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World Calligraphy Day

World Calligraphy Day 2017
Calligraphy has definitely gained a lot more popularity in recent years – and it’s very much deserved. Scroll through social media, and you’ll find thousands of beautifully addressed letters, handmade cards or motivational quotes. Whether it’s simply to improve your day to day handwriting or to produce incredible typography, penmenship has become a trend that people strive to improve in. It’s growing in popularity daily. So, it’s great to hear that the very first World Calligraphy Day is being held today, on the 16th August 2017. This day has been founded by Manuscript Pen Company, who’ve been at the forefront of the pen manufacturing industry since 1856.

“We are thrilled to be making this announcement as the founders of this very special day. Calligraphy and hand lettering are at the heart of what we do here at Manuscript. In recent years, the art of beautiful writing has taken to new heights with the trends of Modern Calligraphy, Faux Calligraphy and Hand Lettering. These new trends have really taken off, encouraging everybody to try their hand at a whole variety of wonderful creative ventures.” Charles Stockbridge, Managing Director of Manuscript Pen Company Ltd.

Get involved

I’m a total beginner when it comes to calligraphy. I would love to be better at it.  However, a lack of practice thus far in life has prevented this from happening. My plan is to practice today so I can hopefully pick up a trick or two. There’s plenty of ways for you to get involved too and give it a go! Whether you’re a beginner or a world renowned calligrapher, there’s always a way to get involved.

If you’re based near Birmingham, there’s a fantastic event happening at the Pen Museum, hosted by Manuscript Pen Company who have brought together several amazing artists. It looks like it will be a great day full of free workshops.  So head on over – you could also get the kids involved too! Great activity for those on their school holidays.

Fear not if you can’t make it to Birmingham or find a local event. You can follow the hashtag #WorldCalligraphyDay and #ManuscriptWCD on social media to see what people get up to and share your own creations. I noticed a few sales this morning too, so be sure to check it out if you want to grab a bargain.

Do it at home!

I recently tried a few of the Manuscript products and found that they were quite easy to use for beginners. I’m not great at it yet but it’s definitely something I enjoyed creating. You can pick up the Beginners Calligraphy Set on their website today!  I used two of the nibs available in that kit in the photo below.

Manuscript Beginners Set
The Manuscript Pen Company have also kindly provided a practice template.  So you can print it off at home and still get involved. You can download this by clicking the image below.

Click to download WCD Template
Visit the Manuscript Pen Company to find out more. I’ll also be attending the event at the Pen Museum day so come say hi if you’re around! See you soon!

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Valentine’s Day Stationery: Miscellaneous

Welcome to the third and final part of the Valentine’s Day Series.  If you haven’t found a present yet, well… time is definitely running out!  But don’t fear – for Reema is here!  Wow, that was pretty cheesy, wasn’t it?  Moving swiftly on, there’s only a few days till Valentine’s so this last post will contain a whole bunch of ideas that I’ve titled as “miscellaneous” stationery as they don’t quite fall under any one category.  There’s still plenty of time to do these ideas because even if you do a “simple” version of them, they could still be really thoughtful and sweet.  So without further ado, let’s jump right into the first one.

Continue reading “Valentine’s Day Stationery: Miscellaneous”

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Valentine’s Day Stationery: Memory Books & Journals

The second part to the Valentine’s Day Stationery Series is a little bit more time consuming or creative than the first but the results are so worth it.  You don’t have to create a beautiful scrapbook, like the photograph below.  Honestly, it doesn’t need to be a work of art and I will list some easier ways to achieve the same effect but it gives you the option to be as creative as you’d like with this!

Photo Credit: Paperchase.

Instead of scrapbooking, let’s focus on memory books or journalling.  I really love these sorts of books.  One of the best presents I got from my friends was back in school.  They all got together to create a book for me, writing messages and adding photos in it.  Everytime I look through it, I recall all of the amazing moments and memories with them from school – some of them are things that had happened when we first met and I had forgotten all about them by this point!

