Category Archives: Calligraphy

Rumi Quote

Now that Christmas is past, I can share these two calligraphy pieces I was commissioned to do. They were given as Christmas gifts.

Out beyond the ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I’ll meet you there. – Rumi

 

Out beyond the ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I’ll meet you there. – Rumi

I like how they came out.

Enjoy, Candy

Studio Snapshot – Lettering Envelopes For My Holiday Cards

With my Christmas Santa cards done (see DIY Torn Paper Santa Holiday Cards), I’ve switched my focus to lettering the envelopes in which to send them.

I decided on shades of red for the calligraphy on the envelopes for my Santa cards.

I decided on shades of red for the calligraphy on the envelopes for my Santa cards.

Looking at my Santa cards, I decided I needed to letter my envelopes in reds. I started with a light red and went back in with a darker red. Then I outlined the letters and embellished them a bit. And I added hearts, just because I thought they added just the right amount of additional red that was needed.

Envelopes for my Holiday Cards.

Envelopes for my Holiday Cards.

I think they look great. Now to finish addressing them and get them in the mail. A number of them are going overseas, so I hope they arrive in time.

Enjoy, Candy

Happy Thanksgiving 2016

Thanksgiving is a day of gratitude and sharing for me. Today I count my blessings, of which there are many. Although this past year has been extremely stressful, I have had a great many wonderful experiences and fantastic support from family and friends.

This is a collaboration I did with my mother. She did the Chinese brush painting and I did the calligraphy.

This is a collaboration I did with my mother. She did the Chinese brush painting and I did the calligraphy.

I am so grateful to all of you who read my blog and those who share your comments with me. I feel so blessed to be able to share my paper art with so many people, many of whom I will never meet. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart.

I am grateful for my loving family and friends, near and far, old and new. Thank you ALL for being so supportive of me and of each other. I am truly blessed to have you as part of my life.

Love and blessings to all, Candy

Pilot Flex Extra Fine Fountain Pen

I have been looking for a flexible fountain pen for a long, long time. I have tried many fountain pens, and purchased a number of them. I used them, but kept looking for one that fit me. I’m not sure if it has anything to do with being a leftie, but the perfect fountain pen seemed elusive, until now.

I love my new Pilot Flex Extra Fine Fountain Pen.

I love my new Pilot Flex Extra Fine Fountain Pen.

Whenever I see someone selling fountain pens, I always ask if they have a flexible fountain pen with a pointed nib, not a broad nib. Greg Minuskin of Nib Retipping was the first vendor who said, “yes, try this.” No fountain pen I have tried has ever come close to this much flexibility. I fell in love with the pen as soon as I tried it out.

My Pilot Flex Extra Fine Fountain Pen.

My Pilot Flex Extra Fine Fountain Pen.

I bought the pen 23 days ago and have used it every day since. It’s been the perfect tool to practice my pointed pen calligraphy. With the fountain pen, I can sit anywhere and not have to worry about spilling ink. When I use a dip pen, I always sit at my drafting table in my studio. It’s easy for me to spill ink, so I am careful not to have open bottles of ink anywhere but in my studio. I learned this from experience and a few unintended spills.

My favorite way to practice with my new fountain pen is to sit in my chair in the living room with my Rhodia dot pad and just write whatever comes into my mind. It’s so relaxing, it doesn’t even feel like I’m practicing.

I love the Rhodia dot grid pad for practicing with my new Pilot Flex Extra Fine Fountain Pen.

I love the Rhodia dot grid pad for practicing with my new Pilot Flex Extra Fine Fountain Pen.

A plug here for the Rhodia pads. They are my favorite practice pads. I use the dot pads most often and sometimes the unlined pads. Rhodia pads also come in lined and grid patterns, but my favorite is the dot pad. The dots help me keep my writing in a straight line, but they don’t feel like they’re confining my writing. I like my calligraphy to have a little spring, more like a dance than being confined between lines.

I was told that with my Pilot Flex fountain pen, I can only use fountain pen ink. I was told not to even use Higgens Eternal or Noodlers inks in my pen. So, that is one limitation you need to be aware of. I am currently using Pelikan 4001 fountain pen ink. My local art store only had it in blue. I’ll be purchasing some Pelikan Fount India ink from John Neal Bookseller with my next order.

Happy writing, Candy

More Photos – Calligraphy & Art Retreat 2016

After posting Monday’s blog post with lots of photos of what went on the annual Calligraphy & Art Retreat I attend every year, I realized there was a lot more I wanted to share. So much happened within those 7 days, it’s hard to remember it all.

