Monday, December 30, 2013

Navy and Yellow Nautical Baby Shower

Yellow and Navy Nautical Baby Shower Invite, $12 for template
So much has happened since my last few posts! I'll definitely make some updates over the next few weeks, but thought I'd start here. In September, I put together a baby shower for one of my best friends expecting a baby boy. I worked with her mother and one of her friends, and I had a blast int he process!

One of the only themes I had to work with was "baby-preppy" when trying to figure out the decor. Once we secured a Yacht Club for the shower location (both the mommy-to-be and my families have memberships there) I figured you don't get more preppy than nautical - and for a baby boy, let's get away from the powder blue and make the theme "preppy" with navy blue and yellow.

Handmade Baby Boy Shower Banner - Navy, Yellow, and White
The Banner

A lot of this shower involved me just making / designing things because I couldn't find exactly what I was looking for. The first of which was the banner saying, "Welcome baby Carter!" I bought cardstock in alternating yellow and navy patterns, cut into triangle pendants, and printed out the letters on Avery Circle Label templates to stick on. All of them were glued on a satin white ribbon and strung up right when you walked in - and it looked awesome! (I looked pretty hilarious on the floor of my apartment putting these together ;)

Navy Blue and Yellow Diaper Cake
The Diaper Cake

These are actually easier than I thought to make. I bought a cake platter for a base (TJ Maxx had a really cute white one with Gold ribbon accent) then a container of baby powder for the center. I also got rubber bands - both small and x-large - to roll up the diapers, and a preppy navy blue ribbon to wrap around the cake (I was going to hang toys off of it and shit, but the thing would have looked tacky. We were going for a more chic-awesomeness, here :) and some yellow flowers for accents - both from Michael's. 

I used Newborn size diapers, rolled each of them with a small rubber band. Then you layer them in a circle around the baby powder, and secured all of them with the large rubber band (it's helpful if you have another person to help you out - they can hold the diapers in place when you put the band on them). I did a few "layers" around, and built the cake up from there. Then I put the ribbon over the bands, added a few yellow flowers for pop, and topped it off with a little teddy bear. It was adorable :)

The Diaper Station

These were just funny, and I found the idea admittedly on Pinterest. It was basically another excuse to load up my friend with as many diapers as possible, because I know they are definitely something you blow through!

This was also super easy to put together. Found a cute basket - TJ Maxx again - and loaded it up with diapers - think I used size 2 because the Newborn sizes are really tiny to write on.

Late Night Diaper Station: Basket, Instructions, Diapers & Sharpies!

Some late-night diaper ideas :)
The Favors

The favors I made matched the invitation - also something I designed after the scouring the internet and coming up with nothing that worked for me. I designed these cute "Ready to Pop!" baby shower favor tags that I cut up, hole-punched, and tied with navy ribbon to bags of caramel popcorn. It was completely adorable and easy to do!
Ready to Pop baby shower template, $8
"Ready to Pop!" Nautical Baby Favors
The shower was a blast, and I loved putting it together! I decided to make some of the things I've designed available for download at my Etsy shop, in the event you are also in need for something fabulous. All of the files are customizable - I've done a few different variations, both in color and text. Shoot me a convo if you're interested or if you have any questions!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

An Elegant Charcoal Grey and White Wedding: Wedding Calligraphy

Calligraphy for Wedding Invitation Envelopes, $4.50 for set pictured
I love it when my brides follow up with images of their wedding!! Pictured below is some custom calligraphy work I did for a May 2013 wedding. The bride's colors were a beautiful elegant charcoal grey and white: I custom-mixed the grey color to match her invitations for both her outer envelope addressing and response envelope address for her invites.

Arrange your escort cards around a striking floral arrangement

Then a few months later, I did her place cards for her wedding - and these were so fun! I LOVE the way white ink looks on any dark cardstock or envelope - it has such a dramatic, striking look. The cards were on the larger side, so I was able to do very large letters for the flourished names.

Calligraphy for Wedding Escort Cards, $1.50 each

Calligraphy for escort cards, $1.50 each
 If you are looking for a calligrapher to help out with your wedding - for invitations, escort cards, or both - shoot me an email on how we can get started!

Monday, September 9, 2013

Wedding Ceremony Calligraphy: Certificate of Marriage

Custom Wedding Ceremony Calligraphy Document
 In the throes of wedding calligraphy season, I took a chance on a custom project and am SO glad that I did! A couple approached me in July of this year to commission a custom Commitment to Marriage document in calligraphy. There were a few elements that they were looking for in their document, and I've included a few images of the finished product: (Visit the Ash Tree Calligraphy Facebook Page to see more images!)

