Paper, ink and an idea

I’ve been feeling for a while that I wanted to write - not just with a pen and ink (although I’d really like to be doing way more of that, too) but to really write my thoughts down somewhere in the hope that they might be useful, maybe entertaining...

So, let me introduce myself, my business and my plans for this space.

I’m Alison and as it says all over this website, I’m a calligrapher based in the Derbyshire countryside. I began discovering modern calligraphy nearly six years ago. I instantly fell in love, found an affinity with the pointed pen, and wanted to learn more so I sought out an online tutorial or course. There are hundreds of brilliant resources for modern calligraphy online now which is incredible but when I started, the best place, I felt, was without a doubt Melissa Esplin’s online I Still Love Calligraphy course - which now has it’s home in an amazing online platform at Calligraphy.org . Melissa was, and still is, a massive inspiration and such a brilliant teacher.

The wonderful thing about modern calligraphy is just how adaptable it can be, allowing you to create pretty much anything, on any surface. But good old paper and ink still makes my heart sing.

I began doing pieces for family and friends (while juggling a full-time job and everything life throws at you in your late twenties) and it grew from there. Teaching workshops was a natural progression and I found a passion for teaching I didn’t expect - it’s still one of my favourite parts of my job.

I got engaged, planned my own wedding, got married and then sixteen months later had a baby. Maternity leave was the joyful, stressful, emotional rollercoaster you expect and then I was faced with the choice of do I go back to my corporate job or do I finally take the leap I’ve been thinking about for the best part of four years? Getting to see more of my little boy and having the flexibility of doing my own thing won and here we are! Starting a business while juggling new family life with only a few hours childcare a month is definitely not easy (maybe I’ll write a post about that one day, too) but we’re getting there.

I’ve got a long way to go to get to ‘where I want to be’ (don’t ask me to define what that is but I’m hoping I know when I get there) but the journey is fun.

At the heart of it all, I love my craft. I love everything about it and everything it can be. I love my customers for trusting me to help them create their vision and I love the ones who let me create that vision for them.

I want to use this blog to write about what I’m learning, give some advice that I think will be useful when navigating the world of stationery (particularly wedding stationery) and share some of the beautiful projects I get to work on, too.

If you made it this far, thank you - you’re made of stronger stuff than me!

Alison x