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Seattle Wedding Vendor Q&A: Rachel Johnson Calligraphy Co.

Today's installment of Friendor Friday is featuring the uber talented Rachel of Rachel Johnson Calligraphy Co! This badass babe has the pretty handwriting you ever did see (obviously!) and has done some really killer paper goods for us in the past. Basically anything you can dream up, Rachel can do. Her signs are amazing and her day of paper goods are seriously to die for! Keep reading for a ton of calligraphy and paper goods FAQs and Rachel's thoughts on all of them.

What types of items do you typically create for a wedding day?

Place cards, escort cards (to help guests find their seat), all kinds of signage including menu, bar menu and welcome signs, favor tags etc! Basically anything on paper (or other medium) or that could be included as a sign I do!

What wedding day paper goods do you suggest couples have at their wedding?

If you don’t do any other signs, I love the look of a welcome sign, it’s a fun way to add details to your ceremony or reception. Other things I suggest are place cards if you have a seating chart and also a bar and menu sign so people know what they’re eating and drinking! There are of course lots of other options too.

What are your favorite items to create?

My favorite items to create are items that people have a little bit of vision for but need help coming up with the final product - that’s where I come in! I love full reign of creativity when coming up for pieces at a wedding.

What is the difference between printed and hand lettered calligraphy? Which is more cost effective and why? When should I use printed vs. hand lettered?

This is a great question!The answer kind of depends on the item and purpose. Lots of people don’t realize that a calligrapher/lettering artist does everything by hand no matter what. There are no premade “fonts” or templates - the calligraphy and lettering you see on items I’ve done involves my personal style every single time. But, there are a couple ways this can actually get onto a sign or paper good.

Something that is printed - is lettering that needs to be reproduced, such as a menu that goes on each guest’s plate. To do each by hand, would be very inefficient. So basically what I would do is do it by hand first, and then scan it and create a file that would then be printed. Items that are created this way involve a design fee - but it’s still cheaper than having me hand calligraph 150 menus etc.!

Items often done by hand, are items where each one is different - place cards for example. To have me print these would be adding an extra step when I could just do them by hand. Lots of wooden signs and chalkboards are done by hand, since it is only one sign. Other items that I do by hand are envelope calligraphy, escort cards, seating charts, single signs.