1) Lines for Guests' Signatures. The purpose of the wedding document was not only to write down vows that the couple promised each other, but for guests to participate in the ceremony by signing as witnesses and promising to support the couple in their marriage.

For this couple, it required about 117 lines - one for each guest. Though they initially wanted 3 columns of lines, we were actually able to fit the right amount of space with exactly 4 columns instead.

2) Color Palette. After consulting with the groom, we discussed that brown ink with tones of green would best match their wedding colors - and I recommended using a light cream color paper, as the colors would look best.

I was able to incorporate all of these colors in different areas of the wedding document  - including "illuminating" the first letter of a few lines with the green accent over the brown.

3) Illustrations. After a previous illustration of the California coastline I did last season for a destination save-the-date, this was another request to place a design element in addition to calligraphy on the document - and as an artist, I'm always up for that challenge!

Involve guests in your ceremony with their signatures!
We looked at three stock images of trees that the couple liked, and I used those as inspiration to create my own - tying in all of the document colors of brown and shades of green. The tree was meant to be a simple accent, while also representing the strength and sturdiness of their marriage. They opted for two identical, mirrored trees on each side of the top of their document.

There was also a slight flourish to graphically separate the signatures of the couple to the promises of the guests - I used the darker green tone to tie into the document and added leaf elements.

4) Size. Lastly, this document was also the largest I've created to-date! The final finished project was about 15" x 22" in size - I provided the paper to make sure it was archival and could withstand the test of time. I also recommended that once it is framed and matted, placing documents such as this in areas of little natural sunlight to decrease the chances of fading.

Looking for your own custom calligraphy project? Shoot me an email about what's on your mind for design, and let's get to work!

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Reception Calligraphy: Table Tents and Place Cards

Table names instead of table numbers in calligraphy, $2 each
 Just showcasing a few recent client-supplied calligraphy images from her wedding reception:

Wedding Calligraphy for your guests' place cards!
The bride and her fiance were big book lovers, so they named each of their tables after fictional places: such as Hogwarts, Neverland, The Shire, etc. The names were written horizontally with a custom-mixed lavendar ink on deep purple, long table tents.

Table Tents for Wedding Reception Tables, $2.00 each

Her place cards were silkscreened in red and deep purple ink as well on both pink and lavender shades of cardstock. I wrote out the place card names in calligraphy for each guest, and the mix of color for the place cards was both refreshing and gave the place card display a real pop!!

Calligraphy for Wedding Place Cards, $1.50 each
Looking for calligraphy for your wedding reception? Shoot me an email and we'll talk about how we can make your reception special :)

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Calligraphy for Your Wedding Photo Booth

Dress Up Your Reception with Some Signage in Calligraphy! $2
Lots of brides are doing fun activities for guests at their reception, such as video or photo booths. Why not dress up the reception a bit with some signage in calligraphy to tell guests what's what?

Tell guests where to go and what to do!
This bride wanted to do just that, so I did "Photo Booth" in calligraphy on beautiful handmade paper to fit into a chic horizontal frame for her to hang at her reception. We can do these in conjunction with your table numbers or place cards, and they definitely add a special touch to your big day!

Email me to find out more about the process, or to discuss any custom signage project that is in your heart :)

Monday, July 1, 2013

Wedding Invitation Calligraphy for Navy Ink

Calligraphy for Wedding Save-the-Dates, $3 each

Completely new font style for a recent wedding calligraphy for a save the date job: the bride really wanted to get as close to her STD font as possible, So I did some creative re-working of my custom style to try and match it - and the result was gorgeous!

This was also a custom-ink calligraphy job, where I was able to match the ink of her Save-The-Date envelope liners to a rich navy ink color for her guests' addresses in calligraphy.

Custom wedding calligraphy ink address

If the idea of sending out Save the Dates makes you sad because of significant wrist-cramping, shoot me an email on how we can get started!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Wedding Album Calligraphy

Another trend I've noticed and been doing quite a lot lately is calligraphy for wedding albums. Newlywed brides are inquiring if I am able to do their names and wedding dates in calligraphy on the first page of their wedding album - and of course I can!

Wedding Album Calligraphy: $15
This is a great, unique idea post-ceremony that can really help you remember the day. For those brides who are putting together their own album rather than ordering an album from their photographer, this is an even more special touch. I've done wedding album calligraphy on two Rag and Bone photo albums, which are gorgeous quality that I highly recommend if you are shopping for the perfect album to remember your big day. 

