Happy Monday friends! One of the comments I get most often on Instagram is about my hand lettering and the chalkboard art I create for my home. Truth be told, I don’t have the best “every day” hand writing, so trust me when I tell you that you don’t need great penmanship to learn the art of beautiful hand lettering.
I have this giant chalkboard on the wall behind my desk which is directly visible from our front door. It is one of my favorite ways to change up my decor with the seasons and create beautiful messages to greet guests as they enter our home. I just changed my chalkboard art to this sweet and simple Fall greeting, and I thought it would be the perfect time to walk you through my process and give you a few tips on how to create beautiful hand lettering & chalkboard art for yourself.
Research some calligraphy alphabets on Pinterest to get an idea of some styles you like. From there, you can try to mimic some that you like and play around doodling the alphabet to get comfortable with forming the letters. Here are a few of my calligraphy alphabets that I have doodled. You are more than welcome to use them as a guide!
Sketch your message out using a pen and paper first. This will help you get comfortable with forming the letters, the flow, and the spacing before you begin on your chalkboard. I find it easiest to work with a calligraphy marker and lined paper for this step.
Now you are ready to start on your chalkboard! I got mine from Hobby Lobby a while ago but I haven’t seen it there lately.
Here are a few similar in various sizes:
Distressed Natural Chalkboard | Menu Style Brown Barnwood Chalkboard | The Rustic Heritage Home Chalkboard With Hooks | Vintage Framed Slate Kitchen Chalkboard
And of course my cute little assistant helping me get my board ready 🙂 :
Lay your chalkboard down on a flat surface. If you have a large chalkboard like mine, I find it easiest to work on the floor so that you can move freely around the board. Use printer paper to space out your words and keep your writing straight.
Use a Chalk Marker as this will create the cleanest lines and allow for easy mistake fixes. First, handwrite your message following the flow of the calligraphy writing you sketched out, but only using single pen strokes (aka: don’t worry about making them look “calligraphy-esque” with heavier lines just yet. That will come next. At this point all of your letters should be skinny strokes just like normal handwriting. Keep a damp paper towel and a dry paper towel handy so that you can fix mistakes as you go.
This is where you will go back and add the hand lettered calligraphy effect you your letters. In calligraphy, the thin lines are on the upstrokes and the thicker lines are on the downstrokes.
Here is how you will create that effect with a chalk marker: Starting at the beginning of your first word, hover your marker above the chalkboard and begin tracing (in the air) over your letter. If your pen strokes are going up, don’t touch the board with your marker, but as soon as you hit a downstroke, place the tip of your chalk marker down and create another line connecting it to the existing downstroke as shown.
Once you have created a thick line for each downstroke, then you will go back through and fill them all in.
After you have filled in all of the letters, go back through with your damp paper towel and clean up any mistakes or smudges.
When you are finished, your letters will have a beautiful hand lettered / calligraphy look and you will have beautiful chalkboard art to display in your home.
Hang your chalkboard back up, step back and admire your amazing hand lettering skills, and start brainstorming what you will write on your chalkboard next!
This hand lettering technique can be used on anything from chalkboards, to signs, to stationary, and beyond. You will simply need to change up your tool. For signs you can use a paint pen, for stationary a calligraphy marker like I mentioned earlier, and so on. Get creative, have fun, and put your new hand lettering skills to work! If you create anything using the hand lettering tips I talked about in this post, I would love to see your work! Feel free to tag me on in your photos on Instagram @belleamourblog.
Have a great week!
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