Put Into Words

Adorning your nuptials with the art of lettering

photography by Tina Sargeant
special thanks to A Fine Press and Boondock Studios for materials provided and to Waller Construction & Design Center for use of their event space

By grade school most of us were scribbling out our ABC’s on a broken mid-line wide ruled paper, though not necessarily by choice.  Learning to write, let alone learning to write in cursive, may not have come so easily for some of us. We may have avoided it, whined about it, wondered why such a tedious practice was a necessary addition to our skillset. Despite our best efforts to print our way into adulthood, we managed to learn to write in script cohesively and legibly.

Once upon a time, it was thought that fluid penmanship would be the sole form of communication most essential to us as we aged.  Still, through the years we’ve managed to put our paper and pen aside for more convenient ways of communication. In turn, beautifully fine-tuned penmanship has become a rarity.. Yet the desire for handwritten designs and lettering, in both classical and casual forms, has made a strong return to weddings in recent years. As our personal, daily need of it has declined, its appeal to mark the rare and special moments in life has only heightened.

The art of lettering holds a kind of nostalgia that seems attainable, the way Julia Child’s Beef Bourguignon seems attainable: we know we are capable of cooking it, but actually cooking it is an entirely different story. Crafted penmanship can appear quite feasible, yet appear equally enchanted and elusive;  that is precisely what makes it an art. If French is a romantic language, the art of lettering must be its scriptural counterpart. And weddings may just be the setting where this artform seems to come the most alive.

Through a harmony of scripts and proportions, inks and paints, the art of lettering is a feast for the eyes.  Styles that have evolved through the years are as diverse as the weddings they grace today. Whether it be elegant or modern, bold or polished, stately or quirky, these handwritten designs are a sure way to swoon the eyes.

For these two local self-taught artists, wedding season their season of highest demand.  When it comes to the big day, no matter what approach a couple may prefer to display their love, somehow these two ladies know just how to put it into words.

CROSBY CALLIGRAPHY:

When taught cursive in the first grade Pamela Crosby, began perfecting her knack for lettering as she took to a broad-tip pen nib to begin learning old English-style calligraphy. Even through raising four kids and her role as Director of COMPASS: The Center for Calling & Career at Southeastern University, her artistic hand continued to develop diverse styles of calligraphy. In 2009, through the help and encouragement of Heidi Campbell at the  Stationery Loft,  Pamela opened Crosby Calligraphy.

She has since been adorning wedding invitations and more throughout central Florida and even nationwide. Working with a variety of events and styles that seek anything from traditional to modern fonts, Pamela crafts letters to fit each individual’s taste.

As our personal, daily need of fluid penmanship has declined, its appeal to mark the rare and special moments in life has only heightened.

Using the traditional calligraphy fountain pen, nib and ebony ink, Pamela sketches out modern fonts that evolve with the current styles and even matching fonts per request. Still her mainstay script is the classic font that keeps many coming back for her timeless penmanship. With a style that could easily be mistaken for a renaissance transcript, the ink flow from her pen has a way of romancing every page it stains.

In the past year, as interest has grown in the art across the globe and locally, Pamela began teaching calligraphy workshops for all levels in Downtown Lakeland, inside the lovely Simple Vintage and Scout & Tag. Since its first class, the shop has hosted several Calligraphy & Cupcake workshops. (The latter part of the workshop title is to indicate the delicious sweet treats her daughter Kandace bakes, that all students receive as a sugar-hit bliss of motivation.) Each class is fully supplied with an original workbook and all the tools to get any novice on their way to becoming a skilled calligrapher.

In addition to wedding products and services, Crosby Calligraphy offers custom design for a variety of requests, from announcements, certificates, original poems to hand painted globes and unique requests. Her lettering has been featured in the popular wedding blog 100 Layer Cake and you can be sure to find more opportunities to join Calligraphy & Cupcake workshops in Downtown Lakeland.

JULIET GRACE LAPHAM DESIGN:

Juliet Grace Lapham has always been drawn to fanciful designs, particularly with a paintbrush. After an internship with Anthropologie in Charlotte NC, and graduating college, her art work quickly evolved into Juliet Grace Design.  

After being featured in several wedding blogs, Juliet’s whimsical way with words and watercolors were in high demand. Launching her business from Florida, her designs have been requested for weddings across the globe, including England, Italy and in New Zealand (for the former Miss New Zealand). Juliet Grace Design has been featured in The Knot Magazine, Southern Weddings Magazine, and Magnolia Rouge.

Along with the wedding essentials (invitations, menus, RSVP’s etc.) Juliet offers unique products, which include her floral costumed crests and quirky illustrated city maps, to give guests from out of town a visual guide to a city’s finest attractions.

Juliet Grace Design offers options of warm and fresh lettering to fit any themed wedding. Beyond wedding ceremonies Juliet also has an Etsy store full of prints of featuring inspiring quotes from famous writers and to beloved films, crests and lively illustrations. (Side note for Lakelanders: you may most appreciate her print illustrations of Lakeland, currently available for sale in her Etsy store.)

For your every wedding design and lettering need, both Juliet Grace Design and Crosby Calligraphy have all the ink, paint, and artistry to far exceed your bridal expectations.

For design and lettering for any special occasion contact:

Juliet Grace Design at julietlapham@gmail.com and

Crosby Calligraphy at crosbycalligraphy@gmail.com