So I’m excited to share a little more about a new hobby I’ve been working on…calligraphy! My good friend is getting married next month and she asked me to address her invitations…I’ve always wanted to learn calligraphy but never had a reason to, I guess. This was a great excuse to learn and although I was nervous, I was also excited for the challenge. :)
I wasn’t sure what types of calligraphy pens to purchase. I went to Michael’s and probably stood in the aisle and reading product labels for 20 minutes, haha. I already had a beginner’s calligraphy kit at home (from my childhood!), but was worried the ink had dried out and I wanted to have options. After doing a little research, it turns out there are three types of calligraphy pens. If you’re hard-core, you might use a brush and quill. (Do people still do that?) There are also traditional dip pens (I used Speedball brand), or pens with ink cartridges. The easiest option would be to just purchase a felt pen with a calligraphy tip (Elegant Writer brand is common). I purchased all of the above, wanting to be prepared.
I spent lots of time googling tutorials and struggled to grasp the concepts. First, I began practicing the strokes and angle with the felt tip pen (like these), which helped a lot for practice. Then I tried the cartridge pens in the beginner set I had, only to decide I wanted the real deal. So, finally, I picked up the real ink and dip pen (using the smallest nib from this Speedball set). Once I got over the fear and tried experimenting, things really started flowing. (Sorry, couldn’t resist the pun.;)
It took time and after the 5th envelope (seriously), something clicked. Suddenly I was able to manage the pressure of the nib and control my ink flow the way I wanted, while creating smooth strokes. I found the process so completely relaxing and wonderful. I was at my friend’s house for a few days, and I honestly was so happy to wake up each day and work on calligraphy. I’ve always loved playing with handwriting and type, but calligraphy feels like a completely different world, one that very much excites me with all the possibilities.
Here are a few examples from the invitations I addressed… I don’t have any formal training and I guess I just tried to create my own simple style, so here’s how they turned out.
I already have so many ideas involving calligraphy and I’m trying to sort through them all! For now, I do know I want to keep learning. I’m excited to possibly get some more formal training and really develop my style. We’ll see!
Oh, and just for fun, below is a photo of part of their actual invite! Clearly that is legit calligraphy (printed – I did not write it!) and while I’m not at that skill level yet, I’d love to get there! :)
Hope you have a great start to your week!