Monday, September 14, 2015

Ideas for Quilling - Designs and Motifs of Ancient Mexico

Books on designs and motifs.
As I mentioned in my post "Ideas and Inspiration for New Quilling" one of my sources for new ideas are books with designs and motifs around a given theme.  My theme for today is "Ancient Mexico."  In this case the motifs are from the native cultures of that part of North America.

The classic calendar - I'd love to
quill it, but just haven't
quite figured out how, yet.
I lived for 14 years in southern Arizona, and came to appreciate and enjoy a lot of the native art from both that part of the US and of Mexico.  I've always wanted to spend some time quilling some related art of my own, but just haven't focused on it yet.  There always seems to be something more pressing.  Still, I have the books as well as so many pictures taken during those years, and so I can't say I don't have quite a bit of inspiration right at hand.

A smaller motif perfect for
a quilling project.
At first I was concerned that all the designs would be too difficult.  The initial designs I encountered were very complex - like the Aztec calendar.  I thought designs like this were amazing, but I didn't want to quite commit to figuring out how to quill a highly involved scene (at least back then).  But as I looked, I eventually started finding smaller motifs, and began to find a bit more practical inspiration.

These native motifs are not quite the same as say Celtic ones, where you have a lot of ready made knots and spirals right there to follow.  Instead, these designs have other elements, such as dots, feathers, and plenty of curving shapes.  They are really perfect for quilling, just in a different way.  I'm planning to quill the motif above.  I can envision places for fringe, feathers, long coils of paper, and more.  Now I just have to figure out what all the colors should be :)  And I'm not giving up on quilling the calendar.  Just ... maybe not right now.

Image Credit:  My pix from my books.  They are:  Ancient Mexican Designs by Gregory Mirow, and Design Motifs of Ancient Mexico by Dover Clip Art.


  1. I would love to see a quilled Mayan calendar, so cool.