SHARJAH 6 November 2017: With a lot of patience, imagination and consistency, Surya Bala, a ‘quilling’ enthusiast, is in the process of making the biggest paper quilled UAE flag to go on display to the public on the 2nd of December, UAE National Day.
Quilling, or paper filigree, is an art form that involves the use of strips of paper that are rolled, shaped, and glued together to create decorative designs. The 32 sq. m. (8mx4m) handmade flag is made up of 100,000 5mm thick coloured strips of paper, and uses 4 kg of glue.
Surya has already spent over 2,000 hours on this project. “I have been making this since November 2016 and had to plan the dimensions well as the flag is made up of 48 smaller sheets of different dimensions. I have been working for nearly 45 hours a week to complete the flag for more than 11 months now. The raw materials were brought from India and were customised for the requirements of the flag,” said Surya.
“I have completed 90 per cent of the project and once completed, it will be the largest paper quilled mosaic in the world. Guinness World Records has approved the idea and has issued certain guidelines for the display for record purposes,” she said.
“Currently, I am looking for a venue to display it, and I would like to put it up for auction in the future and donate the money to charitable organisations,” she added.
“I dedicate this handmade quilled flag for the people of this nation on December 2nd because I feel extremely lucky and fortunate to be in a country like UAE which cares for the peace, welfare and happiness of its residents. Today, I walk in streets at 1 am in Sharjah, alone with no fear, which by itself is an achievement for me. I owe a lot to this nation and I am extremely thankful for extending its warmth to people from all over the world,” said Surya, who has been living in the country for over a year.