Quilling Circle Templates Boards - How to Use and Common Problems

Quilling Circle Templates Boards - How to Use and Common Problems

Comparisons, How to Use, and Tips for Common Challenges

Do you struggle with making consistent basic quilling shapes using a circle template board? 

In my latest quilling tutorial, I’ll show you a couple of circle template boards that cost $10 and $2, and talk about the pros and cons of each. 

Learn how to use a circle template board for basic quilling shapes, such as regular coils, eccentric or off center coils, and teardrop shapes.

Avoid common problems beginner quillers face when they’re making these basic shapes, including tension, different types of quilling tools, and varying weights of quilling paper.

In all my tutorials, I share the knowledge I’ve gained since I started quilling in 2006, but I don’t have all the answers. So if you have a great tip or technique to share, please let us know in the comments below so we can all learn and improve, including me!

Watch the tutorial video here


Types of Quilling Circle Template Boards

The two circle templates in my craft room that I use for quilling are from Quilled Creations and a local dollar store. Here are some pros and cons of each:


Quilling Circle Template Board by Quilled Creations

Quilling Circle Template Board from Quilled Creations: cost $10 US




  • Quilling Circle Template Board from Quilled Creations has multiple circles of same size, so it lets you make 6 of the same size coils, ideal for quilling snowflake projects
  • large work surface on the back made of cork
  • the dashes link the circles visually so you don’t get them mixed up
  • packaging shows a suggested quilling paper strip length (see the Amazon photo 4)

    Circle Size

    Length of Paper (inch)


    Size 0

    16” and over

    45 cm and over

    Size 1

    16” and over

    45 cm and over

    Size 2

    12”  to 16”

    30 to 45 cm

    Size 3

    8” to 10”

    20 to 25 cm

    Size 4


    20 cm

    Size 5


    15 cm

    Size 6


    10 cm




  • the plastic on top of the cork is thin, so my coils can spring out if I accidentally touch it the wrong way
  • can’t make incremental circles if needed
  • the difference between the two largest circles is quite a large jump in size, I find myself wishing for more sizes
  • numbers are not a unit of measure and do not indicate circumference
  • glue can get stuck to the cork because you can’t wrap in plastic
Circle Template from Dollar Store

Plastic Circle Template from Dollar Store: cost $2


  • inexpensive
  • numerous incremental circles
  • numbers indicate a circumference, which is needed for designing quilling patterns
  • I can use with/without a cork board underneath
  • I can protect my cork with a sheet of plastic wrap
  • I can raise the template up from my surface using foam squares, to help my coils stay in place


  • I didn't need all the increments, so it's kind of too many increments
  • had to guess at the length of quilling paper needed to fill a circle
  • no circles are the same size, so I can’t do multiple circles as easily
  • foam squares underneath makes the template bouncy if pressed from above
  • dashes indicate the circle's center – not needed for quilling
How to Use Quilling Circle Template Boards

How to Use Quilling Circle Template Boards

1. How to Make Closed Coils

  • After coiling a strip with either a slotted or needle tool, push it off your tool – never pull or you risk making a tornado. 
  • Place the coil in the circle template and allow it to uncoil. Ideally, the coils should be evenly spaced and the outer ring has unwound far enough to fill the circle. 
  • Use tweezers to pick up the outer rings, near the end, to keep the coil cinched. If you use fingers to pick it up, the coil has a greater chance of slipping, which ruins the circumference of the coil.
  • Dab a small amount of glue on the end and glue the end down, closing the coil. I love using my Fine Tip Glue Bottle filled with Aleene's Tacky Glue, but you can also use a toothpick instead.


2. How to Make Eccentric Coils or Off Center Coils

  • After making a Closed Coil (see above), look where the end is located on the outermost coil.
  • Use a pin to push the innermost coil in the opposite direction of the end, and pin it to your cork board.
  • Dab some glue across the top of the touching paper coils, smear it flat, and allow to dry.
  • Lay a finger across the coils as you remove the pin, to ensure the coils are not damaged in case it's stuck to the pin.
  • When gluing to your quilling project, ensure the glued side faces down and the pretty side faces up.

3. How to Make Teardrop Shapes

  • After making a Closed Coil (see above), look where the end is located on the outermost coil.
  • Use a needle to push the innermost coil in the opposite direction of the end.
  • If needed, adjust the coils to ensure they're evenly space, using a pair of tweezers
  • Pinch the coil, where the end is located (to minimize its visibility), and allow the coils to relax into a teardrop shape.
How to Use Quilling Circle Template Boards - Tension

Common Problems & Challenges with Using Quilling Circle Template Boards

1. Tension

  • If the coil doesn't unwind to the edges of the circle, your tension might be too tight. You can fix this by unwinding and rewinding by hand.
  • If the coil unwinds and the outer rings and doubled up, your tension might be too loose. You can fix this by unwinding and rewinding by hand.
  • If your disc is uneven before placing within the template, I try to flatten it with my fingers to ensure you don’t have a tornado
  • After pushing my coil off a slotted tool, I hold it for a second, then place it in the template – I have found that often helps my coil unwind with more consistently spaced coils
  • If you leave the coil in the template for a long time, it could continue to unwind and you may lose the even coils.

2. Tools

3. Paper

  • A coil made with a thicker weight of paper (ex: Canson Mi-Teintes) will look different than a coil made with conventional quilling paper, even if they are the same length. There is no right or wrong – it just depends on what kind of look the quiller is aiming for.
  • Metallic Paper: I find the coating on metallic paper prevents the glue from adhering quickly, so I let the coil stay in the template until the glue has fully set. To glue a metallic coil, pick up a little glue with a needle tool. Look at the direction you picked up the glue. See how some glue coats just one side? Use the clear side to push the coil aside, slide the glue off, and let the coil spring back. Use tweezers to unwind the coil fully against the template.


How would you design your ideal Circle Template Board for quilling?

After making this tutorial, I started asking myself, "What would I do, if I could design my own circle template?" Making quilling patterns is like making a new cookie recipe – I have to write down how I made each element or else it won’t turn out exactly the same. I wish the current options for circle templates provided better numbers for quillers, noting both circumference and length of paper strip needed.

If you could design the ultimate circle template, what would you want it to look like? Let me know in the comments below. Thanks for watching and see you next time!

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