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Nathan Wright
Nathan Wright

Where To Buy Calligraphy Pens

Hi Max, may I ask what the difference is between a chisel tip, a parallel tip and a calligraphy pen like the Staedtler calligraphy duo with 2mm and 3.5mm tips as far as hand lettering is concerned?Thanks, Rosa

where to buy calligraphy pens

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Hey Cris, Sorry for replying so late. I am writing a gift guide as we speak, however, in the meantime I would suggest that you go with a dip pen rather than a fountain pen. Dip pens are in my opinion a more professional tool for calligraphy than fountain pens.

Just one minor note. After I read this article I bought the oblique calligraphy pen only to find out that left-handed people fare MUCH better with the standard calligraphy pen that is not offset since lefties write at a 55-60 degree slant naturally.Everything else has been very helpful to this left-handed newbie!

Hand lettering differs from calligraphy in that it is the act of drawing individual letters by hand rather than writing them in a continuous way. Although there are basic principles to hand lettering, each decorative letter can be treated as its own mini illustration, allowing the artist freedom of expression outside of a specific set of letters.

Blick offers a range of tools for both calligraphy and hand lettering, including dip pens, fountain pens, cartridge pens, brush pens, sumi pens, nibs, and pen holders, plus inks, ink cartridges, calligraphy and hand lettering sets, and other tools of the trade.

Practice the traditional art of calligraphy with sets from brands such as Lamy and Sheaffer. Sets come with different nib widths so that you can try your hand at different calligraphy techniques, and learn the basics from the booklets provided.

When I see a problem to be solved I can't help myself but try to find a way to fix it. The problem I found with traditional oblique calligraphy pens was that they are hard to adjust to fit the plethora of different calligraphy nib sizes. So I designed mine to be easily and quickly adjustable, by using a clamping mechanism similar to a nut and bolt the pen allows you to simply change between nibs without having to resort to a pair of pliers for every time you like to make an adjustment! The brass nib holder can also be revolved, this is probably the feature calligraphers appreciate the most as it means you can customise the writing angle (again without the need for pliers) so that the pen adjusts to the angle you like to hold the pen rather than you having too adjust for it. There are also recommended angles to hold the pen for certain calligraphy styles and this means you can simply adjust the pen to suit. If you're a left handed calligrapher who writes overhand the nib holder can also be flipped over so that it sits right hand side of the pen, this feature allows you to write slanted style calligraphy without smearing all of your beautiful work!

This is a very common question and one that at Tom's Studio as it can make a big difference to the pen you decide to buy. Fortunately we have lovely designs for both straight calligraphy pens and oblique pen holders so whatever you decide you'll know you have the perfect tool for the job.

A straight calligraphy pen is a more simple design that holds a nib at a straight angle to the paper. This type of 'pen holder' (another name for a calligraphy pen) is well suited for upright scripts, such as Roman, Modern, and Gothic scripts, where the strokes are primarily vertical or horizontal. If you're a leftie with an underwriter grip you will most likely prefer a straight pen for slanted styles of calligraphy (below) as the angle you'll naturally hold the pen is suited to these.

An oblique pen holder, on the other hand, holds the nib at an angle, usually between 15 to 30 degrees, relative to the writing surface. This angle allows for more comfortable and efficient writing of scripts that have slanted strokes, such as Copperplate or Spencerian. In other words, you don't have to strain your wrist to achieve the perfect writing angle. The slant of the nib also helps to create variations in line thickness and is used to produce a more expressive and decorative style when writing on an angle. If you're a left-handed calligrapher who writes overhand, my oblique pen holders also work perfectly as the brass nib holder can be flipped so that it sits on the right hand side of the pen. This allows you to write at the correct angle for slanted-style calligraphy. Win!

The oblique pens are fitted with my unique universal flange design which holds almost every kind of nib (big and small) and allows you to adjust the angle of the nib, further increasing the 'glide factor' of your writing.

(This is a guest post by Adam Di Stefano. Adam is a writer, armchair philosopher, former lawyer, entrepreneur, marketing professional, obsessive compulsive, and consummate generalist. He has also recently become addicted to fountain pens. You can read more of his ramblings on his blog at The Happiest Man in the World.)