For example, one friend wrote about a time that we were messing around and she was trying to push me into a spider web so I was resisting (as I hated spiders and it was also just gross!).  However, her purse fell on the ground whilst we were wrestling and a boy tried to run off with it.  I immediately stopped wrestling her and stopped the kid.  It was a natural reaction – one that I didn’t think anything of.  But she wrote that it was that moment that she knew I was a good friend – one that would defend her friends and fight for them, even if they were trying to do something, by her own admission, kind of mean (like push me into a web).  That moment impacted her in a way I never knew about until I read what she wrote on this book, years after the event.  Sometimes, you never realise who you’ve impacted or how you’ve had affected them – and sometimes the ones that have left lasting marks on you will never realise either, unless you tell them.

Continue reading “Valentine’s Day Stationery: Memory Books & Journals”

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Share Handmade Kindness – ft. Honey Bee Stamps

Share Handmade Kindness badgeThe Share Handmade Kindness challenge is an amazing initiative created by the lovely Jennifer Mcguire.  It’s a challenge that has been set up for the month of November that does what it says on the tin – challenge you to share handmade things out of kindness.  This could be anything from writing letters to baking cakes and as long as it’s handmade, it’s allowed.  The month has been split into 4 weeks, each with a different challenge and this week’s challenge was to share kindness with family and friends.  I wanted to do a quick post to introduce you to the challenge, if you haven’t heard of it already and share my support of it as I will definitely be playing along with it.  My week one creation features some notecards that I have made with a very cute stamp set by Honey Bee Stamps, which I’m very excited to be playing around with today.  Continue reading “Share Handmade Kindness – ft. Honey Bee Stamps”

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October Favourites – Stamps

I can’t believe that it’s November already, it really just feels like the other day when I was writing about my September obsessions!  Nonetheless, it’s the end of the month and I thought it might be nice to share some of my favourites again.  Last time I spoke about some things that I loved doing – activities like writing letters or watercolouring.  It was 5 broad topics that I picked last month so I thought I would do something different this month and instead focus on my favourites in one theme!

This month I have really loved stamping so I thought I’d share my top products in this area.  I use the stamps in a variety of ways – from creating greeting cards or letters to decorating my planner.  My focus was trying to use one set of stamps in different ways to get the most out of them.  I also purchased a few new products this month, which I’m really enjoying.

Mama Elephant – Pandamonium

Mama Elephant - Pandamonium ZombiesMama Elephant Pandamonium stampsI’ve owned this set for a while now and really enjoyed using it for different occasions.  It’s one you can use to send cards to those you love, especially with all of the cute lovey dovey sentiments but you can also use it for New Year’s or Christmas.  I went one step further with it this month to see if I could do anything else with it and from that came a bunch of fun Halloween goodness!  I shared a picture of these in my Halloween Planner spread last week but I absolutely love how flexible these stamps are.  It was so easy to turn these cute pandas into zombies.  I think this is definitely one set you’ll see featured a lot more in my upcoming crafts as I have fallen head over heels with it all over again.

Mama Elephant - Pandamonium lettersI think what I’ll love most about this particular set is that it contains the same animal but in many different poses and angles.  This gives you the opportunity to create a whole scene of pandas or to use the one that fits your needs best.  Very often, I wish that there were a few more angles of a stamp and this set provides for all of your needs.  I really enjoyed creating the monsters from it and then the next day, using them as they are to add a simple design to an letter set.


Docrafts – Forever Friends (Classic Decadence)

Docrafts Forever Friends stampsThe Forever Friends Classic Decadence stamp set is quite new to me and yet, I’ve already played around with it more than some of my other stamp sets.  Like the Pandamonium set, this too can be used for so many occasions.  There are many different angles and sizes of these teddies but this time, each is carrying a different item.  Birthdays, celebrations, thinking of you… whatever the occasion, you’ll probably be able to find a use for this set.  There are the obvious ideas – such as the teddy with a cupcake could easily go for a Birthday card or the one with the champagne glass works for a congratulations or graduation card.  But there are other ideas you could easily do from this set too…  For example, you could even use the teddy at the bottom right to put the star above him on a Christmas Tree.

