tips for buying calligraphy and lettering supplies

So you’re interested in lettering and calligraphy but maybe there’s a barrier keeping you from getting started. Supplies.

Where do I buy supplies? What should I buy?

I’ll let you in on a secret, it’s easier to get started with supplies than you might think! Keep reading to hear about a couple of tips I have for purchasing supplies + to find out where I shop!


1 - Start simple! 

Do you have pencils, paper, and Crayola markers at home? You can literally start with those! Don’t let anyone fool you into thinking you need special “calligraphy” supplies. Most of us have materials already hanging out in our home, so get started with those!

2 - Check out your local craft and art supply stores.

A lot of great supplies are available online, but you might be surprised at the optionS that your local art supply stores carry! I used to order all my supplies online from the USA (hey there exchange rate + shipping/duty fees) - but now I get most of mine from local stores. Bonus: you’re supporting your local economy!

3 - Experiment!

Getting material suggestions from fellow artists is great, but I think you can also experiment and purchase random pens and materials until you find the ones you really like! Every artist has a different style and preference for materials, so one artist’s fave material might not be the right fit for another artist. Find what fits your style and preferences best! I’m constantly buying new pens trying to find the ones that work best for me. 


Artist’s Emporium

This is a store local to Winnipeg and it has basically everything I need. If you’re a local, shop here! They have an amazing selection of brush pens and inks. Bonus: you can also order from them online!


These are all over the place (which makes them super accessible for many of us) and carry a lot of great paint pens, chalk pens, canvases, and paper. 

John Neal Books (online)

This is an online craft supply store based in the states. I typically get my calligraphy nibs and holders here, and they have other great helpful tools like ink holders! Browse through their calligraphy tools section - there’s so much good stuff!

Amazon (online)

Amazon is typically my last resort if I can’t find what I’m looking for anywhere else. There are a lot of reasons I don’t love Amazon (which I won’t get into here, lol) but it’s a great option for you if you can’t find any art stores nearby. A problem with Amazon is that you have to know what you’re looking for. So if you just want to browse calligraphy supplies and pick some to experiment and play with, I’d suggest John Neal Books or Artist’s Emporium! 

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Calligraphy, TipsJennifer Siemens