My first attempt at pastel dusting.

My first attempt at pastel dusting.

After I got home I realized that I took many photos of what others did, but only one photo of what I did during the week. The above photo shows my first attempt at pastel dusting. Sally demonstrated both the pastel dusting and making the squares into a mobile.

The other side of my pastel dusting mobile.

The other side of my pastel dusting mobile.

My head is still swimming with ideas. And my dreams for the past few nights have been incredible, all about ideas for new art projects.

Wonderful little gifts I received from my artist friends.

Wonderful little gifts I received from my artist friends.

There was a wonderful camaraderie and sharing of ideas, techniques, tools and more.

I took some of my stash of tea bag wrappers and demonstrated tea bag folding.

I took some of my stash of tea bag wrappers and demonstrated tea bag folding.

My tea bag folding demonstration was a hit. I took a bunch of my tea bag wrappers and shared them with everyone.

I think I got Sally hooked on tea bag folding.

I think I got Sally hooked on tea bag folding.

The above photo shows some of the rosettes that Sally made. I find it amazing how such a simple folding of tea bag wrappers can be so meditative and relaxing.

File folder dipped in walnut ink shown with walnut ink crystals.

File folder dipped in walnut ink shown with walnut ink crystals.

The above photo is of the file folder I dipped into walnut ink, then dried on scrunched up plastic. The plastic bag in the photo is 8 ounces of walnut ink crystals. I will be using these to make my own walnut ink later this winter when I have some free time to experiment with this technique for an extended period of time.

This is one of Michelle's walnut ink file folders. She started with a red file folder.

This is one of Michelle’s walnut ink file folders. She started with a red file folder.

The above photo is something Michelle has been working on. It started out as a red file folder that was dipped into walnut ink. The white areas are where she dabbed on bleach. She then added stitches and some ink drawing. I think this would be perfect as a cover for a little journal.

One of the projects I worked on during the week.

One of the projects I worked on during the week.

I got to work on a number of different projects during the week. The above photo shows some of the card books I started making.

We sent two mobiles to two of our past Womenuchans who were unable to attend this year. Here are the squares that were eventually made into mobiles.

We sent two mobiles to two of our past Womenuchans who were unable to attend this year. Here are the squares that were eventually made into mobiles.

Tea bag folding, pastel dusting and mobile making were three constants throughout the week. The above photo shows the squares that we each decorated for Sam and Judy. They became mobiles that were then sent to them. Hopefully both will be able to make it next year.

This is what Adelaide made to carry her colored pencils.

This is what Adelaide made to carry her colored pencils.

There was a lot of sharing during the week. Adelaide showed us how she made a colored pencil carrier from a piece of felt. The creativity of everyone who attended our retreat is amazing.

Information as well as lots of mobiles were posted on this door in our joint studio.

Information as well as lots of mobiles were posted on this door in our joint studio.

It was one amazing week. I am so looking forward to next year.

Happy creating, Candy

Studio Snapshot – Calligraphy & Art Retreat 2016

I am just back from my annual Calligraphy & Art Retreat. My studio for the week was a six foot table in a converted greenhouse. I got to do nothing but make art for an entire week. No cooking or cleaning, just a week of art and inspiration. I shared space with 11 talented and wonderful women artists. Nirvana!

My first attempt at paper cutting.

My first attempt at paper cutting. I drew my flower on the back of the paper, then cut from the back. I laid the cut outs over metallic papers.

I packed lots of art supples and minimal clothes. Gotta keep priorities straight when going on an art retreat.

Michelle demonstrated dipping file folders into walnut ink.

Michelle demonstrated dipping file folders into walnut ink.

Many of us give informal demonstrations to anyone who was interested. Michelle showed us how she dips file folders into walnut ink, then places them on crumpled plastic to get a texture on the file folders. The above photo shows her laying a file folder on plastic from dry cleaner bags.

Dried file folers that were dipped in walnut ink.

Dried file folers that were dipped in walnut ink.

Once dry the file folders can be further decorated with paints, drawing, bleach or whatever media you like.

Walnut ink file folders that have been decorated.

Walnut ink file folders that have been decorated.

Once decorated, the file folders can be used in any number of art projects. Book covers come to mind immediately for me. I think this will be one of my winter projects.

Sally showed us how to make delightful mobiles.

Sally showed us how to make delightful mobiles.

