26 June 2012

Calligraphy Classes and Visiting Melbourne

It's true!  I will be visiting Melbourne, Australia to teach at the Summer School in Winter calligraphy conference, hosted by the Calligraphy Society of Victoria.  Interested?  Then please stop by my current blog to read all about it, and then sign up to receive a notification when I update ... which I hope to do quite a lot.  Look forward to seeing you there!

04 April 2012

Making A Move

While Blogspot has been a wonderful place to start my blog, I will soon be moving to Wordpress so that it will have a home on my website (something Blogger doesn't offer).

Today I transferred all my past posts, but I may continue to blog here for a little bit longer, we'll see.

Anyway, whether you follow me here or haven't yet taken the plunge, please be sure to head on over to follow me there ... I don't want you to miss a single post to come!

03 April 2012

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....

                       Click on the list to see a larger image.

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!

02 April 2012

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!

14 February 2012

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!

05 December 2011

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!

16 September 2011

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. : )

31 August 2011

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 commerical work. Make sure you get yours soon!

04 May 2011

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!

20 April 2011

Together Again For The First Time

This past weekend I had the great pleasure to host calligraphic artist Annie B. Cicale, who was in Los Angeles to teach a workshop. Her book has been in my library since the day it was published (well, just about, anyway) and since we hadn't met before I was delighted to finally have an opportunity to study with her. Although we were really tired from the workshop, being letter fanatics to the core, we couldn't pass up the opportunity for a very special photograph. (In case you need a hint as to what it's all about, her initials are ABC, and mine are XYZ.)

P.S. One of the must-have books for your calligraphic reference library is The Art & Craft of Hand Lettering by Annie Cicale.

02 February 2011


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!

27 January 2011


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 appreciaton 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!

21 December 2010

Fa La La La La

No time of year makes me happier than does the one we are in now. I've gotten past the big work push for a few days and am looking forward to some time away from drawing board, at least for a day or two.

Christmas brings me much joy, and my hope and wish is that the coming days of this festive season bring you much happiness, as you celebrate with those you love!

09 November 2010

Flourished Calligraphy for a Save The Date

This was quite a fun, yet challenging project ... designing the "perfect" version of the words Save The Date, in a flourished calligraphic script. The photograph was taken by Elizabeth Messina, and the invitation was designed by my friend Susan at Papel Paper & Press.

14 October 2010

Births, Deaths and Marriages

Matt Ellis contacted me to hand letter the title of his recent album entitled, Births, Deaths and Marriages. If you have a few minutes to kick back, check out the video Heart of Mine for a quick look and listen, it's a great song – and you get to see a cute lil' pooch!

08 October 2010

Calligraphy & Cupcakes

There is not a calligrapher that I know - and I know quite a few - who would think that calligraphy can be done well without chocolate being involved. At a recent workshop, one of the class participants was lovely and brought these delightful mini cupcakes for all to enjoy. They were just so cute I had to take a picture ... yum!

08 September 2010

Artist Brittney Lee

Today I learned about Brittney Lee, a very talented artist and animator who does the most wonderful paper sculptures as well. Here are a few images from her blog. Make sure you check out her items for sale on Etsy, too!

06 September 2010

Stationery Giveaway

The first day of school was always an exciting time for me. A new pencil box, a new box of crayons, a new wardrobe, and the opportunity to see my old friends and make new ones was thrilling.

So, in honour of the first day of school, and with the idea I will get to share something with my old friends and meet new friends, I've got a Giveaway to offer to my followers. All you need to do to enter is to make sure your sweet little avatar shows up in the follower list on the blog and leave a comment which includes your choice of envelope colour. Then, next Monday, sometime before noon my time, I will pick a number via and voilá ... you may be the winner!

Of course, if you would like to purchase a set for yourself or someone special, you can do so at my Felt & Wire shop.  : )

05 September 2010

09 July 2010

Van Gogh's Palette

Awhile back on the, there was an article entitled "Why preserve Van Gogh's palette?" which I found fascinating ... and you may as well.

06 July 2010

28 June 2010

Auction For A Good Cause

Perhaps you will remember my post from a short time ago about A Place To Bark ... well, the art has been compiled into a book and is currently up for auction on eBay. Won't you take a moment to check it out and, if you are able, place a generous bid on it? Not only will 100% of the proceeds will go to Bernie and the animals at A Place To Bark, but you will receive a one-of-a-kind book filled with original art. The countdown is quickly coming to an end so do check it out soon....

17 June 2010

A Lovely GiveAway

How exciting to be part of a give-away! Particularly one curated by photographer extraordinaire Elizabeth Messina. To see what is in store, head over to her blog, Kiss The Groom, then cross your fingers and throw your name into the hat (by leaving a comment) ....

15 June 2010

Casual But Chic Wedding Calligraphy

A little more free and flowing than standard copperplate calligraphy, this lettering style is one of my favourites!

                               Click on the image to get a better view....

11 June 2010

05 June 2010


Although I have always loved Weathergrams, this was the first time I created any myself. They were developed in the mid-1920s by Lloyd Reynolds, who taught writing and calligraphy at Reed College near Portland, and were meant to be written on brown paper (mine came via Trader Joe's shopping bags) and hung in a tree, to be exposed to the rain and elements, and to gently weather. These eventually went to France, and so I don't exactly know what has happened to them, but I had a chance to snap some shots of them before they made their journey.


02 June 2010


                             Written with a No. 2 Ticonderoga Pencil


26 May 2010

How Do I Love Thee?

This poem, by Elizabeth Barrett Browning, was a delightful surprise to discover, tucked away in a folder with scans of other long-forgotten projects from the past. This was a commission for a client who wanted it to look like it had been secreted and carried in someone's wallet for many years.

Please click on the image to get a better view of the piece.


21 May 2010


                                     Created with a Dotta-riffic Marker


18 May 2010


Elizabeth Messina's A Lovely Workshop is in France this year, and it began yesterday. Kristen Souders of Bliss* Video Productions created an absolutely gorgeous, perfectly scrumptious video that I am sure you will enjoy watching. Oh, and you'll see some snippets of my calligraphy, and get a peek of the travel journal that I donated to the goodie bag. Stay tuned for more to come ... and have a lovely day!

14 May 2010

Wedding Invitation Calligraphy

Here are a few examples of my calligraphy that was used on an invitation, menu and monogram. Please click on each image if you would like a closer view.

                                                  Design by Grapevine
                                               Photographer unknown
                                 {but would happily give credit if I knew}


09 May 2010

A Place To Bark

My dear friend Renée Troy has organized a great group of mixed media artists to collaborate on a book, that she will be creating to be auctioned, the proceeds of which will go directly to A Place To Bark, a no kill foster and adoption shelter. It was an honour to be asked to participate, thank you, Renée!

Here is my contribution ... the background is a piece of my paste paper, and the text was written with a pointed pen and gouache. Panzer, a Doberman, was my friend's dog and a real love. It was great to be able to contribute to a worthy cause and, at the same time, create a small tribute to this sweet pooch.

Stay tuned for information on about purchasing a copy of the book when it is published, as it will be perfectly fabulous and one that you will want for yourself ... and best of all, 100% of the profits will go directly to A Place To Bark.


07 May 2010

02 May 2010

My Muse

For many reasons, Feddie is a special cat. The biggest one of all, however, is that it seems every picture I snap of him is perfect.

                               {click on the image to get a better view}


27 April 2010


                             Drawn with a Gillott 1068A and gouache
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