DIY Lifestyle

Learning To Handletter

May 10, 2016

Have you ever wanted a random talent, that you could just whip out and impress a group of people with, or to have something interesting to show? I have.

It’s not that I don’t have skills, it’s just they largely don’t translate to something quick and visable. Saying “I have random knowledge about the various classes of animals found around the globe and the odd quirks varous species posses” isn’t exactly conversational. And it tips people off to how weird I am.

So I decided to learn a tangible skill that will help me creatively and look hella awesome when I am doodling on papers at a coffee shop. I decided to learn how to Handletter.

There is a really cool startup in Charlotte called Skillpop, which is basically a community-driven way for people to access in-person classes on a variety of subjects. They teach everything from photography basics, to blogging basics, to graphic design, to urban chicken farming – anything you can think of really – as well as handlettering. I’ve taken a class before from them, and really love the affordable price, the small classroom size, and the interactive format. It essentially works as a pop-up class, where they are hosted by various businesses around Charlotte. Cool, right?

I had seen their handlettering classes on Instagram, and been dying to get into one. They fill up quickly, so it’s always a crapshoot. Luckily, I was tweeting with Skillpop and they let me know the May 7th class had two openings! I immediately signed up and told Megan to plan on coming to Charlotte for a #BestFriendDay!

The class was amazing. The teacher, Kaley Olsen, has been doing handletter for ~3 years, and we went through each letter of the alphabet, practicing on paper for almost two hours. At the beginning, it was tough going. My A’s looked awful, and I was hoping that my new skill goal wasn’t going to be a distant dream. As we continued practicing though, the letters got prettier and the words looked nicer.

Sidenote: Both Skillpop classes I’ve taken have been hosted at Hygge (pronounced Hoo-Ga), a co-working space over near the Panthers Stadium. Aside from the skillpop classes, I’ve attended meetups with other professionals at different co-working spaces. I love the abundance of co-working spaces here in Charlotte (we lived near one in Greenville, and I attended many events at the Boardroom in Anchorage), and I love how they’re helping to provide workspace and interactions for entrepreneurs and small businesses who may not be able to afford a true office space. As someone who has worked remotely or from home my entire career, I just love being able to go work somewhere with social interactions that isn’t a coffee shop.

But anyways, we left the Skillpop class with a newfound confidence in pretty handwriting, and met some really nice people in the group.GroupShotViaSkillpopImage via Skillpop

Immediately hooked, we went out to buy supplies to be able to continue practicing our new trade: sharpies and sketch books. I even got the chance to write a new welcome sign on our newly painted Chalkboard wall!


Overall, I am so excited to add this skill to my skillset. I fully plan on making my own cards, creating my own wall graphics, and who knows: maybe I’ll get good enough to open an Etsy store. So many fun projects abound!




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