Have you been wondering what it's like to work with a calligrapher or what the process entails? Have a project in mind? I prefer to be very transparent with my clients about my processes when working on their projects, as I want them to understand what they are paying for and the value behind what I do. So, I am starting a "Frequently Asked Questions" series where I am completely transparent in my answers to the questions I am most often asked by my potential, current and past clients. Continue reading below to find out the details!
What kinds of calligraphy projects can you make for me?
I specialize in envelope calligraphy and stationery design, so I work with a lot of brides and wedding planners on invitations and envelopes. But truthfully, I can create anything you want! I can create custom gifts, signage, printables, wall art, decor for your home or office... anything! If you have something in mind, we can work together to create it :)
How far ahead should I book your services?
For wedding invitations and envelopes, it would be best to contact me at least 5-6 months in advance (or more) to ensure that you are able to book a spot in my schedule. However, the sooner the better, as these blocks of time can fill up fast, especially during wedding season! For other calligraphy projects, it really depends on your deadline and the time I have available in my schedule. But don't hesitate to reach - we should be able to work something out!
How long does it take you to complete an order?
For envelope calligraphy, here is a general breakdown of he turnaround time for your envelopes:
- 50 envelopes – 1-2 weeks
- 50-150 envelopes – 2-3 weeks
- 150-250 envelopes – 3-4 weeks
- 250-350 envelopes – 4-5 weeks
- 350+ envelopes 5 or more weeks
Other calligraphy work is truly dependent on the individual project itself. Once you have a project in mind, contact me as soon as you can and I can provide you with a turnaround time!
If I need items quickly, can I have them rushed?
Generally, I will try to accommodate rush orders (within reason) depending on my schedule, and at an extra charge. Typically, rush jobs are considered anything needed within 1-2 weeks. If you need something done quickly within that time frame, contact me as soon as possible to check for availability.
What kinds of calligraphy styles do you offer?
I am currently working to create a whole list of different calligraphy styles for you to choose from, but I can generally create any style you're looking for. I can provide any style from classic and elegant to modern and fun. Just let me know what you would like!
Can you copy a font that is used on my invitations?
As an artist, I hate the word "copy" as I refuse to copy another artist's work, but depending on the style of the font and the envelopes you are using, sometimes that font can be used as inspiration for your calligraphy style.
What kind of ink do you use for your calligraphy? Is it waterproof? Do you ever use metallic ink?
I like to use waterproof Sumi and India ink, gouache and watercolor. We can also use metallic inks, and we can match any color of ink that you would like, including metallics like gold, silver, copper or rose gold. If for some reason the ink you’ve requested will not work out how you are envisioning it, we will work with you to come up with a solution.
Can you write on metallic envelopes?
Do I provide the envelopes, placecards, etc. or do you?
I do prefer that you provide me with your paper products. However, if you need help choosing, I am happy to take care of this step for you, or I can recommend paper suppliers for you to buy from.
How do I pay you for my order?
I will send you an online invoice once your order and numbers have been finalized. You can either pay by credit card or by mailing a check to my office. If paying by check, the check will need to be received in the mail and cleared by the bank before your envelopes can be sent back to you.
Do I need to put down a deposit?
Yes. If you would like to reserve time in my calendar for your project, and to ensure the completion of that project by your specified due date, a 50% non-refundable deposit is required.
How do I get my envelopes to you, and how do I get them back?
My office is located in Omaha, NE, so if you are local to the area or within an hour away, we can meet up. If you are not local or within an hour away, you can mail them to my office. Once you book a spot in my calendar, I will provide our shipping address to you. Once your project is complete, you can either pick up your items at my office location, or I can ship them back to you. Please note that tracking and insurance will need to be added to any packages that we ship to you.
Do I need to provide extra envelopes, placecards, etc.?
Yes, please! I ask that you provide me with at least 20% extra envelopes/place cards/etc. above the count of your list to account for ink splatters, human errors or last-minute additions to the list.
What format should I put my guest list in?
Please provide your guest in either Word or Excel. Please format the list(s) the way you’ll want the envelopes to be written out. For example, if you would like for me to use an ampersand instead of “and” between Mr. & Mrs., please use an ampersand on your list. If you would like Apartment 112 to be written out completely (versus abbreviating it to Apt. and keeping it on the same line as the street address), please spell it out that way and give it its own line on your list. If you would like for us to spell out the names of the states, please spell them out on your list, etc, etc..
The reasons we ask to have the list(s) prepared this way are for a few reasons: first, it’s really difficult for me to read across a spreadsheet as we work, so we much prefer for the outer envelope list to be stacked like this.:
City, State Zip
Second, we will be writing everything out exactly as you have it on your list - that way, your finished envelopes appear just as you want them. Also, please make sure that everything is spelled completely and correctly, including names, street names, cities, states, etc. I cannot be held responsible for errors in the document that you provide me. Don’t worry, we will go over all of this again when you place your order, and I can also provide a template for each! :)
I've heard a lot of stories about envelopes written in calligraphy getting lost in the mail - does the post office have trouble reading calligraphy?
This is a tough question, but typically, they can read calligraphy just fine. If an envelope gets kicked out by the machine, a human will inspect it personally for legibility. As long as the zip code is legible, it will be sent to that zip code. From there, if it is still not machine-legible, it will be read by hand and delivered. Unfortunately, any mass mailing, calligraphy or no calligraphy, will always end up with some MIA envelopes that disappear into the “black hole” of the UPS mailing system. Please know that I CANNOT guarantee delivery dates on behalf of USPS, nor can I be held responsible for delays by UPS. Once an item leaves my hands, I have the same tracking information as you and cannot provide updates beyond what is listed on the USPS tracking website. Additionally, I will not provide cancellation or refunds because of delays by USPS. Please message me in the event that something does happen, and I will do my best to help you find a solution.
If I am already working with an invitation designer, can I still work with you to provide calligraphy for part of our invitation and to match that style for addressing our envelopes?
No problem! I love doing spot calligraphy, and would be thrilled to work with you and your invitation designer. Make sure to mention this detail when you are booking your project with me!
How do I book your services or request a custom project?
You can reach out to me using my contact form on the “Calligraphy and Hand Lettering” services page, or via a direct email to email@example.com. I will respond within 48 hours with my availability, a custom quote and an estimated turnaround time. I do book my calendar up to nine months in advance, filling it on a first-come, first-serve basis. I would love to save a spot for you, so make sure to contact me as soon as you can!
I love custom projects! Feel free to use the contact form on my “Let’s Chat” page, or send me a direct email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will get back to you within 48 hours with my availability, a custom quote and an estimated turnaround time.
I want to learn calligraphy! Do you offer workshops or classes?
I am hoping to start teaching in-person workshops within the next year or so, and will also be launching an e-course and an e-book on beginner calligraphy and hand lettering. Be sure to sign up for my newsletter to be the first to hear when I begin offering these workshops! :)