Today’s article provides a comparison of all six TPK calligraphy styles as well as the story of the inspiration behind each one. You’ll find links to both free and premium worksheets plus answers to several FAQs!
Most calligraphers have multiple calligraphy styles that they use to write. The styles are generally original, and each style has its own set of rules set forth by its inventor. To date, I have developed six modern calligraphy styles for The Postman’s Knock. Every one of those styles is available to learn with a detailed printable worksheet. In this article, we’ll talk about what makes each style special and cover a few FAQs.
About the Calligraphy Styles
Amy Style Calligraphy
In 2013, I created Amy Style calligraphy for Philadelphia bride Amy’s envelope/escort card calligraphy. This calligraphy style is the most popular on the TPK site. Both right- and left-handed beginners enjoy this style because there’s no right-leaning slant to it! Not having to focus on making a slant reduces the dip pen calligraphy learning curve.
If you’d like to try out Amy Style calligraphy, you can download a free basic worksheet by clicking here.
Note: The Amy Style calligraphy worksheet has an optional video course component that you can add on to enhance your learning experience. The video course walks you through exactly how to write each letter and word in the worksheet and includes bonus information.
Beth Style Calligraphy
I developed Beth Style calligraphy in 2013 for a client named Beth. It is an excellent choice for events — like Beth’s nautical dinner party — that you don’t want to have an overly feminine feel. The Beth is a stately calligraphy style, but it retains a bit of playfulness with its occasional loops and the curled tails of letters like “y” and “g”.
While Beth Style calligraphy has a little bit of a slant to it, you can easily create it with a straight pen (versus an oblique). If you’d like to try out Beth Style calligraphy, you can download a free basic worksheet by clicking here.
When I began learning pointed pen calligraphy in 2012 (read my calligraphy story here), I preferred flourishy styles that command attention. As a result, I came up with Flourish Formal Style. Fast forward a decade, and I still like this calligraphy style because it’s got a lot of loops and curls! There’s always potential to customize the style by adding even more embellishments.
To try out this calligraphy style, you can download the free basic Flourish Formal Style calligraphy worksheet by clicking here.
I developed Janet Style calligraphy in 2014 for a client named Janet who wanted elegant envelope calligraphy for her holiday cards. Janet Style is essentially Copperplate calligraphy with a smidge more embellishment. It shares similarities with Flourish Formal style calligraphy, but the Janet is more understated, with different letter formations and a deliberately delicate look.
To try out Janet Style calligraphy, you can download the free basic Janet Style calligraphy worksheet by clicking here. There’s also a brush pen version of the Janet Style calligraphy worksheet set.
Note: The Janet Style calligraphy worksheet has an optional video course component that you can add on to enhance your learning experience. The video course walks you through exactly how to write each letter and word in the worksheet and includes bonus information.
Kaitlin Style Calligraphy
In 2012, a bride named Kaitlin got in touch with me and requested a fresh, spontaneous, and artistic calligraphy style for her wedding. That was how bouncy, modern Kaitlin Style calligraphy came to be. This is a great calligraphy style if you don’t like drawing calligraphy guidelines. You can self-correct with dramatic upstrokes or downstrokes if words start sloping up or down too much.
To try out this calligraphy style, you can download the free basic Kaitlin Style calligraphy worksheet by clicking here. There’s also a brush pen version of the Kaitlin Style calligraphy worksheet set.
Note: The Kaitlin Style calligraphy worksheet has an optional video course component that you can add on to enhance your learning experience. The video course walks you through exactly how to write each letter and word in the worksheet and includes bonus information.
Cocktail Casual Calligraphy
People tend to have strong opinions about the Cocktail Casual calligraphy style. There’s one camp of people who don’t mind a little bit of calligraphic chaos, with lots of flourishes and strokes. Others prefer immediate legibility and more order. I developed this style last year, and my affection for it probably relates to the fact that it reflects my life now. All other TPK calligraphy styles were developed when life was pretty predictable and consistent (read: pre-kids). Now, I have a four-year-old and a six-month-old! Every day includes lots of love, messiness, and drama — usually related to the whereabouts of toys. This calligraphy style is dramatic with just a touch of chaos, and I can’t get enough of it.
To try out this calligraphy style, you can download the free basic Cocktail Casual calligraphy worksheet by clicking here.
People often write to me with copyright questions. For example, once you learn one of the TPK calligraphy styles, can you sell your envelope addressing services using one of those styles? Yes! Calligraphy and handwriting styles are not subject to copyright. Worksheets, however, are. So, you’re not violating copyright if you use one of these calligraphy styles to create commissioned work. But, if you redistribute a worksheet from TPK (i.e. you re-sell it or post it on the internet for free), that’s copyright violation.
Getting Better at Calligraphy
A great worksheet is a valuable learning tool! There are two caveats, though. First, I believe it’s important for learners to have video instruction, which is why I created The TPK Beginner’s Modern Calligraphy Online Course. If you’re new to calligraphy, start there. Once you’re finished with that course, you’ll understand the basics and be ready for a worksheet set.
The second caveat is this: worksheets shouldn’t make up the bulk of your calligraphy practice. When you begin to feel confident about your skill level, start mixing in some sessions where you focus on making projects and doing drills. The more you can switch up your practice and challenge yourself, the more motivation you’ll have to continue creating calligraphy. Plus, you’ll see your skills skyrocket!
A Word for Lefties
Anyone, right- or left-handed, can learn how to create any of these calligraphy styles. Beginners will likely find Amy Style calligraphy to be most approachable. That’s because it doesn’t require any sort of slant, which means less fiddling with your paper rotation and the way you hold you pen.
You’re welcome to use whichever dip pen you like the best for these worksheets. Lefties typically get along just fine with only a straight pen, regardless of what calligraphy style you choose to learn! If you’re right-handed, it could go either way. You may be like me and prefer to use an oblique pen, which helps you to achieve a nice slant. Or, you may prefer to use a straight pen. Experiment and choose what feels most comfortable for you!
I hope that this post helps you to understand the calligraphy styles on the TPK website a little bit better! If you’d like to learn more about making your own calligraphy style, check out the How to Create Your Own Calligraphy Styles post. Otherwise, feel free to use any TPK calligraphy styles for your projects! I love seeing social media posts of envelopes, cards, etc. that use a calligraphy style from this website … it tells me that I’m doing something right with my teaching techniques. 🙂