This month, I decided to make some simple cards and letter sets using these stamps.  I wanted to try making something simple and so, I stuck to just using the stamps with some colouring, die cutting or washi tape.  These are really easy to replicate – and mass produce, if you wanted to do that.  Here are some examples of things that I made with the Forever Friends set recently…

Forever Friends Examples

The Greeting Farm – Do Si Do Anya

The Greeting FarmThe Greeting Farm stamps are ridiculously cute.  They also have digital stamps available for download, if you prefer to print your stamps (or want to use them for digital crafts).  Unfortunately, I don’t have a working printer so can’t play around with those at this moment but I do love their rubber stamps.  This Do Si Do Anya is super cute. Their characters are simple but cute and you’re bound to find ones that you love.  This Anya can easily be used for any occasion – just add the sentiment you want. use a different background scene or combine with other stamps to create the card for your occasion.

The Greeting Farm - Do Si Do AnyaHave I mentioned that these stamps are also incredibly fun to watercolour?  It is so relaxing painting these on the sofa, whilst watching some TV or hanging out with the family.  I love stamps that fill most of the card and therefore don’t require so much concentration to colour or create!

These three stamps are the ones that I have really been loving this month.  There are others that I have used throughout the month but these three stamp sets have really stood out for me and I have enjoyed using them in different ways.  I think these favourites are the ones that I reached out for most in the month and will definitely continue to do so into the next!

If you are interested in keeping up to date with crafts that I create, check out my instagram account here.


If you’re interested in purchasing or seeing these stamps in more detail, be sure to check out the company’s website!  The products that I have mentioned are…

Be sure to check out their website for more information about the individual stamp sets!

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It’s almost Halloween!

Halloween Spread (2)When I was a kid, my neighbours and I would dress up and go around the neighbourhood trick-or-treating.  Halloween has never been really big in the UK but we always loved to celebrate it.  For whatever reason, it seems to have died down now and I rarely see anyone celebrate it here.  But it’s a great holiday that I remember loving when I was younger so I thought it was worth talking about.  For those who don’t know, it’s coming up this Saturday so I thought I’d dedicate a quick post to it today – as next week’s post is probably way too late!  Hopefully something will inspire you to celebrate Halloween in your own little way, whichever country you’re in!  So here’s to Halloween, let’s make it a scary one (or perhaps one filled with lots of candy and cuteness). Continue reading “It’s almost Halloween!”

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World Mental Health Day 2015 ft. 5 ways to look after your mind

5 ways to look after your mindHello!  Today is a very important day, in my opinion because today is World Mental Health Day.  Every year on this day, people all over the world join together to talk about mental health and to raise more awareness of ill health.  I wish we didn’t need this day, to be quite honest.  I wish there was no stigma around this topic, that people opened up and spoke about it and that there was enough awareness to get support whenever you need it.  However, sadly, there is still a lot of negativity and judgement when someone mentions the words ‘mental illness’.  So today I wanted to dedicate a quick post to to this day and how it relates to my life, in particular why I love crafting and planners so much.

Continue reading “World Mental Health Day 2015 ft. 5 ways to look after your mind”

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September Favourites / Obsessions

I thought I would do something different today and dedicate this week’s post to talk about the things that have happened in September – and more specifically, things that I have become obsessed with over the month.  A number of these will end up on my blog with a proper review, no doubt but for now, I just wanted to give you an overview of my life and my current loves – and perhaps a glimpse of things coming up. So without much further ado, here are my five favourite things to do / use this month, in no particular order!