I have always loved the look and the mystique of fountain pens. As a writer, I have a sentimental attachment to the written word, and all things that go with it. I've always had a bizarre fascination with stationery stores. I own far too many notebooks, and while you would have to drag me kicking and screaming into a shopping mall, I'll happily spend money on office supplies. As such, maybe it was a foregone conclusion that I would some day grow fond of fountain pens.

If you're like me, you'll read a lot, you'll feel lost, and you'll be intimidated. And then eventually, after months and months of reading stuff that you barely understand, you'll decide to take the plunge and buy a pen and see what happens. You'll make some mistakes, but eventually after some trial and error, you'll start to realize just what these fountain pen aficionados are so crazy about. Or, you'll give up because it's too much hassle and regret having waster your money.

That's why I decided to write this. My goal is to give someone who wants to try fountain pens for the first time a step-by-step guide on how to go from true beginner to early-stage addiction in a single concise article, all the while removing some of the intimidation and false starts that come with plunging in on our own.

I could write a whole glossary just on the terms and terminology used in the fountain pen world, but that's not my goal here. My goal is simply to give you the most basic definitions you'll need to understand the rest of this article. I want to focus on things that someone who doesn't know much about fountain pens wouldn't know, while not getting into details that are unnecessary for someone just getting started.

The nib is the part of the pen that touches the paper, and that the ink comes out of. On most pens it will be stainless steel, and on higher end pens it will be gold. By changing a nib, you can completely change the experience of writing with a pen. One of the first decisions you'll have to make when buying a fountain pen is the size of the nib's tip.

On most standard fountain pens, nibs can come in various points from extra fine to bold. The tip of the nib will determine just how much ink is released, and the thickness of the lines that you will put down. In addition to extra fine to bold, there are also a variety of other nib types like a cursive italic, or a stub. These special grinds are best suited for specific handwriting styles.

A converter changes a cartridge filling system into refillable solution. There are various types of converters and filling systems, but the main purpose remains the same: a refillable reservoir that holds the ink that your pen uses to write. Some pens come with converters, others need to be ordered. For instance, a Pilot Metropolitan comes with both a cartridge and an empty converter, whereas a Lamy Safari comes only with a cartridge. If you want to refill a Safari, you either need to buy more cartridges, or you need to buy a converter plus ink.

One of the reasons you'll have gotten into fountain pens in the first place is that they look so damn cool. Unfortunately, for most of us, the idea of jumping into buying a $200+ pen without knowing anything about it isn't so easy. As a result, it's probably a good idea to wet your feet with what I call a "starter pen."

In my travels around the pen internets, there appear to be two pens that come back again and again as great starters: the Lamy Safari and the Pilot Metropolitan. There are other good pens in the sub $50 range but these two appear to be the best to act as starters for a few different reasons, which I won't get into here.

In all seriousness, either of these pens work very well as a starter pen. I think if I had to recommend one to someone, I'd probably recommend the Metropolitan. It's slightly cheaper. It's better looking in a very classic way. And out of the box it comes with a cartridge as well as a converter, so you can play with both filling systems.

The Lamy Safari is slightly more expensive, is a bit odd looking, and depending on your colour choice, can look a bit cheap. The Lamy Safari comes with a Lamy cartridge and if you want to refill the pen using bottled ink, you'll need to buy a converter separately, which will add to the price of the pen.

Each of these pens comes in a variety of colours and looks, but the most important decision you'll likely need to make is what size nib you want. I purchased mine with a fine nib. As a general rule of thumb, if you have tiny handwriting, you'll want a finer nib. If you have bigger handwriting, you'll want a bigger nib (you probably don't want to go higher than medium, though). Either way, the goal here is to get to know how the pen writes, so pick one and don't worry too much about it.

As I started using my new pen, I began to notice something that I had never really taken stock of using my old ballpoints or gel pens: paper quality. I soon found that some papers worked great with my pen, while others made it feel scratchy, or caused the ink to bleed.

So, if you don't have to write in cursive, why am I telling you to adapt your writing style? Well, simply because a fountain pen writes differently than a ballpoint pen. The ink flows more, and tends to dry slower. Furthermore, fountain pens need to be held at a certain angle so that the nib contacts the paper in the right way to allow the ink to flow properly. 041b061a72

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