Basic Materials You Need to Practice Calligraphy

Calligraphy has risen in popularity in the last few years, especially with the array of art tools that have been made available to collectors. A calligraphy set is also a perfect gift for family and friends who need to try new activities.

Here are some of the basic items you will need to start a new hobby.


Having an assortment of pens will allow you to make different combinations to create beautiful pieces. Stock up on ball point, gel, roller ball, fiber tip, drafting, fountain pens, highlighters, markers, and more. Any type of pen will do regardless of the price, ink or brand.

Nib Holders

There are different nib holders used for calligraphy, such as straight, oblique, and carrot. Artists differ in their opinion when it comes to choosing a nib holder for calligraphy beginners, but it’s usually a choice between straight and oblique holders. A straight holder or a straight dip pen looks like a regular pen, but it has a rubber tip that holds the nib. An oblique holder on the other hand, has an extra holder for the rubber rings. Try holding each of these types to see which one feels more comfortable in your hand, then consider the pen length that’s most ideal for you.


Next, you will need to choose nibs for the nib holder. Pens are cheap and easy to use, but the nibs offer more possibilities in calligraphy. Try different nibs on the nib holder and hold it as if you’re about to write. Make sure that the nibs fit, because you won’t be able to use them if they don’t. Choose from either the small (or maru size) or the comic (or regular size). There are also two types of nib shapes to choose from; the point and the Italic points. Point nibs are good for all types of writing, while Italic points are ideal for stylized scripts.


Any type of paper will do, but you should experiment on different surfaces and paper thickness while you’re still practicing. You might also want to keep a sketchpad handy to keep your finished pieces organized. Once you feel more confident with your skills, try writing on stationeries.

Inks and Brushes

For beginners, artists recommend either the India or Sumi ink, because they are easier to apply than other inks. Then you can try different inks once you have practiced enough. You will also need calligraphy and paint brushes as alternatives to the nibs. You can choose any brush as long as they feel comfortable in your hand.

Pencils and Other Items

Some calligraphers mix text with illustrations, so don’t be afraid to place different designs on the paper. There is no rule that says only the items listed above are used for calligraphy. Others even use color pencils, pastels, water-based and oil-based paints.

Written by Editor

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