Monday, July 26, 2010

Hand Lettering by Marci Donley and DeAnn Singh and Thank You Notes by Jan Stephenson and Amy Appelyard

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This review could have been done as two separate reviews - one on each of these book- but, quite honestly, I loved them both a lot and they both seem to go hand in hand  - and they are about  two of my favorite things - lovely lettering and really nice, snail mailed, hand made, cards - so I decided to review them both together. I collect books on lettering and calligraphy. I love lettering and I try to improve my own beginner calligraphy as often as I can. I was curious what this book was going to be like. I LOVE it! The authors - and Lark Books - did an excellent job! 

"Hand Lettering" is really well thought out and is a really nice, easy to use, non intimidating book on lettering. The table of contents ( all photos can be double clicked for a better view!) is really comprehensive. The beginning of the book is about, of course, the basics. The sections on various pens is one of the most complete I have ever seen - and all sorts of pens, markers, brushes and fountain pen calligraphy pens are discussed in detail - along with some more unique writing implements like dental stimulators and pieces of sponge. A lovely section about papers in included of course, along with a section about measuring devices, a section that covers all of the types of cutting tools you might want to use and how to put together a "ready the letter" box of supplies.
This book is so full of so much great information and so many really wonderful alphabet styles that I can't imagine how the got it all into a book of this size! You're right I am a bit 'gushy' over this book and, quite honestly, I was not certain that I would be. I don't generally hand out 5 stars very easily - but this book (and the next too for that matter) really do deserve the. This book will be a "must have" addition to the library to calligraphy beginners and scrapbookers as well as to more advanced calligraphers. I highly recommend this one - it's staying here with me !

This alphabet below really brought back day-glo memories!

My favorite types of Druidic alphabets
Here is the "Ready To Letter" Box page

Moving right along to the next, great 5 star beauty book. Making notes and letters look nice has been a nearly lifelong fascination for me. I always spent a lot of time on letters and on decorating the envelopes for the letters since I can remember - probably about  when I was 12 years old. I still prefer the beauty of snail mail to email. Fat more personal and entertaining...and I do want our postal system to survive so I take great pleasure is designing and sending cards! I couldn't wait to see what sort of techniques were contained in the lovely book entitled, simply "Thank You Notes". This is another book that I am totally enthralled with. I think that it also has such well done, fail proof directions and well thought out information that you can't go wrong.
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This book begins with a shorter, but thorough, section on materials. The cards in the books are grouped by thought in a way. Thank you to my sister, my better half etc; Thank You for a special day, the cash, for being there, for lending a hand, for being sweet.... you get the idea. The thing is that all of the thank you cards - as pertinent as they are to the specific sort of thank you - the cards and the techniques can easily be used for any other reason to send a delightful card. It's the great variety of techniques that this book gives you that really makes the book shine in my eyes! The techniques are all very clearly explained with particularly well done how to photos. You can't go wrong with these instructions!

I adore this little bird banner thank you card!

Here is another favorite! I think I like this one because I have been working on making shaped cards for special occasions myself lately!

How adorable is this one?!
This 'helping hands' card is probably my favorite - I love the creativity and the colors and the way the whole card was done. It will be the first one I try from the book !


Note: These books were generously provided to me by the publisher for honest review purposes only. No other remuneration was received.


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