This is a succinct list of everything that I use on a daily basis and I would struggle without one of these in my life, dramatic but true!
I'll start with the basics and that would be my pen holder and calligraphy ink. Read my detailed post on my favourite penholder and nib here which includes the Luis Creations Moblique Pen Holder in English Rose.
Then the ink would have to be Higgins Eternal Black Ink which was the first ink that I tried back in 2016 when I first started modern calligraphy. It really is the best for colour intensity and ease of use, it's a permanent black ink. This is worth noting as I may have accidentally knocked over a full bottle which ran into my desk drawer of calligraphy supplies and dripped onto our cream carpet!!! I managed to get most of it out with a carpet cleaner and half persuaded the hubby the dark marks were just a shadow...ooops! Another thing worth noting is that there is also a Higgins Calligraphy Ink, however I didn't really get along with this one, I felt like it was really watery and didn't have as much of the colour pay off as you got with the Eternal Ink. It comes in a large 73.9ml (no idea why so random) plastic pot which lasts a very long time and it's great value for what you get!
The next item is for any calligraphy where I have to write on a straight line which is often! I resisted purchasing this for a while but actually, it makes such a big difference! And that is my laser level light. I hate drawing pencil lines and rubbing them out regardless of how light they are, it's just a faff and also a massive pain if I accidentally smudge any of the ink. So this has been life-changing, it's so easy to use and saves me so much time. The one I have linked to is just a cheap one from eBay which I've had for a couple of years now and has been absolutely fine, though does smell like a garden centre every time I use it...so glamorous! There are so many out there, so invest in one that you like!
This leads me onto my next item, my pink cutting mat, it doesn't have to be pink but I love it! This is the standard rubber mats you used to get in Art class to use scalpels on. It's a PVC, double sided, non-slip mat with grid lines printed onto it so using it with the laser light is perfect. I love how easy it is to keep things straight and can double up as a mouse mat for your desk! You can get these in most craft shops and online too.
My last must have sounds a bit boring but again, it's great value for money and does the job I need it to perfectly and that's printer paper! Sometimes you just need good quality sheets of white paper to practice on and create rough designs with that aren't going to cost you a fortune. My favourite is the HP Premium A4 100gsm paper which you can get in packs of 250 sheets and works well with the Higgins Eternal Ink, it doesn't bleed and I can use each sheet both front and back!
What are your must haves for modern calligraphy?
Leave me a comment below!