I am working on a special commissioned piece for non-profit organization that wants to list names of individuals who have given contributions. There will be three sections of donors. The book is an incredible Italian hand made, leather bound book. Unfortunately, not made with a calligrapher in mind. The paper is not sized and very fiberous. But, I have worked out all those details.

Any way, I am very excited to take this opportunity to practice some techniques
 I learned  at the IAMPETH Conference in Milwaukee.

The image below, shows the layout design for one of the page headers but using type for part of it. The above image is the hand executed work that I have completed so far. And which I must get back to . . .


lake painting blog

Another wedding painting on its way to a happy couple. This is just a small portion. The scene is a small gazebo on a lake. The couple's date is also hand lettered onto the painting. At the reception, guest will sign this keepsake for the couple.


Wedding Envelopes

 For most wedding jobs, I use this traditional layout for envelopes. It is a staggered indent that allows for the lines to lead the eye down to the next line of the address. I find this to be very pleasing!

However, this address was not going to work with a staggered layout. You see, the second line takes the FULL size of the envelope to fit in the "world's longest" address (and I still wound up having to abbreviate a word). My only solution was to write out the address and then center each line. Many calligraphers offer to center addresses, however after this job . . . well, there would have to be an extra charge to cover the extra time to center each line.


L gold leaf

L gold leaf by long village lettering
L gold leaf, a photo by long village lettering on Flickr.

Finishing up my decorative letter from the IAMPETH conference. Used leaf gold - which I am now able to do thanks to Instacoll! Love it!


decorated L

decorated L by long village lettering
decorated L, a photo by long village lettering on Flickr.
Just back from a wonderful conference in Wisconsin for penmen/women from around the world! One little exercise at a class. Loved this simple method for putting on real gold leaf! Thanks to Harvest Crittenden!


Calligraphy Envelope

Making progress . . . signed up for an exchange with the 
International Association of Master Penman, Engrossers, and Teachers of Handwriting . . . 
I have the outer envelopes addressed; now, I need to work on enclosures.

Love the idea of writing formal copperplate on a diagonal. 

I think this would be beautiful for a wedding invitation!

 Even when the state does not fit on the line, the layout looks lovely split up.


Vintage Wedding Certificate

Another wonderful Gift idea!
This vintage certificate was purchased on line as a computer file. It can then be printed at home or at a print shop. Complete the certificate with hand calligraphy to match the script. Sure to be a treasured keepsake!


Original Work

What a wonderful gift to give your spouse!
This is a recent commissioned piece that a thoughtful wife will be giving her husband. She explained that he has kept this quote on a small piece of paper on his dresser for a very long time. She decided to get it hand lettered and framed for his next birthday.

Our last two guild meetings came in handy. We spent one night playing with various RULING pens, giving us a chance to try out different manufacturers and homemade pens. Another meeting was how to make and use walnut ink. Our hostess gave each of us a fresh jar of walnut ink to take home.

This final piece is all walnut ink, with a few touches of Dr. Ph. Martin's Spectralite liquid gold.

Not really knowing the client, I decided to do a second layout to give her a choice . . . . and it is also the way this project seemed to being working out in my head. While playing with the ruling pen and walnut ink, both of these layouts came to me.

I do like to work two at a time. Usually that means that with the same layout I make two. It must be because I am a mother of twins. The nice thing about working with two copies, if you make a mistake the pressure is off because you already have the backup one. Some how this makes me a bit more relaxed and the lettering seems to flow more naturally. I'm not uptight about each stroke having to be perfect. For the most part, it does not take any more time to create the second one since I would be doing practice on the various parts any way.

So for this job, I really worked on four.

The duplicate for the first layout turned into a practice rather quickly. I never did like the artistic mark. But it gave me a piece to work things out on  .  .  .

Then for the second layout design, the second piece turned out just as clean and finished as the one I like better. I used it to try out a different color ink for the text lettering. While I like the color, I'm not sure it is as easy to read. The final lettering was the I believe up the side. I'm not as happy with that on this one because the letters are too tight. I created the letters with the ruling pen and walnut ink. While the walnut ink was still very wet I dropped in some of the Spectralite and let the two blend as they wished. I love the look. Hoping the client will as well.

