Thursday, June 10, 2010

Lovely Lettering by Bloom Guest Gina of Letter Girl

Gina, (also known as Letter Girl), is here to share a few tips about how to pretty-up our handwriting. It only took a few minutes on her blog, Rich Inner Life, to realize that Gina was not only someone we'd love to feature at Bloom, but also someone I wished I could know in real life. We are so honored to have her at Bloom today sharing some of her creativity!

Just about everything is easier when you can break it down into little steps: following a recipe, going on a road trip, setting a new goal. Today I’d like to share how to improve your handwriting by just trying a few simple steps.

The first step is to pull together some samples of handwriting you love. Chances are, if you want to make your own writing better, you’ve probably seen some writing that you aspire to. I keep an idea file when I see writing I admire (or anything else that inspires me, for that matter). Looking at great writing can help train your eye: look at spacing, the line weight (how thick or thin it is), the balance on the page; feel the emotion the lettering evokes; let your mind wonder to all the ways you would use your own handwriting if you could write like that.

When you’re ready to try writing something yourself, a list is a great place to start: a grocery list, a to-do list, a books-to-read list, clues for a treasure hunt. Spend just a minute or two more than you normally would on every day lists.

As you practice more, think about the spacing between lines, then the spacing between letters. A list on separate pieces of paper is a wonderful way to practice, and a great thing to include on a scrapbook page because if you make a mistake, you can just start over on a new little piece of paper, without wasting all the time you’ve already spent.

The best piece of advice is, of course, also the most simple: practice. When I look at this recipe card from 1984, it’s hard to believe that’s my own writing!

After 18 years of daily practice, my handwriting still changes a bit from day to day. (And my signature is still pretty much illegible, as my children are quick to point out.) I hope you’ll stop by my blog in July, when I’ll be featuring handwritten quotations every day.

Raise your hand if you're about to go find some scratch
paper and a pen to start practicing your penmanship.

Thanks for the tips, Gina!


Quiltingdaisy said...

Oops, your attachments aren't working for me.

shana said...

i HAVE met her in real life and she's just as wonderful as you might imagine . . . i enjoyed "stopping by". have a fabulous day!

stephanie@{Olive Tree} said...

I have one of her address stamps and I love putting a piece of her handwriting on my mail. : ) I love handwritten things, too, and when folks ask me why mine is so neat as well, I have always said the same thing that she does - practice your handwriting! : )

Bloom said...

This is so fun. I used to practice my handwriting a lot, but now that I do everything on my computer, I hardly write! And Gina, I would love to know- what are your favorite pens??


Jesslyn said...

I think the ART (because it truly is an art) of penmanship is dying. So glad there are others out there working hard to preserve it! I LOVE writing with my fountain pen, testing ways to tweak letters I'd like to improve, etc. When I got married, I got to search for and then practice the perfect "W" for my new last name. :)

lettergirl said...

Anne, my everyday pen is the Uniball Vision Exact in the micro size. (You can find them at Target!) I also use some of the other Uniball pens, but that little tiny micro one is my fave.

I also have a vintage fountain pen that my husband got me years ago. It is definitely on the verge of replacement, so I'll keep you posted if I find something good!

Jesslyn -- my daughter's middle name starts with M mainly because M is my favorite letter to write! (I also live in Minneapolis, Minnesota...lucky me!)