Popular Calligraphy Styles

We have been collaborating with professional Calligrapher Angela Reed over the past few months to help customers learn more about the traditional handwriting art of Calligraphy. The latest guest post from Angela talks us through the different Calligraphy styles.

There are many forms of calligraphy out there and it can be daunting for beginners. But don’t feel you have to master everything! I tend to dabble in more traditional styles, with Copperplate being my favourite.

Calligraphy Style: Foundational

Calligraphy Style: Foundational

The first script I introduce people to when they come along to my workshops is foundational hand, which is quite rounded and widely spaced. Developed at the beginning of the 20th century by Edward Johnston, it is based on the circle and vertical straight line. I usually pair its lower case alphabet with Roman capitals, a script based on the lettering from the stone inscriptions of Ancient Rome.

Calligraphy Style: Roman Capitals

Calligraphy Style: Roman Capitals

Uncial is also a good hand for beginners to get to grips with. Like the foundational, it has roundness to it and round shapes are easier to form. The script itself is traditionally a formal book hand used from the 4th to 8th centuries, but there are many variations.

Calligraphy Style: Uncial

Calligraphy Style: Uncial

Italic was developed during the Renaissance in Italy in the 15th and 16th centuries, hence its name, and was used for papal documents. It is flowing and rhythmical, with springing arches, a forward slope, compressed forms and relatively steep pen angle. Italic capitals are narrower than Roman capitals, based on an oval rather than a circle, and are often elegantly flourished.

Calligraphy Style: Italic

Calligraphy Style: Italic

Copperplate, or English round hand, was prevalent in the 19th century. It is written with a pointed nib, rather than a broad-edged one, with the thickness of the stroke determined by the pressure applied when writing. It is a sound basis for anyone wanting to go on to explore modern calligraphy, which is less rigid than more traditional styles.

Calligraphy Style: Copperplate

Calligraphy Style: Copperplate

The best thing to do is try a few styles and see which one suits you. Eventually, you’ll end up developing your own variation of a style, just like handwriting!

We have been collaborating very closely with Angela over the past few months, you may recall her Question and Answer session where we took the opportunity to learn more about Angela and her passion for Calligraphy. In another guest post, Angela explored the different Calligraphy Pens and Sets we offer. In her last blog Angela looked at How to get started in Calligraphy.

If you want to learn more about Angela and the services she can provide then head over to her website at Creative Calligraphy and socially you can connect with Angela on Twitter or Facebook. If you are inspired by Angela’s story and you too want to get started with Calligraphy then we have a curated selection of pens to help you.

The Pen that destroyed an AK-47, from Cross


This Cross special-edition rollerball pen supports Fonderie 47’s efforts to help stop gun violence in war-torn regions of Africa by removing assault rifles from circulation. The design is inspired by the AK47 itself. Each pen features black PVD plating with 23KT gold-plated appointments, a moniker disk of transformed steel from an AK47 destroyed in Africa, and the unique serial number of a gun destroyed to create it. Your purchase funds the destruction of one more AK47. Carry, use, and display it as a symbol of hope and change.

In the last 20 years, ongoing wars on the African continent have resulted in the loss of millions of lives. This conflict has largely been enabled due to widespread availability of assault rifles. Cross has partnered with Fonderie 47 to help make a difference by reducing the supply of assault rifles in these war-struck areas.


Fonderie 47 envision an Africa free from the fear of assault rifles. Today, millions of assault rifles plague Africa. Responsible for countless deaths, they enable and exacerbate violence against women and children, cause mis-allocation of resources and prevent economic growth. Global and local leadership must be fostered and inspired to address the presence and use of these weapons.


While traveling on business in Africa, social entrepreneur and Fonderie 47 creator Peter Thum saw firsthand the effects of this war and witnessed a world where it was normal for children to carry guns. This inspired him to take action. His purpose: to get significant numbers of guns out of circulation in Africa and to engage influences around the world to join him. Many said it could not be done.


In 2009, Peter founded Fonderie 47, a company dedicated to transforming AK47s into beautiful and exclusive luxury objects. To date, Fonderie 47 has helped to destroy over 50,000 assault rifles in Africa.

The first step to creating beautiful objects to fund the cause was to procure the AK47 guns. The Fonderie 47 team spent a year and a half in the Kivu province of Africa negotiating to take legal possession of confiscated assault weapons. After encountering barrier after barrier, their perseverance finally paid off.


The next step was to find a local blacksmith to melt the AK47s down into smaller pieces. Once these guns had been destroyed the team carried the pieces back to New York in their luggage.


Back in Brooklyn, they built a forge and had a local blacksmith reconstitute them. From there, a micro-foundry rolled the steel into sheets that could be transformed into signature Fonderie 47 pieces.

The craftsmen at Cross used this blackened AK47 gunmetal to create the fine detail work in the cap inset of the Peerless Fonderie pens.



  • For every pen purchased, one gun is taken off the streets of Africa
  • Pen body featuring unique design cues taken from an AK 47
  • Each pen is engraved with a unique serial number from an AK 47
  • Gunmetal PVD with 23 Ct gold plated appointments
  • Width: 0.52 inches / 13.2 mm, Length: 6.16 inches / 156 mm, Weight: 1.5 oz / 43 grams
  • Comes with a single black refill
  • Luxury Gift Box with a Fonderie 47 themed sleeve and authenticity card
  • Lifetime Mechanical Guarantee

View the Fonderie range >