If you haven't gotten married yet but don't want to forget, we can also do this before the wedding! This bride also had me do some wedding reception signage in calligraphy, and left her album with me to complete as well.

Add your names and wedding date to your album!

I couldn't have been happier with the finished product: the album was in neutral earth tones with a small tree on the back corner cover, so I recommended a rich brown ink that would complement the album without being too harsh, like black ink would. She also loved the look of all lower-case letters, which was also an option.

Interested in adding a special touch to remember your wedding day? I've worked with brides from NYC to Utah, so contact me on how to get started today!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Bar Menu Calligraphy

Open Bar Menu in Calligraphy, $5 each
The ceremony is over, and it's time to party! Let guests know what beverages are available at your reception with a stunning bar menu in calligraphy.

A bride recently commissioned several signs for her wedding's open bar, which depicted all alcohol available for guests to choose from. This saves time -as each guest is not asking the bartender what drinks are available, then having to make a decision - as well as gives something for guests to look at and make their drink selections while waiting in line at the bar. And we all know less time thinking + more time drinking = happy guests!

Wedding Signature Drink in Calligraphy, $5 each

Another option that is increasing in popularity recently is the "Signature Drink". For those who chose a more simple drink selection for their wedding reception, this offers guests a single cocktail to eliminate the guesswork. Typically served in addition to a basic wine and beer selection, the signature drink is also a great opportunity to showcase your creativity or celebrate your uniqueness as a couple. For example, the bride above created a "Moortini" for her signature drink - and her menu in calligraphy breaks down the ingredients as well as a sweet caption on the drink itself: "A little but of sweetness with a pinch of love". Adorable.

Want to kick your reception up a notch with custom menus in calligraphy? Prices vary slightly depending on what you are looking for, but a ballpark is about $5 per menu. Shoot me an email to talk about your ideas, and let's make your reception the best it can be!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Charcoal Ink Calligraphy for Wedding Invitations

Inner and Outer Envelope Invitation Calligraphy, $3.50 per set
It's definitely peak calligraphy season! I've had the opportunity to work with many wonderful brides this past month, and I can't wait to get images of my work to share. This latest client had gorgeous ecru colored envelopes with a rich charcoal gray ink liner for her inner envelopes.

I was able to custom-match the charcoal gray ink for the outer and inner envelope addresses in calligraphy: and they came out beautifully. The client bride was from New York, so after a phone consultation we decided on a style that would best match her wedding theme - flourished with a slight tilt to the right, similar to the text used to create her invitation ( you can see a small piece of the invite in the top left in the image below)

We will also be working together as we get closer to her wedding on calligraphy for her rehearsal dinner invitations: those will be a smaller job size, but definitely an elegant touch for her special day!

Calligraphy for outer wedding invitation envelope only, $3

I've captioned the images so you can see pricing if you are considering wedding calligraphy for your invites - for an inner and outer envelope, it comes to $3.50 per set, and for just the outer envelope only, this is just $3 each. If you have the budget for calligraphy, it definitely saves that last-minute stress and hassle of addressing your invitations - especially if your guest count reaches the triple-digits!

Interested in calligraphy? I've worked with brides all over the country to help make a statement with their wedding's first impression - the invitation. Shoot me an email to set up your consultation today, discuss your style and pick any color ink you desire :)

Monday, May 13, 2013

Calligraphy Labels for Wedding Reception

Food labels in calligraphy for wedding reception, $2 each
A few months back, I had the pleasure of working with my 2012 calligraphy giveaway contest winner in helping her out with free calligraphy signage for her wedding. The bride needed signage for her buffet-style reception, as well as for her drink menu for the bar.

This is such a great idea for brides who are looking to do a buffet-style dinner for their guests - having calligraphy food labels at each station lets guests know exactly what they are getting, eliminates guesswork and constant questioning of waitstaff, as well as give something for guests to read / think about while waiting in line.

Calligraphy food labels for wedding reception, $2 each

The bride was also kind enough to send me the two images above from her wedding - she had taken the labels I had written in calligraphy and placed them in small frames next to each appropriate dish.

"Ash Tree Calligraphy work is amazing! She is very responsive, accommodating and has an amazing talent...She did my place cards, food labels and drink signage and everyone thought it was such a nice touch to our special day! You should definitely use this company!!" - Candice, Wedding 3/16/2013

Pics of the calligraphy food labels right from my desk!

