See Meredith A.'s 7 projects »

  • Step 1

    Start with the main body of each cactus.

    Roll a tight coil from 3 connected strips, each 22″ long. Repeat to make a second coil.

  • Step 2

    Mold by pushing the center of each coil until a dome is formed.

    Your fingertips or the rounded end of your quilling tool work just fine for this. But, I’ve recently gotten a quilling mold and I’m really loving it for my 3-d projects. The domes are a lot more even.

  • Step 3

    I did find that the cacti looked a bit more natural if one of the domes was pushed a little further than the other.

  • Step 4

    To set your dome, apply a small amount of glue to the underside, and brush so the entire surface is covered.

  • Step 5

    Glue the two halves together.

    I also like to add a short strip of green right to the center of the dome to cover the seam where the two halves meet.

  • Step 6

    Of course, your quilling paper cactus needs a pot to grow in!
    Start with a tight coil of 3 22″ brown paper strips, made the same way as the green.

    This time instead of molding a full dome shape, gently push only the center of the coil. The very outer edge should stay together, so it looks like the lip of a terracotta flower pot.

    Lightly press the bottom of your pot against a level surface to allow your pot to sit flat.

  • Step 7

    I wanted my cactus to sit up a bit in the pot, as if it was really planted. A balled-up bit of brown Kraft paper did the trick.

  • How to make a paper model. Quilling Paper Cactus - Step 8
    Step 8

    Cut 1″ strips of white quilling paper in half (watch those fingers!) and roll into a tight coil.

    Once they’re rolled, press firmly to flatten.

  • Step 9

    Add your spikes to your cactus!

    I highly recommend getting some Tacky Glue for projects like this. Tacky Glue sticks paper together almost instantly but still moves a bit. Trust me, you don’t want to have to wait 10 minutes holding each spike as it dries.

  • How to make a paper model. Quilling Paper Cactus - Step 10
    Step 10

    Have some fun figuring out different ways to make cacti!

    Some have random spikes; others have spikes in rows.

    I made a few with simple flowers on top, too!

    I did make one with arms on the sides that I made from long, bent 3D coils.

    I only recommend this to those quillers with lots of supplies and patience! It’s a little tricky to get the tubes to bend without completely unraveling.

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