REVIEW: Modern Calligraphy with Emerald Paper Design

On Thursday morning, I left Daisy with her Pops and Granny, picked up my lovely friend Pip and we tootled out of Cheltenham for a modern calligraphy course run by Emerald Paper Design.

We arrived at a Cotswold stone barn nestled in the Colesbourne hillside. The Cotswold Wedding Studio, run by Hollie at ‘Daisys Says I do’ is a beautiful, calm space, full of Hollie’s fabulous wedding props and intricate designs – a really inspirational setting if you’re planning a wedding – or any kind of party, or even just fancy a revamp at home and are looking for ideas!

We sat down round a large table, each place set with our own name card, hand written in neon pink ink – a really personal touch that made us feel special before we even started – practice sheets, paper, pen holder, nib and ink.

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Emma Sunderland, Owner and Creative Director at Emerald Paper Design was running the course – woweee is she one talented lady and super lovely to boot.

We knew from her website that her work was good – her bespoke wedding stationery is gorgeous and unique, elegant and fun, all rolled into one – but when we saw her in action her swirly whirly letters flow from her pen nib so naturally it was awe inspiring and she was more than happy to share lots of helpful hints and tips to improve our skills and to build our confidence – which was great as we were lacking in both! Emma was attentive throughout the class and on hand for all of our questions. She watched as we wrote and was able to pick out where we were going wrong and how we could improve.


We had such a fun two hours – practising the technique was really therapeutic, and gradually the words of our chosen phrases became smoother as we became more and more confident. We were so relaxed and it was lovely chatting to the other ladies on the course, so we decided Emma’s workshops would be perfect for a hen do afternoon…. although our words may not have been quite so neat and tidy after a few glasses of bubbles!

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I’m so excited to start practicing – my R’s (as well as most other letters) need a LOT of work – and I can’t wait to play around with coloured inks and different papers. Emma has since emailed everyone who took the class with a list of suggested equipment and materials so that we can continue with our calligraphy adventure. At the end of the class the pen holder, nib and ink were ours to keep so I’ve been having a go again this evening with a quiet cup of tea and I think I’m improving…..slowly!

Emerald Paper Designs hold Modern Calligraphy workshops in and around Cheltenham that can be booked here – and we would recommend them without hesitation.

Now I need to get back to my R’s….




Workshop photos courtesy of Emerald Paper Design

1 Comment

  1. 26th May 2017 / 1:49 am

    I share your struggle with the Rs! there are so many variations of it and it’s hard to pick one

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