Sally showed us how she makes mobiles. She made numerous mobiles this past year. One is shows above. She also made a number of mobiles celebrating The Beatles and all their songs.

Rhonda made this mobile using walnut ink file folders.

Rhonda made this mobile using walnut ink file folders.

Our annual retreat takes place at the Menucha Retreat and Conference Center in Corbett, Oregon. Rhonda made a mobile which used cut outs from her walnut ink file folder to spell Menucha (photo above).

The reverse of Rhonda's mobile.

The reverse of Rhonda’s mobile.

It’s hard to photograph mobiles. The above photos show the two sides of Rhonda’s mobile. It looks great when hung, but the photos I took of it hung don’t do it justice, so I photographed each side on white paper.

We don't always work on finished projects. Sometimes we try out new materials.

We don’t always work on finished projects. Sometimes we try out new materials.

Sometimes it’s important to try out and keep track of how different inks, paints, pens and other materials look like. The above photo shows one of Sally’s testing sheets. She made lots of tests. It’s helpful to keep track of what different materials will do, especially when combined.

Weathergrams that will be hung on a tree near the labyrinth.

Weathergrams that will be hung on a tree near the labyrinth.

If you’ve not heard of weathergrams, check out How To Make A Weathergram.

Renae made this wonderful dog portrait.

Renae made this wonderful dog portrait.

Renae makes the most wonderful animal drawings and paintings. You can see more of her art on her Facebook page: Birdland Art.

Goose painted by Kay.

Goose painted by Kay.

A page in Kay's journal documenting her recent trip to Ireland and Scotland.

A page in Kay’s journal documenting her recent trip to Ireland and Scotland.

Kay makes the most amazing journals. Above is a 2 page spread of her latest journal. It’s all about her trip to Ireland and Scotland.

Credit cards painted and ready to be made into a book.

Credit cards painted and ready to be made into a book.

Lily is an amazing bookbinder. The above photo shows what she has done with credit cards. They have been textured and painted. They will be turned into a book.

Lily's finished book with covers that were originally credit cards.

Lily’s finished book with covers that were originally credit cards.

The photo above shows a book Lily made using credit cards as covers. I guess I need to be collecting old credit cards now in addition to tea bag wrappers.

Nancy made this delightful watercolor painting for the front of a card.

Nancy made this delightful watercolor painting for the front of a card.

Nancy makes the most delicate watercolors. Every year I am impressed by what she produces. I snapped this photo while she was still working on her painting. I imagine there may be calligraphy added to the card.

Michelle tried working with walnut ink on fabric. This is just the beginning. I can hardly wait to see what she makes with these.

Michelle tried working with walnut ink on fabric. This is just the beginning. I can hardly wait to see what she makes with these.

Michelle played with both walnut ink and fabric this year. The above photo shows the beginning of her experimentation.

Painting fabric and lettering with puffy paint.

Painting fabric and lettering with puffy paint.

Michelle colored fabric and then wrote on it with puffy paint. She gave each of us at the retreat a “Womenuchans” fabric hanging. What a treat!

Experimentation by Adelaide.

Experimentation by Adelaide.

As I mentioned earlier, not everything we do at Menucha is a finished product. There’s lots of experimentation that goes on here. Adelaide did a lot of experimenting. I really like the effects she got by putting different metallic paints into wet walnut ink. Yes, there was a lot of experimenting with walnut ink this past week.

Adelaide made tea bag wrappers made into rosettes after my short demonstration.

Adelaide made tea bag wrappers made into rosettes after my short demonstration.

Early in the week I demonstrated how to make rosettes from tea bag wrappers. Adelaide went a bit further and used coffee creamer wrappers and candy wrappers as well as tea bag wrappers to make her rosettes. A number of my fellow artists joined in this activity. Links to instructions are on my blog post: DIY – Tea Bag Folding & Paper Origami Rosettes.

Edna made this wonderful birds nest using colored pencils.

Edna made this wonderful birds nest using colored pencils.

It’s hard to remember all the details of what everyone did. I believe Edna used watercolor colored pencils to make this birds nest.

Edna breaking in her new journal.

Edna breaking in her new journal.

I can’t remember the word Edna used, but the idea is to make marks on your journal pages to make it easier to write in. With something already on a page, it’s less intimidating  to write on the page. I do have a number of wonderful journals that I haven’t used yet. This sounds like a great idea.

One of Sally's works in progress.

One of Sally’s works in progress.

