To turn humble letters and words into works of art takes the right tools and lots of practice, but finding what works for you from the multitudes of pens, nibs and inks that are available can seem like a herculean task.

I have included both the fountain pen and dip pen in the basic tools list, which type you choose is up to you although the fountain pen is easier to use for the novice when first starting

Basic tools required

Calligraphy fountain pen with a 2 – 3 mm flat tipped nib and is equiped with a refillable or replaceable ink reservoir

Dipping pen nib about  2 – 3 mm wide (roundheaded nib)

Dipping pen nib about 2 mm wide with an angled tip (brause nib)

Dipping pen nib holder

Calligraphy ink (Black)

Practice template books, sheets, copier paper, etc

Paper towel or cotton rag (to dry nibs after cleaning)

Glass jar (for rinse water used in cleaning nibs)


Additional tools

The tools listed below will be helpful to you if you are wanting to make your own lined practice sheets rather than purchasing or downloading them from the internet, again this is your choice, I would suggest that you purchase at least one practice book or download some from the internet (there are some free ones)


Soft eraser


Cutting tools (scissors,x-acto knife)

12″ steel ruler (for sketching layout lines)

Protractor (Used for laying out the slope of the letter)

Drafting squares (45, 45, 90 degrees) or (30, 60, 90 degrees)


Drafting or artists tape