Archive for the ‘calligraphy’ Category

The Ultimate Calligraphy Gift Guide

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As Christmas is fast approaching (it’s likely too late for this guide, but I don’t care – I want to put this together anyway), I thought I would post the ultimate gift guide for calligraphers, beginners and calligraphy enthusiasts. I’m always scouring the web for interesting things, I may as well share with you my favorite items along with a few that are on my wishlist as well!

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For the beginning calligrapher:

For the intermediate/advanced calligrapher:

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BOOKS!!

Grow your library with these must-haves:

Art!

Everyone loves pretty letters. Grow your art collection from one of these fabulous artists:

Check out my pin board for more calligraphy-related giftable items.

*Affiliate links are used in this post. This doesn’t change the price of the product, it just gives me a small kick back. Each affiliate link is to a product I personally own and absolutely love.

Sponsored: 6+ Ways to Address an Envelope

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This post is sponsored by Tiny Prints. They provide excellent quality printing and amazing printing options to make your holiday cards stand out this year.

I’ve got 6+ easy ways to embellish your envelopes this year. Don’t get stuck with boring print labels or chicken scratch! Make your snail mail pop with a few tips that require little to no technique. :)

If you want to get some technique under your belt, check out 5 Easy Steps for Improving Your Handwriting, or take my calligraphy class!

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Getting fun snail mail is possibly one of my favorite aspects of this time of year. I love getting something other than business offers and bills! Colored envelopes will certainly help make those invites pop.

I went through Tiny Prints for my Christmas cards this year and got one of their laser-cut designs (See all of their offerings here). It’s unique, well designed and I didn’t have to spend a million hours getting it squared away. Major win! I’m dedicated to having enough time to enjoy the holidays this year. No chicken with her head cut off over here, please!

I’m incredibly partial to Kraft envelopes (greengrocer kraft is fabulous). They work well with both light and dark pens and they stand out in a pile of mail. The envelopes featured in this tutorial are from Tiny Prints. I’ve been incredibly impressed how well they handle ink and how easily I can write on them with my super sharp calligraphy nibs.

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Next up, gather all random scrapbook supplies you own. Heck, head over to Walmart and browse their crafty section. You’ll find some great stuff for next to nothing.

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To do the techniques seen above, you’ll want to collect a few things:

You’ll want a few different patterns of washi tape, and perhaps a few different widths, too. When in doubt, collect all the black, white, gold and silver washi tape you can get your hands on. It goes with practically everything and every season.

You can use any kind of pen for these techniques. I used dip pen and ink for many of these samples, but just use any kind of pen you have. Ballpoint pens, however? NO. Throw all of those out of your house right now. They’re terrible. Shame on you for having them around. :)

Learn how to use a pointed pen with my online calligraphy class: IStillLoveCalligraphy.com. I’m happy to teach you! Side note: our kit makes for the perfect gift. 

So let’s get going, shall we?

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When doing your addresses on a straight line, use the chalk pencil and the clear ruler to mark out those lines. Otherwise:

DECORATIVE GUIDELINES

Use washi tape as a decorative way to keep your lines straight.

Tape a vertical and horizontal strip and write in the bottom right section OR use it to slant your baseline. Layer multiple strips of tape for more depth.

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RANSOME NOTE

Use alphabet stickers to draw attention to different letters.

For a cursive style, use block letter stickers for the first letter of each name. For block style writing, replace a random letter with a sticker.

I found these stickers at Walmart for about $1-2 each. I’m sure you can find them at just about any craft supply store as well.

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AROUND AND AROUND

Use circular sticker labels (I used Avery 2 1/2″ labels) to structure your envelope’s layout.

Print or letter just the address within the label (this is great if you want a hand-lettered touch, but you have LOADS of addresses to do) and write the name outside the sticker.

In the top version, I used the border of the label as a baseline and wrote the name around the diameter. It looked a little empty so I drew a little holly berry illustration on there. You could draw something there, or keep it simple and stick the circle in the center of the envelope.

Wrap the label around the back and write the name on a large scale all the way across the envelope.

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GLITTER GLUE DETAILS

Glitter glue is my best friend. It’s all the sparkle of glitter without the mess of loose glitter everywhere (I swear that stuff multiplies). My favorite brand is Stickles. Sparkliest of them all.

