workshop updates

photo credit: galina dixon

photo credit: galina dixon styling by megan morton

Hello lovely readers. This is just a quick note to pop in and say hello.  When I finally finished my website design  last year, I was so happy that I could easily post on my blog. Easier said than done. As you know, I am a busy mom of 4.5 year old twins, and they are about to start kindergarten in the fall. In December, we must have toured a dozen schools and I found only ONE school here in Oakland that still incorporates cursive handwriting in their curriculum. This is a subject for another post, but it makes me so sad that in our lifetime we may see this vanish from our schools all together. Based on the amount of students attending my workshops, it gives me hope that there are still many people interested in it, and they will teach their kids so on and so forth. I wanted to give you a brief update about my workshops since I last posted.

First, I am excited that the workshop that I collaborated with Elizabeth Messina  Mindy Rice, Elizabeth Colling, Mindy Weiss, Wiley Valentine, and Found Rentals last September will be published in Hearth Magazine  issue No. 3. You can order a copy of this beautiful magazine here.

In October I taught a few (eight) workshops in Sydney and Melbourne and I will be in Australia again this May 2014, including Brisbane at The School. A lovely gal by the name of Galina in Sydney attended my class and posted about it on her blog, Galina Loves. You can read and see her gorgeous photos on her blog post here. On my only day off in Sydney, I spent the most wonderful day with Jessie James of Supply Paper Co.  She took me to all of her favorite places, including Sibella Court’s  The Society Inc.  By pure coincidence,  I  ran into Jordan Ferney of Oh Happy Day and her husband Paul while they were in Australia!!! Maybe you remember, last January I taught a workshop at Oh Happy Day, sponsored by Bing. You can read Jordan’s post about her dream trip to Australia and New Zealand here.

In November, I was invited to teach a workshop in Portland at Schoolhouse Electric in collaboration with Egg Press along with Ana Mara Flowers at their wonderful warehouse. One of the attendees Lindsey Boccia took some great photos and shared it on her blog. It was an amazing day in a beautiful city and I cannot wait to return to Portland. In December, I taught a workshop at Makeshift Society with all proceeds to benefit the Red Cross Philippines Typhooon Haiyan. It was a workshop followed by silent auction and we raised over $3,000.

I took a break over the holidays with a trip to NYC and Boston with my family. January rolled around and I made a list of dream places that I would like to hold workshops. First stop on my list Los Angeles to one of my favorite places for workshops at  Poketo. I’ll be back in July 2014 along with an advanced workshop!

February was our first every “Petals and Penmanship” in collaboration with my friend Kiana Underwood of Tulipina . The workshop was held at Angie Cao’s photography studio in San Francisco. I shall share more about thatlater, for now here is a recap from Dressed in Orange. Kiana and I are planning  another workshop soon, more details later.

March (next week!) I am off to Tokyo to teach four workshops at Fog Linen and then Singapore with one of my favorite blogs ever Bloesem and her new venture:  Bloesem Class.  I promise I will be try to update this blog more often than I have been, but I need to know: Does anyone read this blog? What would you like to know more about?  In the meantime, you can see what I am doing every day on my mini-blog:  (my instagram feed)  and you will get to see snippets of  my journey to Asia.

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a lovely workshop-preview

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Hello there everyone, I hope you have been well. I know that I have been missing in action. It has been a bit crazy in my studio lately preparing for my upcoming workshops at The School in Sydney and Melbourne. It really is happening and last week, Australia’s most popular design blog, The Design Files featured an interview with yours truly! I am so honored as they don’t normally feature non Aussie creatives. Since the article, The School added a few more classes due to overwhelming response! My etsy shop went bonkers too, with my Calligraphy workshop in a box was listed as an Etsy “popular item” so I have been busy filling orders!
My friend the amazing and talented Elizabeth Messina photographed me for the feature in my  studio and I LOVED how the photos turned out. She only shoots film. We drove to Los Angeles for a whole slew of successful workshops at Poketo and on the way back to the Bay area we stopped by her place to be photographed.

