We know, we know, it’s only the first week of November…but to be honest, we’ve been waiting ALL year for the holiday season to start. And while Thanksgiving is still a few weeks away, if you’re hosting this year it’s never too early to get some MAJOR tablescape inspo and start planning for your own!

Whether you’re looking for something budget-friendly, or you’re determined to create a table Joanna Gaines would approve of , there are so many different ways to decorate and make your table feel festive! We asked our squad to show how they’re decorating this year and we’re pretty sure you’re going to want to re-create these for yourself!

“Incorporating calligraphy is a given for any occasion that calls for me to set the table (duh!) but I usually try to get inspired first by finding/creating an item that will set the tone for the whole tablescape, in terms of colors or theme. In this case it was the blanket (found at Home Goods!) that I turned into a table runner. I’m loving all the mauve-y tones popping up everywhere lately and just ran with it! The feathers were cut from a strand sourced from Michael’s and I used a hot wax stamp to seal them to the tag. For the floral centerpiece I added sea grass  (that I literally made my husband pull over and cut on the side of the road) to help balance the pinks.”
-Meg Chaloner, Sip & Script Co-Founder


“Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays to decorate for! I’m definitely a bargain/DIY decorator whenever I can be, so I always try to work in a few things I have on hand and then spice up with some smaller purchases. For this tablescape, I used my every day white plates, neutral chargers, and linen napkins as a starting point. I purchased a few yards of fall-inspired plaid fabric, as well as some white cheese cloth to use as a runner. Candles and candle holders were purchased at Michaels for under $20 (coupons FTW!) and gold flatware was purchased at Target. I crafted a simple bouquet with fall flower finds from the local market to add a little life to the table. The final touch were the gourds ($0.69/each at the local market!) used as place cards and calligraphed note cards for each setting. I love the idea of remembering what this day is for, so a little interactive activity for guests is always a fun conversation starter and moment to reflect!”
-Molly Petroski, @mollygracemakes

Our general guidelines for styling any holiday tablescape:

1. Figure out the color palette and overall theme, and stick to it! When in doubt go for neutrals – you can always add in a pop of color with florals and linens!
2. Fresh flowers can brighten a whole room! Shop for what’s in-season!
3. Search for pieces you already own, or check out your local antique store. Sometimes the best details are hand-me-downs and thrift shop finds!
4. Don’t be afraid to incorporate a few metallic pieces!
5. ALWAYS add in a touch of something handwritten! Even if you’re picking up the pen for the first time!


Let us know if you try to recreate any of these looks, we’d love to see! Here’s to the start of the holiday season, we hope to see you at one of our upcoming classes to celebrate! Head on over to our website and see where we’re headed next!
As always, happy lettering, friends!

Lefties, let’s face it: our world was designed for righties. Yes, we’re lucky they finally made lefty scissors and computer mice, but I think we all remember back when we had to awkwardly sit at a righty’s desk or take papers out of a 3-ring binder before being able to actually write on them. And don’t even get us started on can openers or spiral notebooks…

As if there aren’t enough disadvantages to being a lefty, calligraphy as a lefty poses its own set of challenges. But fear not, it also comes with a few advantages that’ll help you create beautiful handmade works of art. Below you’ll find our top five tips for lefty calligraphers that will help you to take your calligraphy to the next level!

1. Find the right angles

Just as we’ve had to figure out how to hold our pens and pencils to not drag our hand and smudge our writing, the same thing is necessary for dip pen. Some lefties are over-writers (curling their hand over the baseline) while others (like myself) are underwriters, writing with their wrist under the baseline.

Some lefty calligraphers take a more extreme angle with their pen (e.g. lower the pen so it’s closer to being parallel with the paper) and write with their hand underneath the actual writing. Playing around with good ol’ geometry can help you find the positioning that works best for you. We typically suggest our lefties start with a 45 degree angle and adjust for their comfort.

While you play around with the hand position that’s right for you, you can also adjust the angle of your paper. Turning your paper slightly clockwise may help an over-writer achieve the ideal comfort level without needing to drag his or her hand through ink.