Pipe out a wavy line in glitter glue. Use that line as your guide for the baseline of the recipient’s name.

Or Letter out your address and use glitter glue to add accents on hairlines and at the terminals of each line.

 

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LARGE-SCALE NAME

Grab a marker and go to town! Write out the first name as large as the envelope will allow. Cursive styles work best. I used a Tombow dual brush marker here. You can use a casual, grungy style nicely. Then letter the rest of the address in a normal style, save for the ZIP. Make the ZIP huge.

ADD SOME BLING

Letter the address as you would prefer then stick some rhinestones on it. Yup. Simple. But it’s so fun go get in the mail! I like to use PVA glue to fasten them on. It’s a strong glue that dries clear.

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I hope you have some fun sending out mail this year!

*This DIY is free for personal use and should not be distributed/republished without my consent. Altering any files is NOT ALLOWED. If you would like to use this freebie for commercial purposes, please email me. Thanks!

Very Thanksgiving Giveaway

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I hope y’all are having a fabulous Thanksgiving! There are so many things I’m thankful for. I would be writing it all down for the rest of my life, the list is so long.

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To celebrate this glorious day, I’m hosting a giveaway on Instagram.

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I’m giving away a calligraphy kit and subscription, a hand-turned holder from Salvador Mendez, Clairefontaine paper, glitter glue, an assortment of vintage nibs and a set of 5 hand-calligraphed thank you cards along with matching envelopes. Value: over $230!

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Winner will be chosen after 9 AM MST on Friday, November 28th, 2014. Head over to Instagram  (@melissapher) to enter for your chance to win! 

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Printable: 2014 Thank You Cards

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2013 Thank You Printable2012 Thank You PrintableFloral Thank You Printable2011 Thank You PrintableDino Party SuiteStyled. Party Suite2010 Thank You Printable • 2009 Thank You Printable

It’s that time of year again! Here’s another ‘Thank You’ card printable. I had a lot of fun with this one. I love the idea of making a wheat-inspired bouquet. Kind of reminds me of the fall harvest. Very indicative of the time of year around here.

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I’ve been making lots of ‘Thank You’ cards for family and friends lately (so many things to thank them for!), so I thought I would make a printable that was in-line with the off-hand flourishes that I’ve been making lately.

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The printable is a simple double-sided post card design that could be sent as a post card, or printed single-sided and used with an envelope for more formal sentiments.

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I kept the design simple with just black and white line work. Embellish with sparkly pens, colored pencil, markers and more! Print out a bunch and let kids color and decorate at the Thanksgiving table! A great Thanksgiving-themed activity, if you ask me.

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Click the button below to download.

 

*This tutorial/freebie is free for personal use and should not be distributed/republished without my consent. Altering any files is NOT ALLOWED. If you would like to use this freebie for commercial purposes, please email me. Thanks!

Halloween Part II: Pic-Or-Treat

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We bought a photobooth. It’s possibly one of the more exciting things we’ve purchased to date. More details forthcoming.

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So to test out the booth, I decided that we would open our home to the neighborhood trick-or-treaters to something a little different: Pic-Or-Treat. I have every intention to make this an annual thing at our house. Kids could choose a treat or a pic. We had lots of fun seeing all the costumes and getting the parents involved in the whole thing.

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Please ignore the fact that I wrote the ‘A’ backwards!

My favorite part: knowing that I could give our neighborhood parents something priceless: great photos of them with their kids on Halloween. It’s not often that I get to get in on a photo with my kids. And I have all sorts of photo equipment set up that would allow me to do so! Being able to give kids (especially those with food allergies) and their parents something to cherish was such a thrill. It was a great success, too! The little kids loved it. The teens? Oh!! The teens LOVED it.  

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As far as the nuts and bolts of it went, I set up a backdrop with a black sheet, then taped sliver and black fringe in front. I also lettered out some little signs and props for those without costumes to use in the photos as well. The whole thing came together rather quickly and made a huge impact on those who came to our door.

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Felix isn’t one to get in on the photo thing much, but he was so enthusiastic about getting in on the fun. Even though we didn’t end up taking him trick-0r-treating, he had a lot of fun entertaining all the kids that came through the door. He also had his fair share of fun eating tasty treats (as you can see from the above photo).

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If you’re looking to rent a photobooth like this for a future event, feel free to get in touch!

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