Sally is an amazing calligrapher. The above photo is one of a number of ones she was working on when I stopped by to photograph what she was doing.

Another of Sally's works in progress.

Another of Sally’s works in progress.

More of Sally's work.

More of Sally’s work.

I love Sally’s calligraphy and paintings. I have one of her works in my hall, just above a large vase of sunflowers. The sumi painting, calligraphy and flowers compliment each other. You can see more of Sally’s work on her website: Sally’s Website.

Rhonda did some playing with white and color on black paper.

Rhonda did some playing with white and color on black paper.

Black paper is fun to work on. The above photo shows some of the playing Rhonda did with color and white pens on black paper. So much potential!

Renae made this stand up tiger for Kay for her upcoming birthday. Note the birthday hat.

Renae made this stand up tiger for Kay for her upcoming birthday. Note the birthday hat.

Renae made the above tiger card for Kay for her birthday. If you look closely, you can see “Kay” written above the tiger’s eyes.

Playing with pastel dusting.

Playing with pastel dusting.

Sally also demonstrated pastel dusting. There were so many wonderful things happening through out the week, it is impossible to document it all. It’s something you need to experience in person.

View from Menucha Retreat and Conference Center overlooking the Columbia River. What an inspiring place to come to each year to make art!

View from Menucha Retreat and Conference Center overlooking the Columbia River. What an inspiring place to come to each year to make art!

I love my fellow artists and look forward to transporting my studio, once again next year, to Menucha.

Happy creating, Candy

Wonderful Envelopes Sent To John Neal Bookseller

This week I’m attending my annual summer Calligraphy and Art Retreat near Portland, Oregon. This week is also the annual convention for IAMPETH (short for The International Association of Master Penmen, Engrossers, and Teachers of Handwriting), which is in Portland. So, a few of us went to visit for a few hours.

Envelopes sent to John Neal Bookseller.

Envelopes sent to John Neal Bookseller.

John Neal Bookseller was there to sell supplies to all the attendees and others, like us, who visited. John Neal Bookseller had on display a large quantity of envelopes they have received over the years. My photos aren’t the greatest, but I thought they might provide inspiration. They sure have inspired me.

Envelopes sent to John Neal Bookseller.

Envelopes sent to John Neal Bookseller.

Envelopes sent to John Neal Bookseller.

Envelopes sent to John Neal Bookseller.

Envelopes sent to John Neal Bookseller.

Envelopes sent to John Neal Bookseller.

Envelopes sent to John Neal Bookseller.

Envelopes sent to John Neal Bookseller.

Envelopes sent to John Neal Bookseller.

Envelopes sent to John Neal Bookseller.

One of my favorite envelopes on display.

One of my favorite envelopes on display.

Another close up of one of my favorite envelopes.

Another close up of one of my favorite envelopes.

Another close up of one of my favorite envelopes.

Another close up of one of my favorite envelopes.

Enjoy, Candy

Tips & Tools – Organizing Tombow Brush Pens

I use Tombow brush pens a lot for quick, colorful pointed brush calligraphy. There are a number of different brush pens on the market, but where I live, Tombow has the largest variety of colors.

My spreadsheet helps me organize my Tombow Brush Pens.

My spreadsheet helps me organize my Tombow Brush Pens.

I was constantly buying colors of pens I already had until I came up with a way to organize my brush pens. Each color has a three digit number. I entered the numbers on a spreadsheet and told the spreadsheet to organize the numbers in ascending order. Voila! I have a list of colors in numerical order that I keep in my purse.

I not only keep track of my Tombow Brush Pens on my spreadsheet, I also write the color combinations I use on sample sheets.

I not only keep track of my Tombow Brush Pens on my spreadsheet, I also write the color combinations I use on sample sheets.

When I go to the craft store I can add another color or two that I don’t have. I just look at the number on the pen and can see immediately if I already have that color. That’s exactly what I did yesterday when I purchased some more brush pens. To help me even further, I have brushed the color next to each of the numbers on my spreadsheet. This helps me see which colors I may be wanting to add. I’m thinking blues for my next shopping trip.

It's now easier for me to repeat colors that I like together. My sample sheets are a big time saver.

It’s now easier for me to repeat colors that I like together. My sample sheets are a big time saver.

I also have started writing sample color combinations. Next to the calligraphy sample, I write the number of the pens I have used. Now I don’t have to wonder which colors I used to get the effect I want. It has saved me a lot of time.

Organizing my Tombow Brush Pens has saved me a lot of time.