1. Planners.

Sept Obsessions - PlannersI have always loved planning and lists but I’ve always made done with a couple of planners that I just put everything in. Back in July, I spoke about the planners that I was using (and had been doing so for a while).  However, recently my love has become a little bit of an obsession!  So I have ordered a number of new planners and soon will start setting those up, getting them ready for 2016.  It may seem bizarre to have more than one planner but (if all goes to plan) I want to have a number of different ones for different purposes and I will aim to try and use all of them regularly in 2016.  I won’t give away too much but this weekend, I have been working on setting up my main 2016 planner (the Happy Planner pictured), a pocket sized traveller’s notebook to carry around with me, a Christmas Planner and my blogger’s planner.  There are a few more in the mix too (it really is an obsession)!  But as they say, planners got to plan!  If you are interested in seeing reviews of the different planners (which range from everything from Filofax to Hobonichi) or planner set ups for any of them then please let me know!

2. Washi Tape.

Sept Obsessions - Washi TapeAlright, who doesn’t love Washi Tape?  They come in so many great colours and patterns, with tons of uses!  Once you discover it, it is hard to go back to regular cellotape!  Recently, I have been buying lots of this stuff as I realised my collection was severely lacking.  I may have too much tape by now but it’s definitely still growing!  I particularly love adding washi tape to decorate envelopes for the letters I have been writing (this is coming up next!) but I also use it in my planner, for example.  There are tons of places to get washi tape – whether in store or online – and they come in a huge variety of colours so I’ve been picking up some whenever I’ve been shopping somewhere recently!


3. Snail Mail.

Sept Obsessions - Snail MailSnail Mail, Happy Mail, Letters… whatever the name, I absolutely love this old school form of communication.  These days, it’s rare to get something nice in the post.  So I decided to start doing something I love doing – sending out letters and cards again.  I do love technology and I’m thrilled Social Media exists but the joy of getting a handwritten letter is hard to beat these days.  Earlier this year, I sent some friends a handmade ‘Good Luck with your exams’ cards as they were sitting their final exams of their six year degrees and were incredibly stressed.  It made them so happy that I still hear about it today and I love that my little cards helped make them smile and relax a bit in such a stressful time.  So inspired by that, I have gotten some penpals and will be sending out more and more letters, as well as cards randomly.  And with Christmas coming up soon, it is definitely a good time to start now!

4. Watercolouring.

Sept Obsessions - WatercolouringI have recently picked up my Winsor & Newton Cotman watercolours again, alongside my Tim Holtz Distress Markers (that you can watercolour!).  And instantly I remembered why I love watercolouring.  I love the joy of making simple cards with a bit of watercolouring and have now started to extend it to experiment with these paints on my planners and letter writing paper.  And let’s be fair, most of the paper I own doesn’t do well with water but it is still really fun trying it out anyway!  For watercolouring cards, I tend to use my Daler Rowney Aquafine watercolour paper pad and love using stamps to create simple but fun cards.  I feel like I need more stamps though and that cannot be healthy for my bank balance…  Currently resisting as the other obsessions have mostly filled my bank statements with purchases.

5. Photo-a-Day.

Sept Obsessions - Photo-A-DayThis is by far the most random, given the rest are all stationery and crafts related.  However, I set myself the challenge of taking a photo a day to summarise my day simply because I wanted to.  I had no expectations from it nor rules to follow, allowing myself the freedom to do whatever I wanted to.  Mostly, I thought I would just take a picture every day and write a short description to accompany each photo.  It normally does not take too long but I like the idea of being able to go back through my photos and see what I was up to several months ago.  And it does not have to be a good photo or a happy photo but rather, just a photo of something that means something to me.  I upload these photos onto my personal Instagram account and am thrilled to say that September saw me crossing the one year mark of this challenge!  I have now taken a daily photo for over 365 days and I’m thrilled it is still going as I never expected it to last.  Annoyingly, my phone did not save all of the photos in the ‘Instagram’ folder like it normally does so I don’t have easy access to them all but I will definitely be finding the photos in my gallery, printing them off and attempting to make a book for them!  If anyone knows a good place that I can print off Instagram photos in the UK then please let me know!

So there you have it, my top five obsessions recently – which gives you an idea what might come up as blog posts soon.  These things will definitely be featuring on my Instagram account (@AumsomeBlog) so if you want first glance at what I’m up to then that would be the best place to follow me.  If you have any questions or requests then please get in touch, I’d love to hear from you!  Thank you for reading!