Monday, December 31, 2012

Press for Ash Tree Creations

What an amazing year it's been here for Ash Tree! From wedding calligraphy features in online magazines and blogs, to a fabulous partnership with She's the First selling cupcake necklaces to help raise money to fund girls' education, 2012 has certainly been busy. Here's a summary of all the recent press this year -

She's the First Cupcake Necklace, $20
A Charm for Charity - Shopaholic
Jacquelyn Mysliwiec, South Shore Living Magazine

"Teaming up with She’s the First, a not-for-profit in support of girls’ education across the globe, local jewelry designer Ashley Osgood of Ash Tree Designs has designed a unique handmade cupcake pendant which acts as the bright and whimsical charm on her $20 cupcake necklaces, in which $15 for every one purchased will go toward the charity. 

Osgood, specializes in sea glass jewelry, as well as recycled sail products, but her innovative outlook on jewelry design constantly leads her to all sorts of mediums, designs, and projects— such as—her keepsake vibrant "tie-dye" cupcake necklace. If you’re looking for a gift for a special lady of any age, this 100% handmade necklace is a steal. It’s a gift that will make more than just the receiver smile."

Holiday Gift We’re Loving: She’s the First’s Cupcake Charm
StyleWatch, People Magazine

"What’s better than a cupcake? A cupcake that’s calorie-free! She’s the First, an organization that sponsors girls’ educations, helping them become the first in their families to graduate, is doing a modern bake sale this holiday season. 

The non-profit partnered with Etsy’s Ash Tree Creations to design this cute cupcake charm, which stands just 1-in. high and hangs on a 16-in. silver plate chain. It mirrors the organization’s rainbow cupcakes, which are sold nationwide to raise funds for its cause. And this cupcake will help, too: $15 of the $20 price will benefit She’s the First’s important programs."

Buy a Cupcake Necklace - 75% is Donated to STF!
She's the First & Cupcakes!
Sprinkles and Style blog

"This cupcake necklace, which you can buy from Ash Tree Creations, would be a great gift for your sister, niece, friend, the little girl you babysit, or even yourself! The handmade tie-dye cupcake charm is adorned with sparkling Swarovski crystals on 'vanilla frosting' that's fun, vibrant, and eye-catching - would certainly be a happy addition to your jewelry collection."

Birthday Bazaar: A Rainbow of Fun

NYC Metro Parents Magazine

"We’ve compiled a bazaar of ideas, products, and tips in this birthday party package. Read on for our favorite new party products, other momentous birthdays we're celebrating in April - 

Want a one-of-a-kind gift that gives back? This handmade magenta-and-teal special edition cupcake necklace donates 75% to She’s the First!, a nonprofit that sponsors girls’ education in the developing world ($20;; learn more about the cause supported by artist Ashley Osgood at"

Calligraphy feature on
The Art of Calligraphy

"I love the white script against the black envelope, making for a traditional look. The place cards are given extra pizazz with a handwritten calligraphy note by Ash Tree Creations."

Broke Ass-Bargains
Broke Ass-Bride Newsletter

"Love the look of calligraphy but your budget won't allow it? Ash Tree Creations is giving away an entire calligraphed reception package! Visit her Calligraphy Giveaway page for more information on how to enter!"

While I do see sales year round for cupcake necklaces and other handmade jewelry, the holiday shopping season is over - so it's time to ramp back up for wedding calligraphy for 2013 clients and weddings. 

I've already booked several clients for Jan-Feb, but if you're interested in having your invitations addressed in calligraphy, contact me on how to get started! 

Monday, December 17, 2012

Cupcake Charm Leather Bracelet

I understand I have a cupcake problem.

With the success of the She's the First Cupcake Necklaces and how much fun they are to make, I starting fooling around with sketches of simple cupcake bracelet designs. I know that many people already have a favorite necklace that they wear every day, so I thought a cupcake bracelet may be a perfect, logical next step for my cupcake jewelry line to take.

Cupcake Charm Leather Bracelet, $45

The result was this "sweet" handmade cupcake charm bracelet - elegant and simple, I strung a high quality black leather bracelet with a single antiqued silver-plated pewter cupcake bead. The cupcake charm is available in either pink or white frosting (aka, strawberry and vanilla), with"sprinkle" rhinestone colors including red, blue, light blue and green.

Each frosted cupcake charm measures 11x11mm in size, and the black leather bracelet with sterling silver clasp is available in the standard size of 7.5", and larger sizes are definitely available. I just thought that this would make a perfect gift for a little sister, daughter, or best friend!

White Cupcake Leather Charm Bracelet, $45
The high-quality black leather also makes a fantastic base for other large-hole bead charms, available at a fraction of the price - so grab yours today @ the Ash Tree Etsy shop! :)

Monday, December 10, 2012

Wedding Calligraphy: Navy Ink on Cream Envelopes

Calligraphy for Wedding Invitations, $2 per envelope
Featured here are some images from my latest work with a bride who had navy blue as one of her wedding colors. Her invitations were a cute and simple design, with two birds hanging out in a gorgeous deep navy embossed branch.