Organizing my Tombow Brush Pens has saved me a lot of time.

Organizing doesn’t come naturally to me, but I sure appreciate the results. I find I work better in an organized environment, so I struggle to find ways to organize my environment and my art supplies. I so appreciate being able to have a quick look to decide which colors to use for a project.

I love having a quick reference guide to my colors.

I love having a quick reference guide to my colors.

I will be writing names for a fund raiser later this year. I will be using my sample color sheets for people to pick their colors. It will allow me to spend more time writing and less time trying to figure out color combinations.

Organizing doesn't come easy for me, but I do like the results.

Organizing doesn’t come easy for me, but I do like the results.

Happy Organizing, Candy

Nuptial Spirit Vessel – The Process

Last summer I received a commission to make one of my spirit vessels for a wedding. I posted a photo of the paste papers that were chosen for the vessel and asked for ideas as to what to call this type of vessel. After many suggestions on my blog and from friends, I finally settled on calling it a Nuptial Spirit Vessel.

Nuptial Spirit Vessel, Safe Harbor.

Nuptial Spirit Vessel, Safe Harbor.

Now that it has been delivered to the bride and groom, I can share the photos of its making. It started with blue, teal and silver paste papers.

Paste papers cut and folding started for the Nuptial Spirit Vessel, Safe Harbor.

Paste papers cut and folding started for the Nuptial Spirit Vessel, Safe Harbor.

I chose to write the messages for this vessel in copperplate, rather than the italic that I use for the Earth Spirit Vessels. Because copperplate is traditionally used for weddings, it seemed fitting for a Nuptial Spirit Vessel.

Here are some of the 25 messages I calligraphed for inclusion into the vessel.

Here are some of the 25 messages I calligraphed for inclusion into the vessel.

The messages were chosen specifically for the two newlyweds by the person who commissioned the vessel.

The start of Nuptial Spirit Vessel, Safe Harbor.

The start of Nuptial Spirit Vessel, Safe Harbor.

I start making my vessels at the bottom and work up. The above photo shows the vessel with four rows completed.

A closer look at the first few rows of this Nuptial Spirit Vessel.

A closer look at the first few rows of this Nuptial Spirit Vessel.

I continue adding pieces, one row at a time. I add one row, fiddle with making sure everything is round and just the way I want, then glue each individual piece of paper.

Here I've added another couple of rows to the Nuptial Spirit Vessel.

Here I’ve added a few more rows to Nuptial Spirit Vessel, Safe Harbor. This is looking inside.

The above photo is looking into the center of the vessel from above. Its shape isn’t visible from this photo.

This is the look of the outside of the Nuptial Vessel. It's looking at it upside down.

This is the look of the outside of the Nuptial Vessel. It’s looking at it upside down.

The above two photos are from the same stage of completion. The second photo shows the outside of the vessel, though it’s upside down in the photo so you can see what the outside looks like at this point in its construction.

Now the Nuptial Vessel is a little further along. Looking down at the inside.

Now the Nuptial Vessel is a little further along. Looking down at the inside.

The more rows I add, the more the shape becomes apparent. The size of the hole in the bottom of the vessel actually changes shape as the vessel gets larger.

You can finally see how the outside of the Nuptial Vessel is taking shape.

You can finally see how the outside of the Nuptial Vessel is taking shape.

The above two photos show the vessel at the same stage of completion. You can see how the shape is starting to show.

Now it's time to choose the burl wood for the base of the Nuptial Vessel.

Now it’s time to choose the burl wood for the base of the Nuptial Vessel.

All my spirit vessels have burl wood bases. The photo above shows the different pieces of burl wood I looked at before deciding on the one I liked best for this vessel.

Nuptial Spirit Vessel, Safe Harbor.

Finished Nuptial Spirit Vessel, Safe Harbor.

I have been told that the bride and groom absolutely loved their Nuptial Spirit Vessel and were actually moved to tears. It gives me great joy to know that my art has touched the heart of others.

Enjoy, Candy

Studio Snapshot – National Letter Writing Month (week 5)

Last month was National Letter Writing month. And each day for the entire month, I sent out at least one letter a day in a hand decorated envelope. Here is what I sent out last week.

This note and envelope went to Sequoia for day 26 of National Letter Writing Month.

This note and envelope went to Sequoia for day 26 of National Letter Writing Month.

Sequoia’s envelope was hand delivered, so I didn’t have to worry about US Postal Service requirements. I didn’t have to put an address on the envelope or put a stamp on it.

