Handlettering is booming and I know many people who try their hand at it. It’s a perfect way to practice handwriting, pen control and create a nice lettering for a bullet journal spread. Instagram and Pinterest are filled with tutorials, inspiration and worksheets. In this Blogmas post, I want to highlight a few items that anyone who wants to get into hand-lettering or already dabble in it, will appreciate.
Chrystal Elizabeth’s Brush Lettering Made Simple
Chrystal Elizabeth is an hand-lettering artist who I follow on Instagram. She posts real-time videos and has worksheets in her shop. She recently released her book Brush Lettering Made Simple and I think it has everything that you’ll need to go from a beginner to expert level. It has ten different fonts to vary with styles in your artwork. She helps you to draw the letters (very different from writing!) and connecting them to make it look fancy. I like Chrystal’s work because it’s bold, vibrant and varies every time. She has a good eye for font combinations and use of space. Most of it is explained in her book and I’ve yet to see a hand lettering book that’s as complete as this one. If you do know of one, leave me the title in the comments!
If the book is too much for your budget, consider a pen set with a few worksheets to learn a new font. Print them on high-quality paper and send them the original file later so they can print it themselves.
Check out Chrystal’s book on her website.
Check out the video below to see one of the many techniques Chrystal uses and explains in her book.
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Seasons 💙 What is your favorite season? I used to say Winter because living in California the Winter was the best because the temps would finally go down. But now that I love in Washington, definitely Fall because the temps are the same as a CA Winter and there's beautiful color in the trees and rain and wonderfulness 🥰💕 . Also I wrote out this word so much, all I see is Sea Sons and now I'm thinking of Aquaman 😂💙 Can't wait to see it one of these days!! . . Day 27 of #happyletteringchallenge with us @happyletteringchallenge 💙 . . Materials @karinmarkers Brush Marker Pros @princetonbrush Heritage Watercolor Brush – Size 2 @cansonpaper_northamerica XL Watercolor Paper . . . . . #seasons #karinmarkers #brushlettering #brushcalligraphy #brushletteringvideo #modernlettering #moderncalligtaphy #modernscript #handlettering #lettering #handtype #handmadefont #typespire #typematters #calligraphyvideo #brushscript #brushpen #letteringvideos #calligraphy #letteringart #tyxca #typographydesign #typographyinspired #artistsofinstagram #showusyourtype #satisfyingvideos #chrystalizabeth_brushlettering
The most famous brands are Pentel (fude touch), Zebra and Tombow. These brands have pens with a softer brush point that allows you to create line variation seen in so many hand lettering works. Brush pens do require a bit of practice before you can use them as the professionals do on Instagram. That’s why brush pens are always a good gift.
If you don’t know the preference of the recipient, get different sizes of pens (superfine, fine and medium). Maybe they don’t have a preference yet and they can try all of them to see which fits their style best.
Ecoline brush markers, Sakura Koi brush pens and the Tombow dual brush pens are well known coloured pens used in hand-lettering. I’ve seen these in my bookstore in the bullet journal area, which makes sense since most people use them to decorate their pages. If you’re buying these for yourself, make sure your journal has a good quality paper that can handle the amount of ink from the pens. Sharpies are notorious for ghosting (showing through on the other side of the page). These markers are also more prone to ghosting than regular pens.
Most of these brands sell their pens a piece or in sets. For a holiday gift, I recommend buying a set so they have different colours that match with each other. It’s easier to start with a matching colour palette than trying to create something with a mismatch of colours.
If you’re looking for a notebook with the perfect paper as a bullet journal, check out my second Blogmas post on Citrus Book Bindery!