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Elissa Barr

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Italic Calligraphy Supply List-
Pen nibs - Speedball C1, C2, C3 and Mitchell 2½, 3, 3½ (N09, N04)
Nib holder - your choice of Speedball plastic OR double-ended nib holder (H23, H39)
(note of caution on hand-turned wooden holders - they are beautiful to look at BUT need to be selected in person to avoid ones that are too long or too heavy, too skinny or too fat)
Ruler - an 18-inch clear plastic such as a C-thru or Westcott is nice, or any other ruler that is 18-inches or longer (S944)
T-square - optional…this is very useful if you have or decide to purchase a drawing board with a metal straight edge. I recommend an acrylic edged T-square rather than metal, as there is less chance of getting marks on the paper from the metal (S623)
Mechanical pencil - thin lead is preferred over thick (0.05) (PL21)
Ink - Higgins Eternal OR Pelikan 4001. Please avoid acrylic inks for now…I prefer that you start with BLACK ink (I08, I04)
Paper - your choice of:
Borden & Riley #37 Boris marker paper in 11x14 or 14x17(P09)
John Neal Books Practice paper without grid lines (P20)
Other useful supplies - a writing surface…nice to have something smooth to do your work on such as a piece of foam board larger than your paper (S690); a rag or paper towels to clean your nibs (S817); a water container (S1005); removable scotch tape (in the blue package) (S699)


N09. Speedball C Calligraphy Nibs
American calligraphy nibs for Italic, Blackletter (Gothic, Old English), Uncial, Half Uncial, Foundational and many other hands or alphabets. C-0, C-1, C-2, C-3, C-4, C-5, C-6. C-0 is largest, C-6 is smallest. Best in larger sizes. C-2, C-3, & C-4 are popular for beginners’ classes. They rust easily so let them dry thoroughly before storing them away. Speedball C Calligraphy Nibs.

For more information about Speedball C nibs, click here.



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N04. Mitchell Nibs (Round Hand)
Mitchell Rexel Round Hand Nibs
Straight cut. Sizes 0(3.3mm), 1(3mm), 1-1/2(2.5mm),
2(2.3mm), 2-1/2(1.8mm), 3(1.4mm), 3-1/2(1mm),
4(0.9mm), 5(.75mm), 6(.6mm).

Flexible calligraphy nibs from England. Straight cut. Reservoirs are purchased separately. Though they are called Round Hand, these chisel edge nibs are good for many alphabets including Carolingian, ItalicUncials, Gothic, Foundational Hand, and Roman Caps. Used by professional calligraphers with and without the reservoirs. Some beginners may have trouble with the flexibility. One of our most popular nibs for calligraphy. Give them a try.

See N05 for Left Hand Mitchell Nibs.




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H23. Hunt Oblique Penholder
Speedball Oblique Pen holder

Black plastic hourglass shape penholder with offset for nib. For copperplate and Spencerian. The offset helps righthanders with the letter slant. Most lefthanders use a straight holder not this oblique holder. However, some use an oblique holder.

These pointed nibs work in this holder: Hunt 22, Hunt 56, Hunt 99, Hunt 100, Hunt 101, Hunt 103, Hunt 104,
Gillott 170, Gillott 303, Gillott 404, Gillott 1950
Hiro 700, Esterbrook 354, Brause Rose Nib.
The Nikko G nib will work okay, but the holder is not ideal for this nib.

Gillott 659 does NOT work with this holder; use H75 (Gillott Holder #51) instead.

The EF Principal does not work in this holder. See H48 Ziller Oblique Holder (Size) PRIN, and both the Blackwell Holders H50, H61



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H39. Double Pen Holder
Double Nib Holder
You can insert a nib in each end of this short penholder. A smooth cylinder, not faceted. Interior metal collar, metal grippers. 4.75".

How do I insert a calligraphy nib into a penholder that has a metal ring and four prongs?



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S944. Westcott 2x18 inch Graph Ruler
S944. Westcott 8ths Graph Beveled Transparent Ruler 2"x18". No. b-85

These handy 8ths graph rulers are transparent for visibility and beveled to accommodate work with ink. Edges are calibrated to 16ths to the inch with a zero centering scale down the middle. Laminated for durability.

Now labeled Westcott instead of C-Thru.



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S623. 18" Wooden T-Square with Acrylic Edge
S623. 18" Wooden T-Square with Acrylic Edge

Solid construction wooden T-square. Raised acrylic edge prevents smudging and smearing when inking lines (no measurements marked).



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PL21. Pentel GraphGear 500 Mechanical Pencils
PL21. Pentel GraphGear 500 Mechanical Pencil

This technical drafting pencil with an industrial design features a 4mm fixed sleeve for template work and technical drawings. Metallic-mesh grip for precision and control. Top click, stationary eraser and tip. Pencil includes one tube of HB lead.

Choose lead size: 0.3, 0.5, 0.7, 0.9mm.
Barrel colors : 0.3 Brown, 0.5 Black, 0.7 Blue, 0.9 Gray
Refill leads are item PL22
Eraser Refills are item PL23



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I08. Higgins Eternal Ink
I08. Higgins Eternal Ink.

A non-waterproof, carbon black ink for dip pens. Our most popular ink for classes. Recommended for copperplate (add a few drops of gum arabic). Perhaps the best ink for calligraphy for a beginner; it will cause the beginner the fewest problems. This ink will bleed more readily than other inks. If bleeding is a problem try Sumi Inks. 2.5 oz.

Quantity discounts start at 6 & 12.

"For broad-pen writing, I add gouache to Higgins Eternal. Gouache gives Eternal some needed body. It doesn't necessarily have to be black gouache. Indigo or a dark red add an interesting hue to the result. In a quarter ounce of Eternal, I add about a 3/8 inch bead of gouache from a tube. Eternal doesn't give me the hairlines I want in pointed pen work, so for that I much prefer iron gall or walnut ink". - Bob Hurford




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I04. Pelikan 4001 Ink
I04. Pelikan 4001 Ink.

A superior dye ink primarily for fountain pen use. Will flow dependably. If ink has dried in pen, soak the pen in plain water. Non-waterproof.

Choose from these colors in a 2oz glass bottle: Brilliant Black, Royal Blue, Brilliant Brown, Violet, Brilliant Red, Turquoise

Choose this color in a 1oz glass bottle: Dark Green

I04. Pelikan 4001 Ink Color Chart




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P09-50. Boris Layout Pad 50 Sheets
Boris Layout Pad
Bright White Felt Marker Layout Pad (#37). 50 sheets.

A smooth, translucent sheet that is highly recommended. No bleeding or feathering. Popular for beginning classes, and for copperplate for reproduction. Our most popular pad. From Borden & Riley.

Choose 9x12, 11x14, or 14x17 inches.

For tracing, Cotton Comp pads are recommended. Cotton Comp is easier to see through than the Boris Layout Pad.

Formerly P10-50, P11-50, & P12-50




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