This is the back of Sequoia's envelope for day 26 of National Letter Writing Month.

This is the back of Sequoia’s envelope for day 26 of National Letter Writing Month.

Here is the reverse side of Sequoia’s envelope. It’s on of my origami envelopes. More information is on my post: DIY Origami Envelope. These envelopes are fun to make with a square of paper.

This letter and envelope was sent to Jackie for day 27 of National Letter Writing Month. The keyboard is washi tape.

This letter and envelope was sent to Jackie for day 27 of National Letter Writing Month. The keyboard is washi tape.

Jackie is a retired music teacher. She plays the piano and accordion and a myriad of other instruments. I found keyboard washi tape in Portland last fall and have been waiting for the perfect time to put it on an envelope.

This letter and envelope went to Janet for day 28 of National Letter Writing Month.

This letter and envelope went to Janet for day 28 of National Letter Writing Month.

Janet has written me a number of letters and I wanted to send her one. I’ve been meaning to for some time, so National Letter Writing month was just the perfect push to get me to send her a letter.

This letter and birthday greetings went to Gaea for day 29 of National Letter Writing Month.

This letter and birthday greetings went to Gaea for day 29 of National Letter Writing Month.

Gaea asked for a letter, and since her birthday is at the end of April, I wanted to make it into a birthday card/letter. Notice “Happy Birthday Gaea” around the flower on the envelope and around the card. I had fun with thinking how make this envelope.

This letter and envelope was sent to Angela for day 30 of National Letter Writing Month.

This letter and envelope was sent to Angela for day 30 of National Letter Writing Month.

By the time the end of the month came around, I found I had promised a few more letters than there were days left in the month. So, I sent out 3 letters on the last day of April.

This letter and envelope was sent to Rachel for day 30 of National Letter Writing Month.

This letter and envelope was sent to Rachel for day 30 of National Letter Writing Month.

It was a happy month of making envelopes, trying to figure out a way to make matching stationery, and writing lots of letters. I’m now starting to get a bunch of lovely letters from my friends, old and new.

This letter and envelope was sent to Paula for day 30 of National Letter Writing Month.

This letter and envelope was sent to Paula for day 30 of National Letter Writing Month.

Paula was the last person I promised a letter to for National Letter Writing Month. I do have, however, a list of more people I want to send letters to. So, I’ll still be sending out letters this month, but they’ll go out at a slower pace.

Happy Letter Writing, Candy

Studio Snapshot – National Letter Writing Month (week 4)

I’ve been having a fun time designing matching envelopes and stationery this month. I’ve been sending out at least one letter a day in a hand decorated envelope in honor of April being National Letter Writing Month. These are the envelopes I sent out last week.

I sent Lilli this envelope and stationery for day 19 of National Letter Writing Month.

This letter and envelope went to Lilli for day 19 of National Letter Writing Month.

I sent Lilli a paste paper envelope last year, so I wanted to send her a different type of envelope this year.

This letter and envelope went to Shelly for day 20 of National Letter Writing Month.

This letter and envelope went to Shelly for day 20 of National Letter Writing Month.

Shelly (above) and Leanne (below) are participants in the Letters of Joy Envelope Exchange. I like the way both of these envelopes and matching stationery came out.

This letter and envelope went to Leanne for day 21 of National Letter Writing Month.

This letter and envelope went to Leanne for day 21 of National Letter Writing Month.

It’s been fun to exchange envelopes with others around the country and sometimes around the world. I’ve been in numerous envelope exchanges and they really are lots of fun. I’ve made a number of new pen pals and friends.

This letter and two envelopes went to Diane for day 22 of National Letter Writing Month.

This letter and two envelopes went to Diane for day 22 of National Letter Writing Month.

Diane does the most wonderful iris folding using both oriental papers and old kimono fabric. I wanted to send her an envelope that had a Japanese feel to it. So I put her letter into an origami envelope and put the envelope into a translucent envelope so you could see the detail of the paste paper and the folded origami envelope inside. I used colors to go with the wonderful cherry blossoms on the stamp. I really like the way it came together. Sometimes my ideas work the first time around.

This letter and envelope went to Eric, in France, for day 23 of National Letter Writing Month.

This letter and envelope went to Eric, in France, for day 23 of National Letter Writing Month.

I have exchanged a number of pieces of mail art with Eric over the years. He lives in France and has pen pals all over the world. He has a blog: My Mail Art World. Check it out to see lots of creative envelopes and art.

