How to Start Lettering

A question posted from one of our blog readers: I was hoping Mary would share how she got started lettering. My girls want to try to learn this skill. Does Mary have any resources she’d recommend to learn? There are so many things out there to choose from, but I’d love help!”

Before Mary left for her trip, I asked if she could write a post on how she got started. I’m excited to share with you her journey.


I (Mary) can remember in May of 2015 saying I really wanted to learn to better letter when I tried to write something beautiful, much to no avail. I enjoyed art and the beauty of letters interested me. There are so many shapes and styles. I began to doodle around and enjoyed it very much. Lettering is a bit overwhelming because there is so much talent out there! I haven’t set out to be a pro because that’s not the direction I’m going, but I desire to keep improving as I learn and do the best I can do. It makes me so happy to see how happy nice lettering makes others! A world opens up of turning any text into something beautiful and personal, and that means a lot to others which makes it very worthwhile. 

So, for the real question: how did I learn? I learned by copying others (and as exactly as possible), doodling, and a lot of practicing (Sarah’s note: she usually had a pen and notebook next to where she sat in the living room so if there was idle time, she’d practice and practice her lettering). I’ve watched some videos from SkillShare, but it’s amazing what can be learned through observation. I like to look at signs, banners, billboards, the Internet, and text anywhere as I go about life. It’s helpful to see how others arrange letters and that can spark new ideas. 

Mary

This is Mary’s first picture of lettering something. She got the idea on the Internet.

This was Christmas that year.

Shortly after that, and before I got Ellie, she decorated the door with the above.

Then, in just one year’s time, her lettering looked like the above — completely her own idea!

Honestly, doesn’t that Mom above make you smile? Compare it to the mom on the plain white envelope to the right. It’s okay, I can say that because the one on the right is mine. Mary’s beautiful lettering DOES make a person smile.

“He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he
hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can
find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.”
Ecclesiastes 3:11

19 thoughts on “How to Start Lettering”

  1. Lovely! I always enjoy looking at lettering! Maybe there is hope for me to learn! Thanks for the tips!

  2. This post was perfect timing, as I have been wanting to learn how to letter, with Mary as my inspiration. Your lettering is beautiful, Mary! Thank you for sharing how you got started.

  3. I love to see how God gives us all different gifts. I appreciate her sharing that she practiced and observed to get this good. I sometimes think we just do it….but sometimes a gift from God has to be developed. Thanks for sharing!

  4. I have enjoyed seeing Mary’s lettering over time–she does a marvelous job. The projects are a blessing to others! I adore that little chalkboard easel! Did you make that? Or where can I get one like it! Thank you for this post about the lettering!

  5. Thank you for sharing! We are going to try our hands at some lettering projects. I love seeing the works Mary has done. I see how observing and practicing can make a difference!

  6. Mary’s hard work is incredible. Thank you so much for sharing! It really is inspiring to see others using their gifts for the Lord and others. The Puppy Love door decor is my fav!

  7. Beautiful lettering, Mary. I enjoy doing lettering too, although art isn’t my strongest talent, I’m more musical. My fave was the happy birthday card – so beautiful! 🙂
    PS – Sarah, how is your book coming along?

  8. I enjoy looking at beautiful lettering. It’s kind of like a modern day version of calligraphy. Great job Mary!

  9. Thank you for sharing about lettering and all the beautiful pictures too! It inspired me to make a “grill” sign for my husband’s anniversary gift. It was fun and now I want to learn and do more! What a blessing your family is to ours!

  10. What a fun post! Wow, Mary is so talented and I enjoyed seeing some of her projects. 🙂 She’s also a precious young lady, and it’s easy to see she has a heart to serve.
    Love, Mrs. Patti

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