Modern Calligraphy Workshops – autumn 2019

calligraphy workshop in progress with Claire Gould at Swallows and Artisans

Would you love to have a little go at modern calligraphy? With Christmas on the horizon (I know!) there is so much opportunity to practice – and your folks and friends are going to LOVE their gorgeous gift tags when you strut your calligraphy stuff!

I’d love to teach you modern calligraphy this autumn. I have four of my own workshops coming up around the UK, as well as a few extra dates I’ve been booked as a host for (exciting!!!!)

Upcoming dates for my beginners calligraphy workshops are –

7th September – Nantwich, Cheshire
6th October – Smithills Hall (Bolton)
11th October – Manchester
19th October – Arnside, Cumbria
27th November – Coniston, Cumbria
30th November – Manchester

If you fancy getting your craft on, come and join me! You’ll learn a wonderful skill (which you can use for your wedding!) and have a lovely relaxing day out. And every workshop is perfect for absolute beginners!

In each calligraphy class we’ll start with assembling a pen and spooning up ink. We’ll make flowy, swirly shapes and then letters and words. I’ll show you how, with demonstrations at every stage of the process. Best of all, you get to keep your modern calligraphy set at the end of the class! Included are your pen + nib, ink and worksheets.

There’ll be a little pop-up shop at the end so you can buy colourful inks, spare nibs and penholders, books and more worksheets if you like.

Class sizes are limited so everyone has some personal tuition – and no matter what your skill level (we all learn at different speeds) I will help you along the way!

The November calligraphy workshops will be Christmassy – we’ll write cards, gift tags and make a gorgeous glitter bauble to decorate your tree!

I can’t wait to see you there!

Book your modern calligraphy workshop here:

7th September – Nantwich – Tickets
6th October – Bolton – Tickets
11th October – Manchester – Tickets
19th October – Arnside – Tickets
27th November – Coniston – Tickets
30th November – Manchester – Tickets

Header image credit Nicole Colwell Photography, styled by Lily & Sage, featured on Wedding Sparrow

Brush lettering, and Christmas calligraphy workshops!

I’m going to brighten up my calligraphy workshops from now with a little more variation in the styles we learn and the tools we use on the day – so here’s our exciting schedule of modern calligraphy classes for the rest of the year!

September 15th – write your own gold ink greetings card

at Swallows & Artisans, Lanehead, Coniston, Cumbria from 2 o’clock until 5.

I have some gorgeous blue cards and softly shining gold inks to use in this class – so we’ll spend the first half of the session learning how to use the dip pen and nib with black ink and letter templates, and then crack open the shiny inks and play!

More info & tickets

Facebook Event Page

October 20th – calligraphy and brush lettering class

at Manchester Craft & Design Centre from 1 o’clock until half past 3

This workshop will be all about using two different calligraphy tools to create beautiful, on-trend modern letter styles. The dip pen and nib is my favourite, and I use this combo every day! Brush lettering is so much fun, and some students find it much more easy to learn… I wonder which will be your fave?

More info & tickets

Facebook Event Page

Photo credit: Melissa Beattie Photography

December 7th – Christmas calligraphy class

at Manchester Craft & Design Centre from 1 o’clock until half past 3

This will be a really festive session aimed at crafty folks who make cards and would love to add their own beautiful hand lettering to their designs! We’ll use metallic inks, coloured cards and gift tags in a vibrant or frosty colour palette!

More info & tickets

Facebook Event Page


Summer & autumn 2018 calligraphy workshop spaces

I was chatting the other day about the classroom at Manchester Craft & Design Centre where I run my modern calligraphy workshops. It’s a beautiful, bright spot with white walls and bright windows – perfect for writing.

This August I’m launching Calligraphy Summer School – a very different class at a brand new venue. Ziferblat itself is wonderfully eclectic, with a main living room full of mismatched armchairs, sofas and coffee tables. The atmosphere of the place really suits the decor… and it just feels wonderfully creative.

My Ziferblat calligraphy workshop will be held in their classroom – a properly nostalgic room filled with desks and with one of those rollover blackboards which I can’t wait to write on!!!

