Want to make your text sing? Or how about dance? Hand lettering turns the ordinary alphabet into something exciting—something that's as illustrative as it is functional. Created by individual typographers, an artist adds their distinctive flair to letterforms that pack each glyph with personality. The results elevate text that would otherwise be considered simply ordinary.
While it might seem like hand lettering is only meant for professional typographers, it’s not. Anyone can learn the art of lettering. With tutorials and online classes, you can understand the basics of how to create extraordinary words on the page. As you delve further into hand-drawn lettering, however, you’ll want to pick up some of the basic supplies. This includes special pens, pencils, and paper that’s ideal for creating flowing letterforms that capture the beauty of words.
And once you have all your supplies ready, why not turn to an expert to help you get started. My Modern Met Academy and lettering artist Danison Fronda have created the perfect online hand lettering course for beginners.
Ready to get started? Check out our selection of hand lettering tools, below.
Practice your handcrafted typography when you pick up these hand lettering tools.
Tombow Dual Brush Pen Markers (set of 10)
This highly-rated set of 10 Tombow pens is great for hand lettering. Not only do you have your choice in color, but choices of tips, too. One end of the marker is shaped like a tiny paintbrush. By applying varying amounts of pressure, you can get a calligraphy-like stroke. The other side of the pen has a fine tip for detail work and lines with a consistent weight. The set also includes a colorless blender pen to soften and combine colors for a watercolor-like effect.
Tombow Fudenosuke Brush Pen Markers (set of 10)
If the fine-tipped pen in the Tombow Dual Brush set doesn’t appeal to you, this pack of pens features only the paintbrush point. It is has a “hard tip” brush that will give you some variety in your stroke but will still be firm as you write. People love this pen for beginning hand lettering—but more experienced folks still swear by it as well.
Staedtler Lead Holder
It's always best to sketch your initial letterforms in graphite, and many hand letterers prefer the precise nature of a mechanical pencil. This lead holder by Staedtler creates super thin lines with the capability to hold a 2mm-wide lead. People also like the weight of this utensil. Unlike conventional plastic mechanical pencils, Staedtler’s holder is metal and feels good to hold in your hand.
Tombow for Ink & Pencil Mono Sand Eraser
Looking for an eraser that can get rid of your pencil or pen marks? This Tombow eraser is a mixture of sand and rubber that makes it possible to remove both.
Rhodia Graph Black Notepad
Graph paper is best for practicing your hand lettering because its gridded structure will ensure your forms are straight and proportional. People love using the Rhodia pad because of its high quality—it has a crisp, smooth finish ideal for using a brush pen.
Strathmore Tracing Pads
As you work on your penmanship, tracing paper is a must; it allows you to sketch over a letterform to perfect your techniques. A pad of Strathmore paper comes in a package of 50, and at nine inches wide, that’s plenty of space to trace.
Strathmore Bristol Pad
Once you’re ready to finalize your hand lettering, try doing so on a pad of Bristol sheets. The thick paper has an even surface that won’t break the flow of your letterforms.
12″ Stainless Steel Ruler
Make sure that your hand lettering is always straight with this twelve-inch stainless steel ruler.
Super Simple Hand Lettering: 20 Traceable Alphabets, Easy Projects, Practice Sheets & More!
If you’re looking for some guidance on how, exactly, to create beautiful alphabets, Kiley Bennett has produced 20 traceable alphabets to get you started lettering right away. In addition, the practice sheets have skill-building exercises and projects to make.
Lettering and Modern Calligraphy: A Beginner's Guide: Learn Hand Lettering and Brush Lettering
Filled with tips, tricks, and space to practice your typography, the Lettering and Modern Calligraphy book by Paper Peony Press is great for beginners. It features 15 projects that will build your hand lettering knowledge and formal skills. When complete, you can go on to create your own beautiful works of original art.
Floral Print Pencil Case
Between pencils, pens, and a ruler, you’ll want to make sure that you have a cute pencil case to store it all in! This large-capacity case in lush pastel colors is a perfect choice.