How The Bird House Began...
When I was about 11 years old I won a massive amount of Pentel stationery in a competition in Mizz magazine. (A year later I won a personal CD player and a years supply of Starburst but that's a story for a different time) I mean a HUGE amount. It came in a big Pentel rucksack. Pencils, Gel Pens, Markers, Roller Ball, Erasers, Pencil Crayons, Fountain Pens, Highlighters... you name it, it was in the bag. I had always loved stationery before I won this competition but winning this just made my love for it grow even more.
My favourite thing as a kid was getting new stationery, I used to write my name in every single new pen or pencil I would get for Christmas or Birthdays to test it out and see which were my favourites, Stationery Box was a firm favourite high street shop of mine. Choosing a new pencil case for a new school year was a high light of the summer holidays.
I always knew I wanted to be an actor growing up, I never wanted to do anything else, when I got back from a years contract playing Jan in Grease the musical I had a lot of time on my hands in between auditions and teaching drama and I started to look for a new hobby, as stationery has always been a big love of mine I decided to try my hand at calligraphy. To say the least I did not realise how hard it was going to be! I bought 'Modern Calligraphy' by Lucy Edmonds and set about teaching myself. Hours were spent at the dining room table with copious amounts of pens and paper practising and when I look back at some of my early work it makes me CRINGE! I made a piece for a friend when I first started and I went to visit a few months ago and saw it framed in her kitchen it was awful in my eyes and so amateur. I'm so glad I spent so many hours practising my craft!
I spent the whole summer of 2017 hand lettering and began to send photos to my family and friends of what I'd been doing and sharing it on my personal Instagram page and was soon asked to create designs for my loved ones.
I started spending all my spare cash on inks, cards and nibs and began to do quotes and cards for family and friends. My wonderful Husband (Fiance at the time) said I should start selling them on Etsy, I didn't think anyone would buy them but they did!
I soon branched out into wedding stationery when I was planning my wedding as there were a lot of things I wanted but couldn't find so created them myself!
Starting a business from scratch was probably the craziest idea I've ever had. Not many people would turn their hobby into a business, but I'm so glad I did as what was my little side hustle in between acting jobs has turned into a full time job! It has been my saving grace during this crazy lockdown period, I can't wait to get back to acting when lockdown is over but for now I'm loving how much my business has grown and grown. I've had almost 4000 sales on Etsy in just under 3 years so I thought it was time to start my own website, and here it is!
The Bird House Calligraphy is in full swing and I'm so grateful for my supportive customers and clients. It is still massively early doors and I know that The Bird House Calligraphy isn't going to become a global success just yet (although I do sell all over the world!) but I'm looking forward to what's in store and I'm learning everyday, I'm learning new skills, I'm learning about business in general, I'm learning, unfortunately that people can be jealous of your success and try and bring you down but you need to rise above it and I'm learning to be grateful for how much my business has grown.
The Bird House Calligraphy has been a God send during this time of uncertainty with no acting work and I'm grateful that it's growing and growing.
I hope you enjoy my new website!