Join me for calligraphy summer school – a 90 minute informal class at Ziferblat Edge St – on August 18th at 2pm (tickets £35)

Or come to Manchester Craft & Design Centre for a full (2+ hour) workshop with personalised calligraphy kits for every student to take home – on September 7th at 1pm (tickets £65)

A calligrapher’s journey – my story

Calligraphy workshops are fun. We have a chat, and the more the group is talking during the class, the better – because as you focus on something other than writing, you relax and suddenly your calligraphy becomes more instinctive and natural.

Image credit: Zehra Photography

So we talk about our jobs and lives and why we’re all there learning calligraphy. And I’m always asked how I got started in calligraphy.

I’ve always loved words – from spelling tests at primary school to learning joined-up writing, I was hooked. I read hundreds of books when I was young – weekly trips to our village library were a treat!

Then I chose to learn languages through school, while my friends went on to study art and design. I developed a bit of a fascination with how words are strung together and the nuance of meaning, while my friends showed me their typography projects – and I was hooked.

I dabbled with broad edged calligraphy as a teenager – a brief hobby (along with lace making and playing the flute!) which didn’t last long. But ever since, I’ve been super conscious of my handwriting. I’m a messy writer – and my scribbles will slant to the right, or to the left, or be super straight and neat, or girly and loopy depending on my mood!

Despite stuffing my old pens and nibs in a drawer for years, I later discovered calligraphy is like riding a bike. You don’t forget. So when I picked up a pen again 20 years later it felt natural and I fell in love with lettering all over again.

I was working in marketing at the time and took voluntary redundancy back in 2005. I picked up my calligraphy pens again (and bought a few new ones!) – writing wedding invitations for friends and working on traditional calligraphy poems as practice. In a year I built my business, learned about web design and coding, and began working on weddings locally and nationally.

Credit: Zehra Photography

At first I only had a website. Over the years my brand has grown and I now have a Facebook page, Instagram account, Etsy store and Not On The High Street shop.

My style of lettering has changed so much over the last 12 years: I began with gothic and italic lettering – which was totally on trend for weddings even such a short time ago! – and moved through Copperplate and Spencerian lettering to an organic, modern calligraphy style over the years.

As well as writing for brides and grooms, I write poems for anniversaries and gifts. I teach workshops, I sell calligraphy kits, inks and nibs.

I also write a wedding blog, which has helped me make contacts in the wedding industry and grow my calligraphy business.

And I’ve plans to try new things – in writing and crafts and life – over the next few years. I try to say yes to every new opportunity to make sure my story will continue!

Join me for a calligraphy workshop in Manchester: online booking & info – modern calligraphy workshops

New calligraphy workshops in Manchester: 26th February 2016

FOR LATEST WORKSHOP DATES SEE Manchester Calligraphy Workshops

I’m thrilled to be able to announce another calligraphy workshop in Manchester on the 26th of February and I’d love you to come!

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Workshops in 2015 were fantastic: everyone got to grips with their calligraphy pens quickly and there were some amazing scripts taking shape… we even played with flourishing and different lettering styles, which was so much fun to teach! There’ll be more of the same in 2016, and this is your chance to come and see what it’s all about!

To book, visit or email me:

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The February workshop will be for absolute beginners once again. It’s going to be lots of fun and I’d LOVE for you to come and join me for a day playing with pens and learning gorgeous contemporary scripts. We’ll be at the Manchester Craft & Design Centre in the Northern Quarter from 11am until 3pm and there are 14 spaces available – booking starts today!

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You’ll learn:

How to hold, wiggle and write with a traditional dip pen
The basics of contemporary lettering
It’s a hands-on day so I’ll be demonstrating a little, but most of the time you’ll be writing and I’ll be giving pointers and helping you

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I’ll provide:

Calligraphy pens, paper, inks
Practice sheets and examples

You’ll need:

Just your lovely self
Lunch won’t be provided, but there’s a fabulous cafe on site – full details will be provided on booking.

You’ll take home:

Your pen and nib set, paper and practice sheets
Guidelines for practicing at home
The beautifully lettered goodies you’ve written on the day!

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The price is £59 payable on booking. To book either visit my Etsy shop or email me: I can accept payments by bank transfer or PayPal, whichever is easiest for you.

The class will begin at 11am and finish at 3pm. The location is very easily accessible in Manchester’s Northern Quarter – details and directions will be provided on booking.

There is space for 14 students so please book early!

I’ll be teaching the class myself and will be there all day to help you learn your calligraphy skills 🙂

Book your place today! click here to reserve your place


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Book your place today! click here to reserve your place