After the consultation, we decided the blue would look beautiful on her cream envelopes. I did a custom ink mix to match the embossed design, her return address on the envelope, and the invitation text perfectly.

She opted for a thicker nib for the calligraphy pen, so the lettering made more of a statement on the envelope. The bride also requested less of a flourish on her addresses - and with a thicker pen to work with, that was more than easy to accommodate.

Wedding Calligraphy for Invitations, $2 per envelope
Are you looking to have your wedding invitations professionally addressed by a calligrapher? Contact me on how to get started: I've worked with brides all over the country - and if you're local to Boston we can grab some coffee and talk about what you're looking for. Talk to you soon!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Cupcake Necklaces Reach First Goal to Support She's the First!

Cupcake Necklace Sales Have
Raised $300 Towards our goal!
We did it! Thanks to the generous and fabulous supporters of She's the First, I've reached the first tier of my goal to help raise $300 with cupcake necklace sales to reach my goal of donating $1,600 to this great organization.

With She's the First now going to be on NBC's American Giving Awards, I thought this would be a great time to spotlight some of the great work they are doing. STF are currently the running to win $1,000,000 - which comes down to Facebook voting. So if you have a moment, please vote for them to  help to unlock this tremendous donation to send girls to school and share before December 4, 2012.

Back to stunning little cupcake necklace sales: if you look on the She's the First website, $300 is enough for an all-inclusive yearly package for everything a girl needs to go to school in Kopila Valley in Surket, Nepal.

About Kopila Valley School

The girls who go to school here come from poor circumstances. The girls all come from poor or illiterate families, and fall into the “high risk” category of being married off to a man, work as domestic servants, have to work in hotels, or by dry riverbeds to earn a living for their family. These girls are the first of their generation to be educated and literate. Kopila Valley is a co-ed primary school that is a safe place for students to spend the day, receive an education in basic English, Nepali, Math, Science, Health, and Social Studies and have their basic needs met. School runs from Sunday-Friday, with Friday being a half day for extracurricular and fun activities, i.e. racing, sports matches, dance competitions, debate, art, and other activities.

What Does This $300 Do? 

This is enough to provide the following for one girl for a YEAR:

• School uniform: $28 (includes 1 skirt, 1 pair of pants, 2 school shirts, 1 sweater, 1 hat, belt, school tie, a pair of shoes, socks, and warm tights for winter)
School bag, supplies, and set of the year’s text books: $22
• School lunches: $75  (this includes, rice, fresh vegetables, and lentil soup 5 days a week)
• Tuition: $120 (goes towards everything needed to keep the school functioning and sustaining itself, i.e. staff, teachers, and cook salaries, repairs, and construction, school materials, and classroom needs)
• Medical needs: $55 (i.e. vaccines, vitamins, sanitary napkins, medical emergencies, and dental care for the year)
Total: $300

Interested in helping to sponsor a girl Kopila Valley, or any other girl around the world? Here's how to help!

Puchase a STF Cupcake Necklace: 75% of proceeds
Go directly to She's the First!
  • Give the Gift of Awareness for yourself or a friend: 75% of all specially designed Ash Tree She's the First Cupcake Necklace go directly to She's the First
  • Explore the Directory on the STF website to read more about girls who need your help
  • Organize your own Bake Sale to sponsor a girls' education in your school with these great tips from STF
  • Vote for She's the First before Dec. 4th to win the American Giving Awards so they may receive their $1 million grant!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Christmas Tree Pendant Necklaces

The holidays will be here before you know it, so let's get ready for them with this elegant and simple Christmas tree pendant. While I've already sold the first one of this series, you can still snag this gorgeous silver-finished pendant with Swarovski green crystals.

Silver Christmas Tree Pendant Necklace, $28
It suspends beautifully on a stunning 17" silver plate chain, and rests on your neck at approx. 34x11mm in size. Would definitely make a fabulous holiday gift for yourself, or someone important in your life - (especially those with Christmas birthdays!)

I also have this same piece available in a beautiful gold finish with a red, green, and yellow Swarovski crystals, suspended on a gold chain for another sophisticated look - it's currently listed in my etsy shop as Gold Christmas Tree Pendant Neckace.

Gold Christmas Tree Pendant Necklace, $28
Get ready for those fabulous holiday parties this year and order yours today! :)

Monday, November 19, 2012

Sterling Silver LOVE Necklace

I saw something like this on Pinterest, and just had to try my own. The newest listing to my Ash Tree Designs Etsy shop is this gorgeous sterling silver "LOVE" pendant necklace - which is at a handmade, budget-friendly  price of $28.

Sterling Silver "Love" Necklace, $28
Perfect for the newly engaged bride or just because you want it, the necklace is strung on a 16" silver plate chain and is about 34mmx19mm in size. I love how elegant yet modern it looks, and think it would make a great gift this holiday season.