This letter and envelope went to Sharon for day 24 of National Letter Writing Month.

This letter and envelope went to Sharon for day 24 of National Letter Writing Month.

My dear friend, Sharon, used to live just down the street from me. We would get together at least once a week. She moved to Portland nearly 4 years ago and I miss her dearly. We stay in touch via phone and snail mail, and an occasional visit. I sent her letter in this envelope made from one of my paste papers.

This letter and envelope went to Susan for day 25 of National Letter Writing Month.

This letter and envelope went to Susan for day 25 of National Letter Writing Month.

I have not yet met Susan, even though we’ve been exchanging decorated envelopes and calligraphy for some time. She’s on the East Coast and I’m on the West Coast. Maybe some day we’ll manage to meet in person. Meanwhile, our mail goes back and forth across the country.

To see the envelopes I sent out in other weeks see:
National Letter Writing Month – Week 1
National Letter  Writing Month – Week 2
National Letter Writing Month – Week 3

Happy letter writing, Candy

Studio Snapshot – National Letter Writing Month (week 3)

As those of you who have been following my blog know, I’ve been sending a letter in a hand decorated envelope every day this month in a challenge to myself because April is National Card & Letter Writing Month. These are the envelopes and matching stationery I sent out this past week.

This paste paper envelope and matching stationery went to Phawnda.

This paste paper envelope and matching stationery went to Phawnda for day 13 of National Letter Writing Month.

Phawnda is a fellow calligrapher who does some amazing calligraphy. You can see some of her work on Phawnda’s Facebook page: https: www.facebook.com/calligraphyanddesignbyphawnda

This is the card and envelope I sent my long time friend, Marge.

This is the card and envelope I sent my long time friend, Marge, for day 12 of National Letter Writing Month.

Marge is an artist friend of mine. I decided to send her one of my oops! envelopes. I spilled two drops of ink on the envelope. I wanted Marge to remember that I’m not perfect! This is one of the reasons I love making and sending hand decorated envelopes, they don’t need to be perfect because they’re “just” envelopes. I tend to be a perfectionist, but I don’t worry about that when I make envelopes because they’re going to get mashed by the postal service anyway.

This card and envelope went to Alyce, one of my blog subscribers.

This card and envelope went to Alyce, one of my blog subscribers, for day 14 of National Letter Writing Month.

This card and envelope went to Alyce. I love how the Copic markers blend together on this flower envelope. I’ve been asked where the address goes. Well, it just wraps around the petal of the flower that has Alyce’s name.

This letter and envelope went to Karen.

This letter and envelope went to Karen for day 15 of National Letter Writing Month.

Karen is one of my envelope exchange buddies. Above is the card and envelope I sent her. I love how the center of the flower almost glows.

This card and envelope went to Marilynne.

This card and envelope went to Marilynne for day 16 of National Letter Writing Month.

Marilyn was in a car accident. She’s finally home after a stay in the hospital followed by rehabilitation. I wanted to send her something fancy. My copperplate needs more practice, but I thought she’d appreciate my attempt.

This card and envelope went to Finnbadger (aka Phillip) for day 17 of National Letter Writing Month.

This card and envelope went to Finnbadger (aka Phillip) for day 17 of National Letter Writing Month.

I’ve been in a number of envelope exchanges with Phillip, aka Finnbadger. He has a blog where you can see some of his envelopes: www.envelope100.blogspot.com

This card and envelope went to Abbey for day 18 of National Letter Writing Month.

This card and envelope went to Abbey for day 18 of National Letter Writing Month.

I should have used my Slide Writer Laser Liner for Abbey’s name on the stationery. I must remember – this is just a letter and I don’t need it to be perfect.

To see the envelopes I sent out in other weeks see:
National Letter Writing Month – Week 1
National Letter  Writing Month – Week 2

Happy letter writing, Candy

 

Studio Snapshot – National Letter Writing Month (week 2)

If you have been following my blog, you know that April is National Card and Letter Writing Month. I have challenged myself to send at least one letter a day, in an envelope I have decorated, for the entire month. Here is what I sent out this past week.

This letter and envelope went to Martha for day 5 of National Letter Writing Month.

This letter and envelope went to Martha for day 5 of National Letter Writing Month.

Martha is one of the people in an envelope exchange I am participating in. I need to send my exchange envelopes out by the end of the month. My challenge to send a letter and envelope a day is a perfect reminder to get these envelopes in the mail.

