How to Make a Calligraphy Pen

Hey! Glad you could make it! This page is a collection of ways I have found to make a calligraphy pen out of relatively common household objects. These tools give an opportunity for anyone who wants learn calligraphy to practice without having to make an online purchase of professional grade tools. I have many other posts that you can start learning calligraphy with just a highlighter, pencils, crayola marker or learning lettering with a Sharpie. But if you are in a crafty mood, and want to make the closest thing to a Pilot Parallel or Ruling pen as you can, keep on reading!

How to Make a Blackletter Pen Tutorial(s)

You may be wondering what does Blackletter Calligraphy look like? It looks a little like this:

Cola Can Method (Video to Follow Along)

Step by Step Instructions:

Gather These Required Materials:

  • Cola can
  • Metal cutter (scissors will work but cutting metal probably will dull them)
  • Needle or pin
  • Wood or some form of handle you can make a notch into
  • Tape or some kind of adhesive
  • Saw or some kind of Wood cutter/slot maker
  • Ruler/marker
  • Sandpaper (200 grit or higher)
  • Ink to write with

Then Construct Like This:

  1. The Cola Can will be the tip of your pen, as the aluminum is a great flexible material for the nib. You’ll want to first cut off the top and bottom of your can.
  2. Using your ruler, marker and metal cutter, measure and cut out a few 1.5cm by 6cm rectangles. Fold one of the rectangles in half lengthwise to make a crease and unfold it. Next, fold the edges in half width-wise, bringing the edges up to the crease. Then fold the You should have something that looks like…
  3. Next, grab your pin/needle and tap 5-6 holes into the crease on the inside of your fold.
  4. Take your sandpaper and CAREFULLY sand off the extra aluminum that was pushed out when making the holes in the previous step. It is very common that in this step that your metal can snap along the edge or your holes will become too large and connect.  Your edge should be smooth to the touch.
  5. Placing your new nib aside, grab your wooden doweling and make a slot in it the width of your saw. This will Be freaking careful when using the saw please, you won’t be making too much calligraphy if you are missing a hand or finger.
  6. With this new slot take your nib and insert it. Secure it with your tape or adhesive.

Now that you are done your pen, try out some of our free blackletter practice sheets here.

How to Make a Ruling Pen Tutorial

 

 

Video to Follow Along:

Step by Step Instructions:

Gather these Required Materials:

  • Cola can
  • Old scissors (or some sort of metal cutter)
  • Marker
  • Pencil (or some sort of sturdy stick)
  • Tape (or some adhesive)

Then Construct like this:

  1. Cut off top and bottom of the can with your metal cutters. Mark a shape similar to the shape below on it with your marker.
  2. Cut out said shape and fold it around the pencil or stick and tape it into place
  3. Pinch edges around the pencil until there is a small gap near the tip at rest
  4. Cut a round smooth edge from the back of the rectangle to the tip, while ensuring the small gap is maintained.

Now that you are done with your new ruling pen. Grab some ink and try it out!