Always looking for symbolic jewelry, I definitely have a few more ideas up my sleeve for new products this holiday season. Stay tuned, or shoot me an email to get your own custom order today!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Seth Godin Lecture at Tufts University

I was a nerdy little Marketing fangirl when I heard that Seth Godin was delivering a lecture - free to Tufts students and alumni - this month. I registered immediately. He's authored some of my favorite marketing books, like The Purple Cow and All Marketers are Liars. I also subscribe to his blog, and read it every day when it lands in my inbox. Naturally, I wasn't disappointed when he delivered his talk yesterday evening on campus.

What I love about Seth is that all of what he says makes perfect sense to me - I've had more than one "duh" moment when reading his stuff - and especially when I heard him talk. The problem is getting it into motion, into practice. Maybe my lower-level-not-quite-Tuftsy-brain just boils all of his content down to - "just be awesome, and everything will be good."

So when this bald little guy with great bold glasses came up to the podium (he referred to himself later as a tortoise, and I was like - why, yes. Yes you are.) I wasn't sure what to expect. I ended up taking notes during his lecture - mostly one-liners about points he made with stories he told. I liked hearing about when he was at Tufts and started a million businesses, and most of them failed. (Though my bitter student-loan brain got irritated when he said how fortunate he was that his dad paid for his rent and tuition costs...that he "just" had to pay for food. As dampering it is to think about money, I'm sure being in debt or worrying about more bills makes it a lot more difficult to put it all out there and fail) From his failed businesses, he learned to say "This might not work." He got lots of practice in building things that were greater than himself, businesses that have stood the test of time. He also took as many classes as he could to learn a little about a lot, and was awarded his degree based on the classes he passed.

Another thing I found really interesting - and that embarassingly, rang true to me - was that what got us into Tufts will not get us out. You can get perfect grades, get into a perfect school, do everything you are supposed to do, but being perfect will get you no where in life. Instead, you'll be looking for perfect in your job, looking to see how you can be perfect - when it's just mediocrity. I was so sure that if I did everything right, got good grades, went to the school I was supposed to go to - that everything would work out for me. And it hasn't. The reason being is that we are in the middle of a revolution right now - the Connection Revolution - and revolutions destroy the perfect. Seth used the example of the record industry - which was perfect, until it wasn't. Now there is a very limited amount of record labels, yet more people are recording music and more people are listening to music than ever before - because they are more connected.

There are no college exams on trust, on making rules, or on solving problems. Maybe we can address all these problems in creative ways - and maybe they won't work. I definitely think the institution of college education is heading towards a revolution - especially when students graduate and don't have that job they felt was promised to them because of their degree. I liked his story about Icarus, which we all know as "don't fly too close to the sun, or the wax on your wings will melt and you will perish". What's interesting about that is there is more to that story that no one ever tells - after the sun, Icarus is told "do not fly too low, or your wings will be caught in the mist, you will lose your lift and surely perish." So - don't fly too high, but also, don't fly too low. Don't be lazy and compliant.

Another fact he brought up was that the "disease" of writer's block started in 1942. Before that, anyone who wanted to write a book, did. Now, there's this overwhelming awareness of resistance, of our internal editors, afraid of approaching other people and saying "I made this". It's funny - I worked all day yesterday - that same day I saw Seth - on a new website design for my company, and I delayed sending it for hours. When I finally did, I prefaced it with "this can be changed"! and "this is just a first pass!". What kind of BS is that? I made something I was proud of - why couldn't I just send it to my boss? It's the fear of not being good enough, of a past rejection of my work at the forefront of my mind. But I've also gotten past praise - so why isn't that something that I'm thinking about?

The last point he made which also applies to me was the difference between a professional and an amateur. An amateur sees resistance to himself or an idea, and is paralyzed by it. A professional is aware of resistance , and overcomes it. Building your personal brand is all about building your reputation and confidence in what you have to say, as it's valuable. And definitely shouldn't be thrown away. So, just be awesome.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Wedding Calligraphy: Grey Ink on Cream Place Cards

Wedding Calligraphy for Place Cards, $1 each
Just completed another wedding reception calligraphy job for a client with a fall wedding. With grey and yellow in her wedding palette, the bride opted for cream colored place cards for her wedding reception - and wanted each guests' name to be written in grey ink.

After her consultation and viewing some previous work where I had also done calligraphy in charcoal grey ink, we elected on a slightly lighter shade so as not to look too harsh on the cream, with an added flourish to the text. She then gave me her cream cards from Paper Source, where she had craft-punched the bottom front edges of each card herself. I thought this made them look a lot like lace, and they were so fun to work with!

Wedding Reception Calligraphy
The bride also needed the place cards relatively last-minute, as she expected to do them herself and simply ran out of time - which I do see occasionally. Luckily, we were able to connect via my Wedding Wire Calligraphy Vendor profile, and I was able to turn about 80 cards for her in a matter of days.

