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So you’d like to get started with calligraphy?

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I was well into my Arabic calligraphy journey when I came across Instagram videos on my explore page with all the flourishing glory of modern calligraphy. It’s safe to say I spent a good few hours scrolling Instagram watching every calligraphy video there was going for a few weeks, I was absolutely obsessed, I found the whole thing so therapeutic with the delicate lettering and all the flourishing. I had been doing Arabic calligraphy for about 5 years by then and although I quickly realised there wasn’t a big community of people in the UK offering modern calligraphy workshops at the time, I found a place that did and to my luck, it was local to me too! (The company has sadly shut up shop since). Unfortunately the workshops was completely booked out for months every time I checked in nevertheless I would set a weekly reminder (yes, really!) to refresh the workshop page to see if there had been any cancellations, an extra seat or anything new had come up until I FINALLY got a place in May 2017 which is when my Modern Calligraphy joinery started!

Now I remember how overwhelming it was when I first started out, with all the different size nibs and different penholders, oblique etc and how one of the first pieces of advice I was give, and I am now here to tell you – avoid the kits you can find in the big stores! Compiling your own kit is going to make it so much easier for you and last you a whole lot longer too. I wanted to write up this blogpost to point you in the right direction. I know when Lockdown 1.0 happened and I introduced starter kits they literally sold out in the first few days and I don’t have a team around me, so I didn’t restock, however with lockdown 3.0 with no end in sight (let’s not talk about all the rumours, I’m just sitting right now) if there were any of you still looking to get into calligraphy, here’s a little point in the right direction of the bits you’ll need; 

Speedball penholder – this universal penholder is easy grip, works for both left and right handed people and is made from plastic so easy to clean. It holds most types of nibs and it is still the one I use today. You can click on the link to purchase.

 

 

 

 

Nikko G Nib – the Japanese nib. My favourite, and again one that I use for all my projects to this day. I provide this as part of my kits for all my 1:1s and workshops and is included in my own starter kits. It’s super smooth and quite flexible and allows for fairly thick and quite thin lines. This nib is super inexpensive too. You can click on the named header for the link. Click here to purchase.

Lastly, ink. This one might depend on what you’re after, whether you’re choosing a certain colour palette or ink type – you’ll need to add ink to your starter kit order. My go-to to use for my workshops and my own work is the Winsor Newton black Indian ink. It’s fast drying and the pigmentation strength is opaque. Be careful though as once it stains, it’s  sticking around. Click here to purchase.

Now for super beginners and just getting the hang of things – this is all you’ll really need. However, some things you might want to pick up include coloured inks, Finetec palettes and the Rhodia pads. Remember to use smooth but slightly thicker paper for Modern calligraphy too for best effect. If you’re interested in a part 2 of this blog post where I can talk about the fancier materials, let me know by leaving a comment below.

Happy lettering!

BLACK FRIDAY – My Top Picks

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Black Friday is here and if you’re reading this post it’s probably because you saw my Instagram story earlier where I asked if you guys would be interested in my Art related picks for Black Friday or if you were completely done with the never-ending emails we have been receiving for weeks now. (I know I am!). So, that’s what I’m doing this year. I’ll be compiling the best discounts, in my opinion, from all of the art/stationery stores we all know and love.

For all your Art materials – whether you’re a pro or just after some crafting goodies, check out Cass Art HERE. Use code OFFER20

For all things calligraphy and my absolute go to online store with everything you need from nibs, inks, paper plus so much more check out Scribblers Calligraphy HERE*. Use code bfd2020

The most incredible stationery store, which also sells an array of gorgeous inks and ink palettes visit Quill London HERE – would also highly recommend you checking out their incredible store in Marylebone once lockdown is over too! – I purchase all my stationery bits from here and purchase my planner from Quill every year. Use code BLACKFRI15

Next up – Hobbycraft, if you’ve ever visited one you’ll know it’s like falling into crafting/stationery/art etc heaven, options are limitless, you walk away with way more than you intended to ever buy and all at a fraction of the price – well beyond this, they’re offering black friday deals too. Find it HERE.

For you Pro Artists, check out my new favourite store! They have all the materials from canvases and paints to graphics and illustration tools. Check them out HERE.

Lastly, probably the one I’m most excited about – Papier, home of all things to do with personalised stationery and custom notebooks are offering 20% off site wide. Click HERE to check their range of gorgeous notebooks.
That’s all from me. If you guys have any art/crafts or stationery Black Friday suggestions please do leave them in the comments below, looking forward to seeing all your purchases!

My favourites from Edding

This post contains *gifted items.

It’s been a while since I last made an appearance here on the blog but I thought I’d write up a post all about my favourite bits from one of my favourite stationery brands, Edding UK.

A lot of my DMs include messages from a number of my followers requesting help, advice and questions regarding the materials I use and in particular, what pens I use, and whilst I’ve done a lot of trial and error you guys can skip all that and go ahead and start with your masterpieces without all the faff beforehand.

One of my favourite brands for stationery and to use on my pieces, whether on canvas or card, are from Edding UK. They provide a huge range of items and I love that they have bits specifically for us calligraphers!
In this blog post I’ve curated some of my favourite pieces I have found so far;

  1. Edding 1255 Calligraphy Pen (link here)

My go-to pen for all my beginner’s Arabic calligraphy workshops – with the perfect flat edged nib it’s the perfect tool for every beginner as its replicates the traditional Qalam, without the fuss of ink etc. This easy to use pen helps to create the same strokes you would achieve with traditional materials and can aid in getting your hand used to quite a different nib before venturing out into other materials.

2. Edding 1200 Metallic Colour Pen (link here)

The tip, colour selection and colour pay off all contribute to helping this set make it’s way into this post. The pigmentation of these are absolutely fabulous. They show up vibrantly on almost any surface and I have used these for many events where I am invited into stores but might not know what surface I’ll be working one, (I’ve done chopping board personalisation to mugs) and I always take these along with me as I know I can trust they’ll work perfectly!

3. Edding Paint Markers (link here)

I cannot rave about these enough – they provide the pigmentation and colour pay off of paints yet come with the ease and precision of an everyday pen making it easy to see why they’ve been included in this post. They also come in a range of colours but my personal are the black and white so I can use on any surface.

4. Edding Fineliners (link here)

Lastly the Edding fineliners – works from your Bullet Journal to precise mark making on canvas or card. They come in tip sizes as small as 0.2mm and in a range of colours too.

I hope you enjoyed this post – let me know if you purchase anything from the brand, I’d love to see so leave me a comment below if you can.

Lucy 🙂