So here is the second of the second . . . 

I meet with the client tonight. Can not wait to see if she likes either. And, which one she will take home. The great thing about working with two at a time, I'm left with an original for my portfolio. And it was all just part of the process.

Here is a close up of the side lettering. The wlanut ink was put down first with a ruling pen. While the ink is wet, I drop in a small amount of the Spectralite Gold and let the two wet solutions mix as they will. I just love this look.


Fresh Idea

Looking for a fresh idea for your program? and one that is environmentally friendly? and one that becomes a treasured keepsake? This large, program was used at the entrance so that guests knew what to expect and then was taken to the reception and signed by all the guests. The couple was able to frame it for their new home to remember their special wedding day and all who wish them happiness!


Wedding Invitations

Looking for a calligrapher for your wedding? 

I enjoy helping brides give a stunning first impression of their wedding day. 
Calligraphy can add a final touch on your wedding invitations.



Alphabet Sampler

Working on my homework for the on-line class by Joan Sharpe, titled Letter Love 101. While I'm way behind the schedule she intended . . . . I'm loving the letters! Very relaxing to let go of perfection and put spontaneity into each letter and the background.


Wedding Season

Here is the long of it - 
check out the city and state combo!

And now the short of it . . . 
why can't everyone live in Ada, Ohio???
Just finished my third wedding job this month. Busy, busy, busy. This one was by far my favorite list of invitees. Just about everyone lived in Ohio or Illinois. 
I love living in Hendersonville, North Carolina - but would a shorter name really change anything about the beauty of this fair town? or state? But it sure would make my hand happier!



Wedding Season

     Spring is here!
     The birds are nesting and the brides are working on the details of their special day.
      One of the important details is in regards to making your guests feel welcome at your reception. A seating chart, escort cards, and place cards are a great way to start. They let your guests know you want them to have a great time at a place set just for them.
      There are so many great ideas for alternative seating charts - ribbon boards, clothes pins off a suspended wire, or a decorated  table of place cards in alphabetical order.
      Each of these items can help enhance the mood of your reception and add to the personality of the table. I enjoy working with couples or wedding planners who are looking for something just a bit more than a traditional tent card.

Contact me and we can create something together that will be an exciting element of your reception.


Love Lettering

I have just signed up to take an on line course, which started Feb 1 - a bit late. Class ends tomorrow, but I will be plugging along. The class is titled, Letter Love 101 by Joanne Sharpe. It is a fun, creative look at lettering for journals. Here is the project for lesson 3 - make this sign for your work station.



Place Cards

Here are two cute ideas for creative place cards.
These would be at the table when your guests get to their table.

The top glass has a paper circle that is placed on the rim of the glass. 
The name is written around the circle.

The second idea is a quilled paper heart
Again, this would be at the table for your guest. 
The heart can hang off the rim of the glass or curl around the stem of the glass.

Having place cards helps to  make your guests feel comfortable in knowing they are sitting in the 'right' place. Place cards also show you thought of all the little details to make your day personal and welcoming for your guests. A seating chart at the door would be necessary for each of these creative ideas.


Broad edge letters

Time to get out the broad edged pen and get back to my roots. Italics was the first hand I learned back in 1987 (could it possibly be that long ago?) I was fortunate to live in the Western suburbs of Chicago and had a great teacher, Barbara Carlson. You never know when you sign up to take a class what the teacher will be like - mine was super!
Then my next teacher was Peter Thornton - it doesn't get better than him! I boldly sign-up to attend Camp Cheerio with no knowledge of what I was getting into. The week long experience was a game changer. I was introduced into a wonderful world of lettering! I have also had the thrill of taking from other teachers: Sheila Waters, John Stevens and Mike Kesceg.

This one is NOT italic. It is foundational. Probably should have learned this hand first . . .
The technique on both is loading the pen with varying colors as you write. Rather unpredictable. But I just love the finished look.


Happy New Year

Wishing you all a very exciting and fulfilling 2012!
May we all enjoy those things and people who make our days joyous.
May you find blessings each day during this leap year - an extra blessing!
I know I am looking forward to time to be creative with my ink & pens!