Have a few weeks before your wedding and would like some calligraphy for your place cards? I've worked with brides all over the country on last minute *emergency* touches, and would be happy to help you. Contact me to get started!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Help Feed Women in Boston: Rosie's Place Food Drive


This was not an easy election to follow. Seeing topics important to women as political issues was difficult for me personally - both as a woman and as a big sister.

However, instead of walking around Republican / man-bashing (well okay maybe I did that a little ;), I thought it would be more productive to actually DO something about it. That's how I originally got involved with the She's the First charity (which through STF cupcake necklace sales has successfully donated about $300 to educating girls in developing countries!) last year, and I can certainly do that at home in Boston.

What I've come to realize is, no matter how frustrating it can be to have birth control, the definition of rape, and equal pay openly discussed among male politicians with little regard to women, there are so many worse things happening every day where we live. They're a little more concerned about where they are going to sleep at night, and what they are going to eat: not so much about what their male co-worker brings in for salary.


So I organized this Food Drive to benefit a great organization called Rosie's Place, who's mission it is to help women maintain their dignity, seek opportunity, and find security in their lives. Founded in 1974 by a woman who was horrified seeing homeless women dressing up as men to get assistance in shelters, many of the women assisted at Rosie's Place are working and in housing but just can’t make ends meet. Some are newly homeless, while others have been living on the streets for years. Rosie's Place serves women as young as 18 and as old as 80. Approximately one-third of their guests also have children.

Each year 78,000 nutritionally balanced meals are served in their warm Dining Room. 1,800 women shop for 20 to 40 lbs. of free non-perishable food items and fresh produce from their Groceries program each month. Rosie's Place does not accept funding from the city, state or federal governments or the United Way. Thanks to generous donations from volunteers, 88 cents of every dollar raised goes directly to services for women and their children.


With the "Feeding the Women of Boston: Making a Difference" drive I've set up, helping out is as easy as shopping online.
  • No trip to the grocery store required 
  • No need to drop off goods at any physical location
  • Don't need to live in or nearby Boston to help
  • Pick whatever food item you want, at whatever quantities, to purchase online
  • You'll be sent an email confirmation at the conclusion of the drive (Dec. 21st) confirming Rosie's Place receipt of your donation, as well as a receipt for tax purposes
  • That's it!
Finally, some good to come from online shopping :)

It's super easy to donate - just pick what you'd like and check out!
So I'm writing this post here to ask all my lady-friends, colleagues, and even lady-loving boy friends, to please take a moment to visit my Food Drive web page to make a small donation in the form of a non-perishable food item for whatever you can so that these ladies in Boston have something warm to eat this winter and holiday season. All items will be delivered right before Christmas Eve!

Here is the web URL if the above link won't work:

Thanks in advance for all that you do, here's to a successful finish of 2012!

Source: Please visit the Rosie's Place website to read more about this great organization -

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Silver Rhinestone Horseshoe Necklace

Just because we could use all the good luck we can! Check out the latest creation from Ash Tree, two of which are now available at my Etsy shop for purchase this holiday season.

Always looking to incorporate symbols into my work, I took a look at the horseshoe symbol's actual meaning. Did you know that the horseshoe was another ancient emblem used to ward off the "evil eye"? After the Evil Eye Bracelet I designed, the horseshoe (and eventually four-leaf clover!) was a logical next step for the "good luck" line :).
Silver Rhinestone Horseshoe Charm Necklace, $28
Common legend is that the ends of the horseshoe must be pointing up in order to keep all the good luck in. There are theories that the magic of this symbol is in its shape, which is that of the horned moon. Then again, most are satisfied with the notion that the shoe protects the horse, so the horseshoe must work for people, too.

Pretty cool, huh? As I mentioned, this is a limited-edition line: so when these two pieces are gone - they're gone! And with an affordable price like this, it makes a great gift - especially for those needing a little extra luck on final exams, or wedding days :) so don't wait, check out my Silver Rhinestone Horseshoe Charm Necklace etsy listing to see more pics, and get yours today!

Monday, October 22, 2012

NFL Logo Jewelry: New England Patriots Necklace

New England Patriots Necklace, $28
With football season in full swing, it's time for the perfect gift for that diehard Pats fan. And being one myself, I kickstarted this sports charm necklace line with my own Massachusetts football team: The New England Patriots. (We also beat the Jets yesterday, which I am both very happy and relieved about. Overtime, man!)

Contact me to order
an MLB Charm Necklace!
(same price)
The official NFL licensed Patriots logo featured in this necklace is an enameled pewter charm, and is strung on a strong 18" black rolled leather necklace with 2" of extender chain (please inquire for larger sizes!). The Pats logo rests on your neck at approx. 27mm x 13mm in size. There's also an option for a stunning silver plate chain, if the black necklace isn't your thing.

