bridal series: learn calligraphy! [closed]

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Happy Friday! I’m super excited to (finally) introduce a new bridal series on City Tonic! Over the next few months, I’ll be posting some wedding-related features as I plan my big day (and sharing any tips I learn in the process). Hopefully the series will be fun to read – whether you’re planning your own wedding, or just occasionally indulging in some wedding daydreaming via Pinterest (we’ve all been there).

Okay, to kick things off, today’s post is all about calligraphy! As soon as we decided on our wedding date (and knew we’d be fast-tracking the planning), I started designing our Save the Date cards since we’re inviting lots of out-of-town/international guests. I’m a bit of a DIY addict, so I thought I’d attempt to address my envelopes rather than hire a pro calligrapher. I’ve always admired beautiful hand-lettering and “modern” style calligraphy, but the task of actually learning how to do it felt pretty daunting. Then I found out about the insanely talented Ashley Lurcott and The Lettered Bride. The Lettered Bride offers a DIY calligraphy kit that sets you up to learn the technique without any of the guesswork. The calligraphy kits available at big art stores teach the old-fashioned, more traditional calligraphy style — but Ashley’s DIY kit comes with instructions for the playful and trendy calligraphy style you’ve probably seen all over Pinterest. The Lettered Bride’s guide booklet introduces the art of calligraphy in steps that are clear and digestible; the hand-drawn examples help you visualize how the direction and pressure of your strokes will end up forming those pretty little letters and swashes. Plus, the kit comes with the best pens and inks to get you started and tons of practice sheets on which you can perfect your lettering skills.

I actually ended up becoming obsessed with calligraphy, once I got past the first few unsuccessful (and hideous) attempts. It’s extremely relaxing and can deliver some really impressive results. Plus, the ink options are endless. Obviously I had to buy all the neons immediately. It was a little bittersweet dropping my Save the Dates at the post office after all the quality time I’d spent with them, but now I’m super excited to start designing my invitations and addressing the envelopes all over again. (I’m a crazy person.)

Feeling inspired? Ashley has generously offered to gift a DIY kit to one lucky reader! Even if you aren’t planning to address a massive amount of envelopes, calligraphy is an awesome skill to learn. So, enter now and cross your fingers!

The contest winner is Caryn Just – congrats!

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win nutcracker tickets! [closed]

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The winner is Elizabeth Hausmann – congratulations!

A week ago, I was lucky enough to be invited to the Boston Ballet’s magical performance of The Nutcracker (check me out backstage here!). When I was little, my mom and I would go see the Nutcracker every year before Christmas – and just hearing the music brings back such happy memories. In 2012, the costumes and set were redesigned, so I was definitely excited to see the changes (especially when I heard over 200,000 jewels were hand sewn onto the dancers’ costumes…). And the show was seriously beautiful – so sparkly and inspiring. My boyfriend Kevin even enjoyed it – we were both so impressed by the unbelievable talent and athleticism of the dancers (insane). Thanks to the generosity of the Boston Ballet, I’m hosting a giveaway for two Nutcracker tickets! The show is at the Boston Opera House on Thursday, December 18th, 7:30pm (just a few days away!) and I’ll be contacting the winner on Wednesday. Don’t miss out on this amazing experience – enter below!

[contesthopper contest=”11230″]

{image courtesy of the Boston Ballet}

wye road giveaway!

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After a cold and SNOWY weekend, I’m glad I at least have some good news to announce: today’s the start of the Wye Road jewelry giveaway that I’m co-hosting with some of my blogger friends! Enter below to win “the Gracie” – a beautiful, delicate gold necklace handmade in NYC by designer Sam Witt. (Contest hosted by: Mass MusingsCity TonicCuppajyoLoSo FancyStyle Tab)

Contest ends November 12th and is open to U.S. residents only. Good luck!

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