Thinking about adding another personal touch to your wedding reception? I've worked with brides all over the country to make their day perfect - shoot me an email to see what we can do to make your wedding special!

Image credits: Andrew Nyholt, photographer - 

Thursday, April 18, 2013

For Boston Marathon Victims: New Peace-Theme Charm Bracelet Line

Dove Charm Necklace, $28
Like so many other Bostonians last Monday, I stared at Twitter, online video, and news reports in shock. I found out at work about the Boston Marathon tragedy, and when I got home I watched the news in horror as it began to sink in. From the hour long drive from my office listening to somber radio broadcasts and the number of injured rising, to a woman hysterical crying in her car asking me for directions to get back on the Tobin so she could get to Boylston, it really hit home.

Double Heart Charm Bracelet, $28

I watched, as I'm sure all of America did, the video of the bombs over and over again. It's disturbing and unsettling. I've lived in Fenway for five years, Somerville for one, and in Chelsea - right off the Tobin- for one. I've walked down Newbury and Boylston countless times, shopping or going out to eat / drinks. This was my home, and I felt powerless.

Shortly after we began to process the news, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick and Boston Mayor Menino announced the formation of The One Fund Boston, the purpose of which is to raise money to help those families most affected by the tragic events that unfolded during the Marathon.

I found as an artist the best way I could process this was to donate as well. I don't have much, but I have seen success with my She's the First Cupcake Necklace design, of which proceeds go to support girls' education in the developing world. So I designed the Ash Tree "Peace" Bracelet Collection, where 50% of proceeds will go directly to One Fund Boston. I chose a dove and a peace sign, to hopefully promote the idea of peace in this world. The last charm is a double heart, designed to represent and remind us of our loss here, but give us the strength to move forward.

“I am humbled by the outpouring of support by the business community and individuals who are united in their desire to help; The One Fund Boston will act as a central fund to receive much needed financial support. At moments like this, we are one state, one city, and one people.”
 - Governor Patrick

Peace Sign Charm Bracelet, $28
I propped and photographed all next to my favorite Boston Red Sox visor, and got them up on my Etsy site as soon as I could. I'm hoping that something as small as this can make a bit of a difference and we can all move through our own healing processes.

Thanks to all of my customers for your continued support - we'll all get through this together.

God bless,

Monday, April 15, 2013

Wedding Reception Calligraphy: Food Labels for Buffet Stations

Calligraphy signs for your wedding buffet food stations!

This was a fun, unique project that I had never done before: a bride recently commissioned me to do food labels for her wedding reception in calligraphy - that is, she was having a buffet and wanted guests to know what was available at each buffet station.

Buffet Food Station Signs in Calligraphy, $2 each
This is another great idea to dress up your reception a bit - and buffet stations are a fun way to inform guests what's available to eat (without the guessing) - especially when they are waiting in line.

Looking for wedding calligraphy for your wedding reception? Most signage takes just a week to turn around, and ink can be custom mixed to match your wedding palette perfectly. Contact me on how to get started!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Wedding Calligraphy for Reception Signage

Calligraphy for Wedding Reception Signage, $2 each

Wedding signage for your reception is a fun way to dress up your reception, let your personality shine through, as well as play up your wedding's theme. I just received these adorable images from a past wedding calligraphy client and wanted to share.

She had a nautical wedding on Cape Cod, so much of her theme was conveyed in the colors she chose: such as navy, white, and red. Above is a sign I did for her breaking down for guests what was in her Signature drink, and it was held up by a monkey's fist sailor knot - great idea!

"Reserved" Signs in Calligraphy for your wedding ceremony, $2 each

The reception isn't the only place you can use signage for - I also created several "Reserved" Signs in calligraphy navy ink to be placed in pews reserved for close friends and family during the ceremony.

Add fun signage in calligraphy for your wedding reception!

When guests arrived at the reception space, the bride provided the girls with the option of ditching their heels for more comfortable red flip-flops for dancing. The calligraphy sign for this was just fun - "Sole Mates", in red to match the shoes and her theme.

Wedding Calligraphy for Table Numbers, $2 each

Lastly, the same idea of her signature drink carried through onto her reception table, where I also wrote her table numbers in calligraphy. The numbers in red ink were the perfect touch to once again sit on top of a monkey's fist sailor know.