This charm sports jewelry line is also not limited to the National Football League - you can order any Major League Baseball sports team logo necklace as well! Even though baseball season is out, it doesn't mean she's stopped thinking about her team :)

Order yours today - makes the perfect holiday or birthday gift for that girl who never misses a Brady game!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Wedding Reception Calligraphy Purple Ink

Wedding Calligraphy for Place Cards, $1 each

Typically once I complete a bride's wedding invitations, I hear from her a few months later to help her out with her reception. This can include anything from wedding signage to escort cards, and I just recently finished another beautiful job!

This bride's colors were gold and purple, so I matched the purple decorative scroll in her printed place cards and table cards for the names and numbers - and they came out great!

Wedding Reception Calligraphy

CALLIGRAPHY TIP: A tip for brides looking at place cards - whether you are going to hire a calligrapher or just writing out cards yourself, I recommend choosing a card stock that does not have an iridescent finish. This can make it difficult to write on, as the ink isn't able to sink into the weave of the paper well enough to give a crisp line. Already bought iridescent? The trick is to get an ink that is acrylic-based, which has similar qualities to paint - not water. This should work out much better for you.

Need some place cards or table numbers for your wedding? Contact me on how to get started with the calligraphy process - it will definitely push your wedding reception over the edge!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Sterling Silver Dove Necklace

Sterling Silver Dove Necklace, $28 

Every once in a great while, I design a piece that I'm so in love with that I wish I could keep. I made one of these Sterling Silver Dove Necklaces and put it in the 6 In the Shipyard store...then I made another one which is now for sale in my online shop. And I have to not wear it everyday because it's for sale for my lovely customers :)

I fell in love with this Sterling Silver dove link charm the second I saw it. It's just so delicate and elegant, and is very understated - I think it would also make a great bracelet, so I'm definitely going to make one up next. It suspends on your neck on a silver chain, and is such a subtle and beautiful representation of hope.

Very understated and elegant -
perfect for those who don't wear much jewelry.
My style of jewelry is usually pretty in-your-face and chunky because I'm quite a tall person, so I simply can't keep it. I think this would make a great birthday or thinking-of-you gift - and in some way matches the theme of my "When Pigs Fly" charm necklaces as well, which have been very popular recently. It's also at a great price point, which I try to

What do you think? Check out my Etsy shop listing to see more pics and to purchase - I definitely think this may be a *limited edition* item!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Bridal Shower Calligraphy

Calligraphy for Bridal Shower Signage, $2 each
This was a really fun project - I was commissioned through my Ash Tree Designs etsy shop to do calligraphy on these cute provided cards for an upcoming bridal shower. The bride's friend found me on Etsy originally though my wedding calligraphy signage listing, and after a few back and forth convos she was ready to go.

Wedding Calligraphy Signs, $2 each
She picked out several different pastel - toned card stock with adorable patterns, and created signs for each of the Bridal Shower "stations". She also lives in California - and it's always cool that someone across the country likes my work enough to ship it!

It's such a fun was to dress up an event, by directing where guests should go and what they should do. She matted each of the calligraphy cards and placed them in frames to designate the favor table, where to leave gifts, and even directions for the bar (we ALWAYS need instruction when there's a bar at a party ;) 

Guests need to know how to drink at the bar!!
Looking to have a similar project done for a party or special event? Shoot me an email on how to get started and for a quote - obviously distance isn't an issue :) Talk to you soon!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The David - Pastel Drawing

Just for fun, but check out my commissioned artwork offerings

I finally broke down during the tax-free weekend in August and bought myself a nice set of new pastels: they are pretty expensive, and I haven't used them since living in Italy, where my bag was so packed on the way home that I had leave them there. While they were well - used, the case was broken and I had to make a choice. 

But it was fun to break them out again. It's interesting that I've always favored the soft pastel, but think they are so powdery. They are really forgiving if you want to layer on color if you change your mind, but you have to be careful about muddying up an image with blending. 

So I got a picture of The David from Florence - one with a different perspective - and did a quick sketch out with my pastels, feeling out the contours of his muscles and face without much blending. I kind of liked the texture of no blending it feels really quick and strong. It obviously is not finished and I only focused on the cool parts of the image rather than the whole thing (big artist no-no), but what matters is that I am drawing again. 

I have done commissioned pastels in the past, so if you're looking to do something with a creative spin, I'd love to talk to you. Pricing varies on project and size, and you can read more about my commissioned work here. Working with people on creative projects like this is always the best! Shoot me an email to get started!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Wedding Calligraphy in Magenta Ink: To the President!

Have an extra invite? Send it to the President for something cool!
Calligraphy for Wedding Invitations, $2 each
Just a few images from a recent job - this client had a smaller wedding guest list, about 50 invitations that needed to be addressed. She had a really cool invitation design: dark purple and this hot magenta color that really popped on her white invitation card stock.

I went shopping and found the perfect ink to match the magenta - purple ink color to match her invitations. So much of her text was already in the deep purple color, so the magenta was really fun to play with.

Another thing she did that was really cool was send a wedding invitation to the President! I've heard of this, but this was the first time I've actually addressed one - if you have an extra invite and want to do something fun, address the envelope to the President and First lady (written above) and they will send you back a personal note of congratulations!