While I was at her house, I spied a very cute key holder with labels in her entryway. She asked me to wait a minute and then came back with a key holder for me! I was so excited and I labeled them with numbers when we got home. Earlier this year, she asked me to participate by teaching a calligraphy workshop at A Lovely Workshop, held at Sunstone Villa, in Santa Ynez a gorgeous place. It was such an honor and I will write a more complete post later. We ended up using the key holder as part of the check in for the attendees. Posted here is a photo of how it was styled, complete with an authentic ledger that I wrote the names of all the attendees, and then checked people in. Hanging with the correlating number were buttons with their names in calligraphy.

Mindy Weiss was a guest speaker at the workshop, and freaked out when she saw that I was actually checking names off with my calligraphy pen on the antique ledger. There was so much talent on the team that Elizabeth assembled. Mindy Rice designed of the flowers and styled most of the vignettes. Elizabeth Colling created the most amazing croque-en-bouche and taught a food styling class. Rachel Schwartz of Wiley Valentine and I collaborated on a lot of the the stationery, and she was my roommate (love her!). Jeni from Found Rentals provided a lot of the pieces, and Claire Pettibone came with her amazing gowns,( and was a student in my calligraphy class). There is a whole list  of super duper talented people  that I did not mention and I will post in greater detail later.  It was an unbelievable experience that I will never forget, and cannot wait to share with you!!! xoxo M

P.S. In the interim, you can see snippets on my instagram feed and should check out the hashtag #alovelyworkshop  and get lost in a world of Lovely.

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BELLOCQ: A Special place for Calligraphy + Tea

Bellocq rare tea collectionToday I wanted to share some of the highlights from my workshops in NYC, Greenpoint, Brooklyn to be more precise. The workshops took place on Thursday, July 25th, 2013 at Bellocq Tea Atelier. In January of this year, I made a list of “dream projects”. Teaching a workshop at Bellocq was one of them. I cannot think of anything lovelier than sipping tea and practicing calligraphy, can you?

As we all know, part of achieving your goals is putting yourself out there and making it happen, so I sent an e-mail to Heidi Johannsen Stewart.  I received a very nice e-mail back right away from Heidi who knew of my work from her days as a food editor and stylist at Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia. Somehow, she had an old postcard from ten years ago with my alphabet written on it and kept it displayed in her studio – I felt so honored!  I explained how I loved the  hand lettered the labels for their rare tea collection posted on Bellocq’s Instagram feed and it sparked this whole idea of a workshop. It was created by one of the owners, Michael Shannon. She thought the workshop at Bellocq was a great idea, and once we figured out a date, we announced it on Instagram. Many traveled to NYC for the day just to attend this special workshop with me, some as far as Miami as in the case of photographer Jeanette Polynice  of To Love Photographie who took  all the beautiful photographs that you see here.

All day long, I was overcome with so many emotions to experience such a surreal moment like this. The space is very romantic, every detail just so. Bellocq is housed in what used to be a pencil factory Michael decorated the atelier with a few branches of Poke weed, (how appropriate for the class as it was used by native Americans to make ink.) Heidi made delicious Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Le Hammeau-Poached Apricots (recipe here) and hors d’ oevres were created by the talented Karen of The Cocktail Party Chef.  My friend Jill Lauck made her special caramels  for each student, and at the end of each class, a refreshment of Bellocq Majorelle Mint tea, St.Germain liquor, club soda and fresh mint was served. There was no detail spared.

I felt a special connection with each and every student in the class and I am so grateful for the opportunity to meet and share my love of calligraphy in this special setting. The owners, Scott, Michael and Heidi were so gracious and  are some of the loveliest people that you will ever meet. Their atelier is a place to be inspired and explore ideas and the teas are magnificent!  I hope you will have a chance to enjoy some of their wonderful blends to drink while you practice your calligraphy. One of my favorites is No. 20 Kikuya. For those of you in NYC, they open their atelier to the public on the weekends for people wishing to taste their selection. I hope you will find it as beautiful and inspiring as I shall always remember. xoxo, M

personlized wooden ink well

Tea + Calligraphy at Bellocq

maybelle the calligrapher

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