Pointed Pen Explorations Workshop

A couple of weekends ago I had the pleasure of teaching for Kaligrafos, the calligraphy guild in Dallas. What a great group of people!  It was a wonderful experience
and I enjoyed nearly every minute of my stay (except for the part where I hurt my toe – but it’s almost better
now {yay!}).

Anyway, Debi Sementelli was my hostess with the mostest and, if you don’t already know, she’s the artist behind the terrific Belluccia font.  Outside of class, we had a great time talking about lettering and fonts and as many other alphabetically related things as possible.

Debi was kind enough to write a lovely review of the workshop so if you have a minute, hop on over and read all about it!


Set-Up Fees for Calligraphy

While this may not be the sexiest post ever ; ) the topic of Set-Up Fees came up while I was recently in Dallas to teach a workshop (more on that to come, so stay tuned), and I thought that posting my list of what is included in my [relatively] small charge might be a good idea. Not only is it important for my clients to understand why the fee is requested, but I feel that it is necessary for calligraphers recognize as well.

When someone asks, “How much do you charge to address an envelope?” I respond with a price for lettering a simple script, in black ink on an envelope by Crane & Co., or equivalent, which is based on the time it takes to do the lettering, and I go on to add that a there is also a Set-Up Fee which helps defray the cost of other activities and supplies associated with addressing those envelopes.

Without further ado, here is my list….

Of course, there are additional charges for extra flourishing, lettering on difficult paper, mixing an “exact” ink colour, writing in gold or pastel inks, etc., etc., but again, all of these (and more) are based on the time it takes to do the work.

So, now you know!

Copperplate Calligraphy Class

This year began in a whirlwind! While my resolution to post more frequently was truly authentic, too many great projects got in the way, but I hope to rectify my neglect with the next few posts. ; )

March saw the end of a six-month Copperplate continued studies program in Murrieta, California. All I can say is how wonderful it was to have an opportunity to teach such a lovely group of wonderfully dedicated letter lovers.

Our first few classes began by going over the basic strokes and letterforms, with the rest of each day devoted to individual instruction from me and practice, practice, practice. The following classes saw more one-on-one attention and much practice, with definite improvement seen along the way.

Studio tips were offered throughout the time and included an opportunity to experiment with writing on black with gold and pastel colours, and writing using a phantom liner.

Finally, we explored how to make subtle changes to the look of the lettering while keeping true to the Copperplate style, and each student made their own small book with the various examples to use as a reference. To round it all off, the last two sessions extended the class in order to do some flourishing work. Phew!

And last but not least …. a heaping huge note of THANKS to Dots n Doodles for kindly sending some great samples of wonderful products to the students!

What a great experience I had with my first extended studies class … I certainly hope to have the occasion to do this again soon!

Valentine Calligraphy

Being one who works with calligraphy and design, pretty much day in and day out, one would think that I would produce the most gorgeous valentine for my love. However, I shamefully must admit that over the last few years I have been so busy that my wonderful husband has received a purchased card.

However, this year I broke out of the rut and made him a valentine! It is simple and sweet, so it was a surprise to realize that taking a photograph of three paper hearts suspended on golden thread is not as easy as I had imagined … and I certainly didn’t expect the drama involved of keeping still all those moving parts. ; )

So, whether you celebrate with your family, a loved one, or just do something loving for yourself, my wish is that you have a wonderful day!

Season’s Greetings

Once again this year I was delighted to be able to help with Assistance League© Glendale‘s annual “Festival of Trees” fundraising event by providing layout and design for the Save The Date, Invitation and Program. The fun part this year was that I was invited to create the artwork for the event! Apparently it was quite a hit so I have decided to share it by creating a few products in my Zazzle store (with a few more to come in the next few days).

Thank You to those who have been following my blog for the past couple of years. Hopefully next year I will be a bit more prolific in the posting department. ; )

Whatever you celebrate at this time of year I hope your festivities are warm and memorable, and your new year brings all the best things your heart desires!

Extended Copperplate Calligraphy Workshop

While attending and teaching at the IAMPETH Convention in Phoenix this past July, I had the pleasure of becoming better acquainted with a lovely gal that I only briefly met about a year or so ago. When we were not learning new stuff (or, in my case teaching or demonstrating some kind of technique), we enjoyed chatting about calligraphy and the other things we found to have in common. As a result of all of this, she asked me to teach Copperplate calligraphy to a group of pointed pen enthusiasts in Murrieta, California, and I was delighted to accept.

So, beginning this October, I will be teaching a 6-month Extended Studies Copperplate Workshop. Classes will be held on the second Sunday of each month, through March, and will be 8 hours of instruction. To be exact, the dates are Oct 9 – Nov 13 – Dec 11 – Jan 8 – Feb 12 – Mar 11.

There are 2 spots available and I would like to invite you to attend! It is intentionally a rather small group, so you will certainly get a lot of individual attention.

The focus of the class will be to learn and develop skill in the Copperplate hand, through instruction and lots of practice. Time will also be devoted to explore and experiment with various products and media, develop some small projects which will hone your newly-minted skills, and to learn some tricks of the trade using tools that just might surprise you! The last two classes will include instruction in flourishing and using it successfully.

If you’re interested, please contact Carol Landford and she will fill you in with all the details!

P.S. And, yes, the title for this post was hand calligraphed by yours truly. : )

A Designer’s Bible

OK, perhaps not exactly, but it should at least be on the short list of books in every designer’s library, and that of anyone engaging in the business of selling hand lettering or calligraphy — there’s a section in the book just for us!

What am I talking about? The Graphic Artist’s Guild Handbook of Pricing and Ethical Guidelines. It is helpful to have several of the past editions as well as the latest, as each of the books has different reference tables that I find extremely helpful when pricing, especially for commercial work. Make sure you get yours soon!

Crystal Harris and Hugh Hefner Wedding Calligraphy

So, now you know … my latest invitation project was this! It only took one or two samples to get the calligraphy style right and then it was on to the border to create the flourishing, something I had been wanting to try for a while so this was a perfect opportunity to see what would happen. My first glimpse of the invite came by way of a tweet by @hughhefner. Congratulations to the happy couple!


This past October I had the extreme pleasure of working with a bride on accessories for her wedding. As a matter of fact, Jen Lauren Grant is, herself, in the wedding industry, and is a photographer. Here are a couple of photos of the cards I did for her. Anyway, Jen’s photographic work is just beautiful and she has a lovely blog on which she wrote a very nice testimonial about me. Thanks, Jen!


Today my custom postage was featured in a post at Felt & Wire, Mohawk Paper’s blog, and penned (or, perhaps keyboarded) by writer extrordinaire, Alyson Kuhn, from whom I have reverently borrowed the title of this post. Take a look now, but be sure to also bookmark Felt & Wire, to make sure you can go back often to peruse the excellent content.

My appreciation extends to Alyson for today’s post, as well as the post she, a.k.a. AOK, wrote on Tuesday, Monograms à la modern, in which she discussed my monogram designs that I offer through the Felt & Wire Shop.

Those of you who have been reading my blog may already know that I have calligraphic Love postage stamps available for purchase in my Zazzle shop. And now, thanks to a lovely bride named Kendra, available in the shop as of this week, is an all-new Rsvp stamp, designed in calligraphy to coordinate nicely with the popular Love stamp.

Both the Love and Rsvp stamps are offered in a range of colours, but should you not readily see your scheme, they are customizable to those of your choice!