Need some wedding calligraphy for your upcoming wedding invitation mailing? I've worked with brides all over the country to help them get to the perfect vision for their wedding, both with their invitations and reception. So contact me to get started!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Charcoal Drawings of Wedding Photos

Commissioned Charcoal Drawings, $100 each
In June of 2011, my best friend got married to the love of her life. It's hard to believe that now over a year has gone by, and even harder that she's not around. She has since moved to Texas, and I'm still in Boston - so between student loans and her moving expenses, it's been tough not seeing each other for so long.

The year she got married, I saw her a good 3 times in a year period - which was awesome! Now that we have gone back to the distance, I miss not being able to hang out. So on their anniversary, I picked out one of their wedding photos (their hands with their new wedding rings) and did a sketch in charcoal of it. I matted and framed it, then shipped it off as a surprise wedding gift / housewarming gift for them about a month ago.

Commission your own drawing - Add Matt + Frame for extra $20
I really do love working on these pieces, with thought and meaning behind it. If you think about it, your wedding photos are memories that will last forever. They are beautiful images, and are great resources to use after your wedding as special gifts to family members or to use as thank-you notes.

For wedding calligraphy brides, another unique way that you can your images is to have one of significant meaning translated into a piece of art. It's a great way to add another perspective to your big day, through the eyes of an artist. This makes a great piece for your new home, and with the charcoal technique, the classic black-and-white charcoal look will match any decor - and look great in any room!

Not the bride? These charcoal wedding drawings make great gifts for bridesmaids or the maid of honor to give to the bride as a wedding gift, or make a fabulous and thoughtful 1-year anniversary present for the couple. It's a great way to say how you remember their big day: how much fun you had, an how meaningful it was for you to be a part of it.

Above is the original image, printed off and bit creased from working on it. Any .JPEG file or link will do for this project. Commissioned charcoal pieces are a flat $100 each, for a standard 8"x10" image, unframed. You can also do a framed or matted only option for an additional cost (approx. $20), and I'd be happy to ship right to the couple with a note from you!

Just some food for thought - the holidays are right around the corner, and you'll need something for the new Mr. & Mrs.! Contact me to get started :)

Monday, August 20, 2012

Make Your Wedding Unique with Calligraphy Signage

Calligraphy for Wedding Signage, $2 each
I thought writing about this custom calligraphy job is great timing - considering that there are just two weeks left in my Bridal Wedding Reception Free Calligraphy Giveaway contest, this is a great post to see what can be done if you really want to add some more personal flavor to your reception.

I loved working with this bride - she was fun, enthusiastic, and really wanted to add her own touch to her wedding reception. Her wedding colors were red with navy accents - all with a nautical theme. She had table numbers written on the backs of cards with diagrams illustrating how to eat a lobster for wedding guests!

The first and last images break down all the wedding signage that was done on 6x6 white cards, with "Sole Mates" being the sign used for a basket of flip-flops that guests could change into to be more comfortable, and even a sign explaining the sweet tea beverage choice.

"Reserved" Signs in Calligraphy for Wedding Aisles, $2 each
The calligraphy signs don't only have to be at the reception - but in the ceremony as well. Going with a navy ink, the bride asked for a series of "Reserved" signs (pictured above) to be placed at the end of the aisles to designate where the bridal party and family would be seated.

And lastly, the place cards were little red tags where guests' names were written in white ink - to be tied on mini mason jars as the wedding gift favors. All great ideas to make your wedding have a more personal feel - and all up to you!

Calligraphy for Wedding Signage and Place Cards, $1-$2 each
Would you like to add a creative touch through wedding calligraphy signage at your wedding? Contact me to get started on your project, and don't forget to apply to the Wedding Reception Giveaway Contest, which ends in 2 weeks!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Beach Wedding Gift Ideas: Swarovski Crystal Flip Flop Necklaces

Swarovski Flip Flop Necklaces, contact me to order
This was such a fun commissioned project to work on! This woman came into the 6 In the Shipyard store earlier in the summer and noticed my latest antiqued silver flip flop necklaces embellished with real Swarovski crystals. She liked them so much that she commissioned three necklaces as gifts for her daughter's flower girls in her upcoming wedding.

The custom handmade necklaces were for her daughter's wedding colors were a beautiful lime green and deep purple colors. I was able to get the exact color match of the crystals, and they came out perfect! The three girls were a set of twins and a six-year old, so the twins received flip flops with a bright green center stone and purple bands, while the oldest received a deep purple center stone with the lime green bands.

If you are interested in commissioning some flip flop necklaces for a wedding or as a customized gift, contact me on how to get started!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Wedding Calligraphy: White Ink on Charcoal Envelopes

Calligraphy for Wedding Envelopes, $2 each
I have to admit, working on darker toned envelopes is always my favorite - because I get to use white ink, and I always am so happy with how they turn out! This couple met with me and after discussing their Boston wedding, gave me their charcoal envelopes with a cool map lining of Boston's Charles River. I thought this was such a cool, small personal touch - so between that and the white ink request, I was eager to get started!

