Having a general interest, but limited ability, in craft (I like to think I am crafty, but don’t give myself enough time to practice!) when a friend suggested we try out a Modern Calligraphy session I jumped at the chance. In May 2017 we went along to a workshop by The Crafthood at Meet & Treat in Newcastle. Not knowing what to expect, or even knowing what Modern Calligraphy was, I was delighted to be handed a cup of coffee and a lovely piece of cake to enjoy whilst learning about the practice, and importantly, for me, about finding our own style of writing.
Calligraphy is very therapeutic! We spent much of the 3 hour workshop building a writing rhythm and it was so calming. We practiced pen strokes, letters, tricky letter combinations, calming wording such as ‘minimum’, which is a treat to write in calligraphy and of course some of the more instagrammable words like ‘happy’ and ‘love’. We left the session equipped with the basic kit we needed, and I headed home. The next night, I practiced, and sent a few photos to my friends, who all gave positive feedback. Then, my fiancé and I decided to plan a wedding, for August 12th of the same year. Project wedding was on!
With my new found skill, I threw together some wedding invitations for free on Canva.com, and had them printed at Sploshh in Newcastle University Student Union…all 160 of them. I left a line for the invitees name and decided to get to work on practicing my calligraphy. With just one Crafthood workshop, and one additional evening to practice, I set about with the lovely gold finetec ink that I had bought from Kay and Sharon’s pop up shop at the workshop. I only messed up 4 of them, I was officially a consistent calligrapher! Here is a photo of some of the invitations. I got cocky and wrote the names on the envelopes in gold too! Why not.
Right, what else could I DIY for the wedding? I remembered we had been given a 10% discount code and an invitation to another Crafthood course, this time Brush Lettering. I loved the idea of having hand painted signs everywhere at our very simple, industrial style wedding and had a full Pinterest board of ideas. Taking along the same friend who had also enjoyed the Modern Calligraphy plus 2 other friends, who didn’t need much convincing, we again found ourselves falling in love with taking time out to write stuff in fancy ways! Sharon & Kay gave us many tips and techniques, and just have a natural and hands-off way of making you ‘get it’ within just one workshop. This time I returned home not just with my basic kit from the workshop, but with one of everything that they sold in the pop up shop and the idea to use a large kraft roll for one of my signs as they do at Meet and Treat for their tea menu! Here’s what I created (some in true brush lettering and some is faux-lettering, which is just as effective, and works well for larger projects).