If you are looking for a unique, handmade touch for your wedding reception with signage in calligraphy? Contact me today for a wedding calligraphy consultation, and we'll get you started!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Rune Charm Necklaces

In the 5 years I've maintained this blog, my Rune Necklaces post from 2010 continues to be the most popular post on my site. So I decided to give an update to the post with some fresh new images and feature my latest rune necklaces now available for purchase online at my Ash Tree Designs etsy shop. Read the four available now below, and let me know if you're looking for any specific rune that I haven't posted yet - I'll be happy to get it up for you.

Raido - "Journey" Necklace, $12
Journey Rune Necklace - Raido, $12
Raido is the rune of the journey. Meaning arrival, departure, or reunion, Raido stands for an movement and direction, as well as an overseas adventure. Those who wear this rune carry the knowledge to follow the cycle of life to progress quickly and efficiently. It's time to embrace the hard times knowing that the harder it is now, the easier it will get in the future. It is the perfect gift for someone who has been going through a difficult time, and is a symbolic reminder of their struggle.

Jera - "Success" Necklace, $15
Success Rune Necklace - Jera, $15
In the Runic Alphabet, "Jera" is J or Y: A year, a good harvest. The results of earlier efforts are realized and a time of peace and happiness, fruitful season. It can break through stagnancy. Hopes and expectations of peace and prosperity. The promise of success earned. Life cycle, cyclical pattern of the universe. Everything changes, in its own time. Makes a thoughtful college or graduate school graduation gift.

Othila "Prosperity" Necklace, $15
Prosperity Rune Necklace - Othila, $15
Othila is the rune of prosperity. Meaning home or homeland, hearth, or family, Othila stands for an adventurous nature, culture maturity, adaptability, and personal skill. Those who wear this rune carry the strength of their family with them, as it can represent your spiritual home: very unique and recommended housewarming gift.

Dagaz "Hope" Necklace, $15

Hope Rune Necklace - Dagaz, $15
Lastly, we have Hope. This particular listing is black and gold, but is also available in the silver/black combo and vice versa. In the Runic Alphabet, "Dagaz" is D. Meaning breakthrough, awakening, awareness: daylight clarity as opposed to nighttime uncertainty. A time to plan or embark upon an enterprise. The power of change directed by your own will, transformation. Hope and happiness, the ideal. Security and certainty. Growth and release. Balance point, the place where opposites meet.

Don't see the rune or the meaning you are looking for? There are many more runes available for purchase that haven't made it into listings yet. Shoot me a convo to get your own special order, and carry the energizing rune meanings with you every day :)

Monday, March 18, 2013

Wedding Reception: Red Tag Place Cards with White Ink on Mason Jars

I did a blog post about working with this bride's wedding reception calligraphy a while back, but just recently got some beautiful images from her nautical-themed wedding.

Red tags with white calligraphy on mason jars for favors!

Navy blue, red, and white played a big role in her reception, (she had table number cards with instructions on how to eat a lobster-cute!) and she decided to do her place cards using red tags with white ink calligraphy featuring each guests name attached to Mason jars, which served as wedding favors.
Matched perfectly with the white and red straws

If you ever get the opportunity to use white ink on a colored cardstock for your place cards, or white ink on dark envelopes for your wedding invitations, USE IT! It makes for such a striking contrast and impression. Enjoy the photos!

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

Image credit: Stacey Kane Photography,

Monday, March 11, 2013

Brushed Silver Shamrock Charm Necklace

Brushed Silver Shamrock Charm Necklace, $28
Well, the dreaded / much celebrated St. Patrick's Day has just about arrived, and what better way to welcome it with a lovely brushed silver shamrock charm necklace?

As with many other pieces in my Ash Tree design collections, this Silver Shamrock Necklace has a meaning behind it. The most popular shamrock meaning was from in Ireland around the fifth century, where St. Patrick was introducing and establishing Christianity among the people there. He utilized the three-leaf clover as an illustration of the holy trinity, with each leaf representing the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. The tree sections are also symbolic of the three theological virtues found in the first Corinthians 13:13 - "Faith, Hope, and Love".

To this day, the spiritual meaning of the shamrock continues to be iconic of St. Patrick's teachings, though it was also revered by Ancient Celts because of its trinity as well. A myriad of their beliefs were also based on triads according to the artists of the time, and the occurrence of 3's were aspects of goddesses, gods,  time, and the balance of energies.

(Source: What's Your Sign? Symbolic Shamrock Meaning)

Now that you more thoroughly understand the symbolism behind the shamrock, get your own Silver Shamrock Necklace at a reasonable price for this St. Patrick's day - also makes a great gift for the Irish gal ;)

Share and Enjoy!

Blog Widget by LinkWithin