Amanda has been drawing since before she could walk, and has taken art classes since she was 5 years old. She grew up in the south suburbs of Chicago and graduated from the University of Illinois in 2014 with a BA in Industrial Design (product design). A couple of years after college, she moved to West Loop in downtown Chicago, started an Etsy shop, and XO Art & Design was officially born! Her interests cover a wide range of mediums including but not limited to hand-lettering/calligraphy, drawing (graphite, digital illustration, colored pencil), painting (watercolor, acrylic, oil, glass painting), and graphic design (logos, branding, websites, packaging design).
She officially started XO Art & Design in 2017, although she has been freelancing art and design projects for friends and family for her entire life. In high school, Amanda would doodle pretty words and names in the margins of her papers, unknowing that a few years later it would be the largest portion of her self-owned business and what she loves to do most in the world. Just like everyone else, she was obsessed with the super satisfying calligraphy videos she saw all over Instagram and Twitter. She thought ‘I could totally do that’, ordered her first calligraphy set that day…and then quickly realized calligraphy wasn’t as easy as it looked! After a lot of practice and patience, she was hired to calligraphy her first set of wedding envelopes and was hooked from then on. Now, she is thrilled to be teaching and sharing her love for the incredible art form of calligraphy!
When she’s not in her studio, Amanda enjoys relaxing with a glass of red wine and her boyfriend, trying new restaurants in the city with her friends and family, cuddling with her cats (total cat lady over here) Madison and Luna, or binging HGTV home improvement shows or The Office for the 1200th time. Follow along with her on Instagram @xoartanddesign, on Etsy at xoartanddesign.etsy.com, through her website www.xoartanddesign.com, or at one of the upcoming Chicago Sip & Script events!