Plan it into your schedule
August 10, 2020

In my previous posts, I talk about how my organization level is in high gear now that I’m back to using colored pens to keep track of entries by type. Example: green = finance, black = corporate, dark blue = human resources, fuchsia/pink = personal, teal = NAWBO, and purple = holidays. To make my planner more interesting and fun (and not so sterile), I use stickers. You can find stickers online for just about everything — holidays, vacation, special occasions, fitness, etc. Some of the stickers I use are in hand lettering fonts. I LOVE these types of fonts and I’ve used them in computer programs, but have not tried to create them myself.

Do you know anyone who gets into creative moods where they want to try new things (hint — you’re reading the blog of one of these people). Last spring, I couldn’t find artwork for my guest bathroom. I went to the art store, bought some paint and a canvas, and I created it myself. So it’s not unusual that I decided I to learn hand lettering. I have a lot of friends who know how to do it, as well as calligraphy. It’s so beautiful and creative! My handwriting is fairly close to hand lettering so I thought that learning the fundamentals might not be so hard. [Um, yeah… not hard at all (sarcasm font)].

So where do I start?

If you look up hand lettering online you’ll see a lot of posts that say to watch YouTube videos. So, off to YouTube I went in search of videos about Hand Lettering for Beginners. There are A LOT of videos — some better than others. While they gave me general information and tips, getting from video to paper didn’t seem so simple. I needed a book and thankfully Amazon has several to choose from. If you want to know if you have found the right one, try reading the reviews. I start with the 1 star reviews to see what people didn’t like about the product.

I ended up buying “Hand Lettering 101: An Introduction to the Art of Creative Lettering” by Chalkfulloflove.  (I’m not paid by this author to advertise this book) It’s a spiral-bound workbook with illustrations. 

But I’m impatient!!

I use Sundays to set up and decorate my planner pages. The book arrives later today and I want to get started NOW. Honestly, the real reason I’m learning hand lettering is to write “WEEKEND” between the Saturday and Sunday sections. Yeah, I know it’s a lot for only one word, but I’m using stickers so by learning how to do it myself I’ll save some money.

Setting up

Long before I decided to learn hand lettering, I purchased the Erin Condren Dual-Tip Brush Pens (6-Pack – Mixed Colors) from Amazon. They have a fine tip on one side and a medium tip on the other. I didn’t know what I would use them for when I bought them, but that’s never stopped me before. [cue laughing] Writing with them is different from other pens and take some getting use to. Amazon still sells them; I don’t see them on the Erin Condren website.

When I ordered the workbook, I also purchased some Tombox brush pens (a 2-pack of black, and a 10 pack assorted colors). This gives me a wide assortment of pens to work with.

I am also a big pen collector (I probably have way more than I need or will use) and have been running out of space in my pen holders. My solution was to re-purpose a metal planter by lining it with plastic cups. Voilà! Instant pen holder. And it’s cool looking!! (see picture) This consolidates a lot of my colored pens into one place, which makes it much easier to find what I’m looking for.

Getting Started

So the only thing left to do (besides waiting on the workbook to arrive) is to try my new pens. I have extra clipboards at home so I loaded one with copy paper to have a solid writing surface. I started by tracing the font on a sticker using my tablet to get used to the motions. From there I moved to ink pen and paper.

I’m pretty happy with my initial results, which I talk about In the video below. Information about the pens and stickers is also included in the video. If you have done or want to learn how to do hand lettering, leave me a comment about your experience with it either here or on YouTube.

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