This letter and envelope went to Sallie for day 6 of National Letter Writing Month.

This letter and envelope went to Sallie for day 6 of National Letter Writing Month.

Sallie is a friend I met through my blog. Last year she even made me a wonderful breakfast before I went to a Calligrapher’s Conference that was in the town she lives in.

My envelope and letter for day 7 of National Letter Writing Month went to another Sally, also in Washington.

My envelope and letter for day 7 of National Letter Writing Month went to another Sally, also in Washington.

Sally is a friend I met at a calligraphy conference many years ago. We still keep in touch.

This envelope and note (along with the banana bread) went to Gayle for day 8 of National Letter Writing Month.

This envelope and note (along with the banana bread) went to Gayle for day 8 of National Letter Writing Month.

My friend, Gayle, just had surgery. I hand delivered her get well soon letter as well as the banana bread.

My letter and envelope for day 9 of National Letter Writing Month goes to Jean, not Joan as I misspelled her name on the envelope.

My letter and envelope for day 9 of National Letter Writing Month goes to Jean, not Joan as I misspelled her name on the envelope.

If you’re a calligrapher, you’ll understand. We calligraphers concentrate on getting our letters “just so.” So much so that we tend to not think about the spelling. That’s exactly what happened here. This letter and envelope went to Jean, not Joan, Wilson. Since Jean is a calligrapher, I’m sure she’ll understand, so I sent it the way I addressed it.

My letter and envelope for day 10 of National Letter Writing Month went to Sophia.

My letter and envelope for day 10 of National Letter Writing Month went to Sophia.

Sophia is a friend who loves purple. So, I just had to send her an envelope with her name in purple.

My letter and envelope for day 11 of National Letter Writing Month went to Hans.

My letter and envelope for day 11 of National Letter Writing Month went to Hans.

Hans, like Martha, is one of the participants in my envelope exchange.

To see the envelopes I sent out in week one and later see:
National Letter Writing Month – Week 1
National Letter Writing Month – Week 3

Happy Letter Writing, Candy

Tips & Tools – Slider Writer Laser Liner Review

This past Thanksgiving, I purchased a gift for myself, a tool called the Slide Writer. It’s a tool that makes a line with a laser light. I tried it out when I first got it, then forgot about it.

The Slide Writer uses a laser light as a visible line on which to write.

The Slide Writer uses a laser light as a visible line on which to write.

Now, after realizing that my calligraphy for my envelopes was sloping a bit, I pulled it out and tried it out again. I love it! It’s perfect for getting my calligraphy straight on my envelopes!

I can slide the laser up and down and align it with the ruler on the right.

I can slide the laser up and down and align it with the ruler on the right.

I really don’t like drawing pencil lines on my envelopes. Sometimes my ink smears when I erase. When I use a colored brush on ink, the pencil lines still show. But now, it’s super easy to write in a straight line.

The light isn't quite as bright on the right side of the envelope, but it's quite visible in person. I had no problem seeing it and writing in a straight line.

The light isn’t quite as bright on the right side of the envelope, but it’s actually quite visible. I had no problem seeing it and writing in a straight line.

For anyone interested in purchasing one, I bought mine through Paper & Ink Arts. It is also available through John Neal Bookseller.

Enjoy, Candy

April Is National Card and Letter Writing Month

Last year I discovered that April is National Card and Letter Writing Month. I hadn’t realized there was such a thing. When I found out about it, I issued myself a challenge to make and send an envelope (with letter inside) every day for the month of April. Both the recipients and I had a great time. Most everyone I sent an envelope and letter to, sent one back to me. It was great fun!

I bought this Sharpie water based marker and found it wrote wonderfully even over the silver on my paste papers.

One of my favorite envelopes from last year. I used this Sharpie water based marker to write over one of my silver and blue paste papers which I made into an envelope. Simple and elegant.

I enjoyed it so much that I have decided to do it again this year. You are welcome to leave a comment below if you are interested in receiving an envelope and letter. I’ll then send you an email and you can send me your address. And maybe you’ll return the favor and send me a decorated envelope and letter in return.

I am starting my envelopes for National Card and Letter Writing Month which starts next week.

I am starting my envelopes for National Card and Letter Writing Month which starts next week.

On my Facebook page for My Paper Arts, I will be sharing a photo each day of the envelope I send out. I’ll also show some of the envelopes on my weekly Studio Snapshot here on this blog.

It’s going to be a fun month and I’d love to have you play along with me.

Happy Letter Writing, Candy