The bride used a map of Boston's Charles River as an envelope liner!
The envelopes came out beautifully: it was about 100 outer envelopes that needed to be addressed in white ink calligraphy, as well as corresponding RSVP envelopes. Guests would mail their reply in with a small white envelopes included with the invitation made of gorgeous white paper - and I was able to make a custom ink mix to match the envelopes, to use for the response envelope address, which happened to be the bride's mother. They came out beautiful!

If you are looking for a unique touch for your wedding invitations, contact me for a wedding calligraphy consultation, and we'll get you started!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Bridal Contest: Win Free Wedding Calligraphy for Your Reception!

Are you on a bit of a budget, but would simply LOVE the look of wedding calligraphy at your reception? Place Cards, Table Numbers, Wedding Signage - even "reserved" cards for church pews, you could win a complete Ash Tree Wedding Calligraphy: Reception Package by entering the bridal contest giveaway!

Calligraphy for Reception Table Numbers, $2 each
To enter the contest, follow these instructions:
  • Copy and paste the following questions and post the answers in a comment to this post: 
    • You & Your Fiance's Full Name
    • Wedding Date & Location
    • Your Wedding Vision
    • What is your color palette? 
    • What are you looking to do specifically for your reception? (Place Cards, Escort Cards, Table Numbers, Wedding Signage, and any other ideas you have!) 
    • How many guests at your wedding?
The contest will run for 30 days - with a winner being selected on September 1st, 2012. You will be notified via Facebook if you are the winner, so be sure you "like" the page so I can find you!

Calligraphy for Wedding Place Cards, $1 each
Remember, you don't have to be getting married in the next month to win! All brides with a wedding date are eligible to enter :)

The winner will have 1 week to respond after being notified via Facebook that they have won. If there is no response, another winner will be selected.

I am based out of Somerville, MA, but you do not need to be local in order to win! I do bridal consultations, but have worked with many brides all over the country. Please note that this giveaway is for calligraphy services only, and you will be responsible for getting me the materials - so I can complete and ship back for you just in time for your big day :)

Monday, July 23, 2012

Handling Bad Business Review

I haven't posted in a good three months. Mostly, it's been time...but since I do love writing, I have to be honest: there was a reason my passion had slipped away.

As a (very) small business owner, it hits right to the heart when you come across a bad review of your business. Such a thing happened to me recently, and after much emotional grappling, I have come to terms with it and am trying to move on.

I'll start with a comment I read about employers today: they love seeing "entrepreneurship" on your resume, because it shows that you have personal accountability: taking your career into your own hands, rather than someone else's. And while I have built this wedding calligraphy business up from scratch since starting up five years ago, I am still one person. The buck stops with me - I made a mistake.

Calligraphy for Wedding Signs, $2 each

In this review, the bride had some valid points. I had dropped the ball, we had some miscommunication, and while she said my work was beautiful (a compliment she didn't need to make when dissatisfied), it still cuts to the core when you put everything you are into a business. I take pride in my work, and my goal has always been to have the bride over-the-moon excited for what I've been able to do for her, and when that doesn't happen, I hate to see it.

On the other hand, I can dispute some other points made in this review: but what would that solve? The damage has already been done, time has passed, and nothing will be able to change her mind. For example, one of the issues she had with me was that the ink color I used was inconsistent: some envelopes looked "darker" than others, and that was the only issue she had...and I know for a fact that she was simply wrong. This then transformed to a slew of other errors I was hearing for the first time in her review, which don't really give her much credibility.

I will say that I love this business. 99.9% of the time, the brides I work with are amazing, sweet and so much fun to work with. I love being able to do my part in making their wedding beautiful - especially in that first moment that one of their guests receives their invitation and are blown away by the first impression, which I love to hear!

So, I'm back to blogging. Contrary to my super-critical, take-everything-personal side, that bad review hasn't done any damage at all to my business. In fact, the amount of business I'm doing has DOUBLED since this time last year - with brides finding me both online and through fellow vendor and past bride referrals. All this makes me understand that I have high quality work, and shouldn't let one crazy bridezilla (okay, that was immature but makes me feel a bit better ;) stop me from doing what I love to do.

I continue to look forward to working with my brides, and doing whatever I can to make them happy!

Thanks to all my fabulous brides for being you,

Monday, May 14, 2012

Whimsical Wedding Calligraphy: Place Cards and Table Tents

Calligraphy for Wedding Receptions,
$4 tents (names on both sides) and $1 place cards
I just finished such a fun wedding reception calligraphy job! I met with my bride about a month ago who was desperately in need of a calligrapher to write out her wedding reception table tents and place cards for her wedding. She had her place cards screen printed, and had cut deep purple long cards for her table tents - both needed calligraphy to tie her reception theme together.

