How To Start A Calligraphy Business

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Calligraphy is the art of handwriting. It requires skill, practice and the right tools, but once acquired it lends itself to many applications and could form the basis of a very successful business.

Calligraphy in the form of verses, quotes, names and initials can be applied to a wide range of different craft items such as calendars, greeting cards and bookmarks, leading the way into the lucrative gift market. Sell them direct to the public on your own market stall, or wholesale them to gift shops.
Businesses also provide exciting opportunities: museums, shops, estate agents, churches, clubs, societies, antique dealers, restaurants and hotels all use either display cards, invitation cards, dinner place cards, menus or posters. And what about other alphabets such as Greek, Russian and Hebrew? Perhaps this could form the basis of a specialism for you. And think about contacting your local printers. They could earn themselves a commission by passing on valuable customers to you – and vice versa.

Keep your eyes open for shops and businesses whose notices and displays you could improve. Price the work beforehand and then approach them in person, showing examples of the sort of work you do. Contact other businesses that you wish to target.

Calligraphy has a multitude of applications just waiting to be explored. If you can offer a quick, efficient service with this skill, it could prove to be your opening into the world of self-employment.
This will appeal if

– You have an obvious ability in this field.
– You’re creative.
– You’re happy doing repetitive work.


– Reasonably low start-up costs, although if you intend to enter the gift market you will have some outlay on stock.
– There is a premium on hand-crafted work.
– It has lots of applications and therefore a potentially huge market to explore.


– It can be repetitive (100 cards with the same greeting by Tuesday lunchtime?)
– Earnings are limited by your production capacity.
Future possibilities

– Use outworkers to increase production, eg art college students.
– Expand the range of craft items.
– Go into mass production – printing instead of individually hand-working each item.
– Produce a range of ‘How to …’ videos on each writing sty


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