Saturday, 22 February 2014

Crazy 4 Challenges Music Inspired Oval Accordion Card & Some Calligraphy

 The challenge this week at Crazy 4 Challenges is to be 'Inspired by Music'.
I wanted to create a slightly nostalgic feel card, with the words to the song 'Happy Birthday to You' - just a good old fashioned greeting. The papers are from Crate Paper's 'Maggie Holmes' 12x12 pad.
I used Karen Burniston's Accordion Oval Card die for the card base, and that comes with the other oval layers used on the card.
I wrote the sentiment with a dip pen and white ink (more on that below.)
  Finally, I added layered vellum butterflies cut with Karen's Butterfly Accessory Dies set, from Elizabeth Craft Designs, and some paper roses.

I said in my last post that I wanted to have a go at calligraphy, and this morning a dip den came in the post, and some white ink. Having spent a while reading up on ink, this white Calligraphy Ink from Windsor and Newton seemed to be what a few professional Calligraphers use, and I was delighted at the opacity of it!
The pen nib which arrived is a Brause No. 361, also known as the Blue Pumpkin, because of its colour and shape. Quite a few calligraphers seem to like this one, though I did just read that it might not be best for beginners... oh well! It felt a bit stiff at first, but after a while I got more used to it. I have on the way a Brause EF66, which also seems to be a favourite.

When I was a teenager, I had a cartridge pen with a broad nib, and it feels completely different using a fine nib in a dip pen! Here are my first attempts. (In case you wondered, my middle name is Caton - pronouced 'Kay-tun'. My Mum is a keen geneaologist, and Caton is a surname in my family history.)

There are some fantastic styles of modern calligraphy around which I love, such as this by Anne Robin.

This is a practice sheet I did this morning, copying sentiments etc. from the internet. It's going to take a bit of time to develop a style of my own which I'm happy with, but this was so much fun!

You can see here how thick the ink is. I think it can be watered down if necessary.

The wreckage that was my dining table this morning! (I'm not a tidy worker!)

Some of the products used:



  1. Loving your card today Helen as usual :) ... you are definitely rockin' that calligraphy ... is there anything you can't do :)

  2. Beautiful card! I just bought these dies. Can't wait to try them....been watching you and Frances knock them out of the park!

  3. I agree with're incredibly talented.

  4. Yeah, way to eat the whole talent buffet! Ha. Love your Oval Accordion and your amazing calligraphy. That ink does look thick and I love it that way!

  5. Your creativity knows no bounds. Love the card and great work on the Calligraphy.

  6. fab fancy fold your shared work with calligraphy......can tell you were having fun