2. Give yourself some space

Just like sitting next to your righty relatives at the Thanksgiving table creates some major spatial #leftyproblems, so does not giving yourself the necessary space to do calligraphy. When I was first starting out with brush pen calligraphy, I’d be cozied up on my couch, supporting and stabilizing my arm with my couch’s armrest and using only my wrist and hand. This made the transition to pointed pen at an actual desk more challenging because my left arm wasn’t prepared to move across a page along with my hand and wrist. So plan out your desk or table space before you start to write, and make sure your ink isn’t in your hand/arm path! 

3. Try an oblique nib holder

If you’ve tried a straight holder and it’s just NOT working for you, grab yourself one of THESE oblique holders to see if it helps to avoid the dreaded smudge.

Even oblique pens were even invented with righties in mind (we can’t have any nice things!), because obliques make it easier to achieve a right-leaning italic slant. Lefties normally have a more natural slant due to the angle required for our paper and/or hand, so we don’t typically need an oblique pen. But if you’re looking for a way decrease the chances of dragging your hand through wet ink, an oblique pen may be your new best friend.

Oblique pens take some playing around with; it can be odd to see your writing appearing ahead of your hand, but for some lefties they are a total game-changer!

4) Find your favorite nib(s)

Another group calligraphers categorize themselves into is heavy- versus light-handed. The preferred pressure you apply to your calligraphy pen doesn’t depend on whether you’re lefty or righty: I’m a relatively heavy-handed lefty, and I know both light-handed lefties and righties. The pressure you prefer to apply to your pen may determine which nibs you like best, though. Each nib is different due to the length of the tines; the longer the tines, the more flexile the nib, and the more ink that flows when pressure is applied. The angle lefties require for their hand may require a more flexible nib to get ink flowing, but we’ve truly seen a 50/50 split on nib preference in our classes! My personal favorite nib is the Brause Steno aka Blue Pumpkin — it has a medium-to-strong flex that gives you strong downstrokes and super-fine upstrokes, and bonus – it holds a good amount of ink! 

5. Be patient

This isn’t just a lefty tip – it’s true for any and all new calligraphers! I probably repeat this too many times in class, but it’s true. I spent hours practicing in the beginning, and it didn’t come easy to me. But unlike other hobbies I’ve picked up over the years, even though I wasn’t “good” at calligraphy at first, the benefits of practicing outweighed the frustration and impatience to make pretty things. Lefties may have a little more adjusting to do in order to get their positioning, angle and hand right, but both lefties and righties need patience and plenty of practice to see progress over time. Even the most famous calligraphers still do practice drills, so make sure you’re investing time and patience into your own work!

Hopefully these tips will help you navigate the world of lefty-calligraphy. We’d love to see your work, tag us on instagram (@sipandscript) or comment below with any questions! Happy lettering, friends!






Author: Alyssa Drury
Alyssa can be reached [email protected], click here to sign up for one of her upcoming Sip & Script classes!


Tucked away on a quaint street in Brookline Village is a specialty cheese shop (and cheese school!) called Curds & Co. When you walk in the door you’re instantly greeted by the owner, Jenn, and her team of Cheesemongers. Whether you’re a wine and cheese connoisseur or a total newb to it all, you’ll quickly be tempted by the cases filled with fine cheese, meats and goods. And can we talk about the WINE? This place has everything you need for the perfect girls-night-in or date-night…which made it an instant Sip & Script dream venue!

A little about Curds & Co:

Our mission of “Bringing great cheese and happiness to the people” all started with a love of storytelling and the art of a curated experience. Our goal is to have everyone leave the store with more cheese, knowledge, and happiness than they walked in with. If you leave the store without tasting cheese, we’re not satisfied.

We held our Intro to Modern Calligraphy class with a group of lovely ladies who came out to learn about cheese and wine, and of course get their lettering on! We were treated to a Ploughman’s Box (pictured below!), and a flight of wine that paired perfectly together.

We’re pretty fondue, Curds & Co., (and yes, we’re surprised we’ve made it this far without throwing in other cheese puns, too!). Thanks for hosting us – we’re already planning our next trip in! If you haven’t had the chance to check the shop out, head on over to their website, or Instagram and plan your visit!

For more classes like this, check out our calendar here, and sign up for our newsletter so you can be the first to know of upcoming classes and all things Sip & Script!


Happy lettering, friends!

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