First, the table tents: instead of going with table numbers, she decided to name each of her tables after a fictional place, presumably from books and stories. For example, her table name list ranged from Wonderland, Hogwarts, The Shire, Treasure Island, and even Peter Pan's Neverland. It was such a whimsical theme, that her calligraphy definitely had to match. I recommended a lighter color ink (such as white, which is opaque and would stand out) for her deep purple tents so that the name would really pop - to keep with her color theme, she chose a light lavender ink color, which I custom - mixed to match her place cards. They came out beautiful!

Wedding Calligraphy for Place Cards, $1 each
Now for her place cards (above), she did the same whimsical floral print, but in two different card stock colors with two different inks, red and deep purple. She elected to have guests' names written out in the corresponding ink color that the place card was printed in, so I used red ink and mixed a deep purple to match the darker place cards. On the backs, she had the table names screen printed to inform guests where to go: it was a really great touch, because she took the distinct fonts the original places were printed in (for example, Hogwarts if you read the books or have seen the movies has a very distinct lightning bolt in its title) and had them printed on the back in deep purple, regardless of the color card. Take a look at a few of them, below:

Each table was named after a storybook place!
All in all, it was so fun to work on, and I love brides who take the extra step to make their wedding reception unique conceptually. Do you have an idea you'd like for your wedding reception, but need some help piecing it together? Contact me to get started on your wedding calligraphy project today!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Calligraphy Addressing: Wedding Envelope Etiquette

Calligraphy for Inner and Outer Envelopes, $2.50
I recently had a bride ask for best places to look for how to address her envelopes, because she wanted to keep them as formal as possible. Tired of trying to figure out how to address your envelopes to that same sex couple? Don't want to offend your recently widowed aunt?

The uncertainty stops here: stop second guessing and take a look below at this easy to read chart to help you put together your wedding invitation addresses! I've described nearly every situation you can have below: how to address to children under 18, unmarried couples who live together, etc. Hope this helps :)

Single Guests
Unmarried Female
Miss Jayne Jones
Ms. Jayne Jones
Miss Jones
and Guest
Ms. Jones
and Guest
Divorced Female-kept married name (Smith)
Mrs. Jayne Smith
Ms. Jayne Smith
Mrs. Smith
and Guest
Ms. Smith
and Guest
Divorced Female-back to married name (Jones)
Ms. Jayne Jones
Ms. Jones
and Guest
Widowed Female
Mrs. Jayne Smith
Mrs. John Smith
Mrs. Smith
(and Guest)
*never use 'and guest' if recently widowed.


Children under 18
*Do not put on outer envelope
Only list parents.
 (1 child) And Eva
(2+children) Eva and Lukas
*List by age-oldest first.
Child 18 and over
Miss Emily Jones
Miss Jones
and Guest


Unmarried couples who do not live together
Miss Jayne Jones
*the only name on the outer should be the person who lives at the address.
Miss Jones
Mr. Davis
Unmarried couples who live together
Miss Jayne Jones
Mr. Richard Davis
Miss Jones
Mr. Davis
Married couples-*notice the use of 'and' to signify marriage in the following:
Mr. And Mrs. Richard Davis
Mr. and Mrs. Davis
Married Couple-She kept maiden name
Mrs. Jayne Jones
and Mr. Richard Davis
Mrs. Jones and Mr. Davis
Married Couple-She has hyphenated last name
Mrs. Jayne Jones-Davis
and Mr. Richard Davis
Mrs. Jones-Davis and Mr. Davis
Married Couple-She has a professional title and he does not.
Doctor Jayne Davis
and Mr. Richard Davis
Doctor Davis
and Mr. Davis
Married Couple-both are doctors
Doctor Jayne Davis
and Doctor Richard Davis
The Doctors Davis
The Doctors Davis
Married Couple-both are doctors with different last names
Doctor Jayne Jones
and Doctor Richard Davis
Doctor Jones
Doctor Davis
Same sex Couples-list in alphabetical order by last name
Mr. Dan Smith
Mr. Thomas Jones
Mr. Smith
Mr. Jones


He is a commissioned officer
Colonel and Mrs. Richard Davis
Colonel and Mrs. Davis
He is a non-commissioned officer or enlisted man
Mr. And Mrs. Richard Davis
Mr. and Mrs. Davis
He is a retired commissioned officer
Colonel and Mrs. Richard Davis
Mr. and Mrs. Davis
She is a commissioned officer, he is not
Mr. and Mrs. Richard Davis
Captain Jane Davis
and Mr. Carl Davis
Mr. and Mrs. Davis
Captain Davis and Mr. Davis


The Honorable and Mrs. Richard Davis
Judge and Mrs. Davis
Reverend and Mrs. Richard Davis
Reverend and Mrs. Davis

Now that you've put together your wedding invitation list in the most formal way possible, do you need a wedding calligrapher to help give your invitations that personal touch? Contact Ash Tree Calligraphy to get started on your wedding calligraphy project today!

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