For Wordsmiths

For Wordsmiths

Good to know

When I see a problem to be solved I can't help myself but try to find a way to fix it. The problem I found with traditional oblique calligraphy pens was that they are hard to adjust to fit the plethora of different calligraphy nib sizes. So I designed mine to be easily and quickly adjustable, by using a clamping mechanism similar to a nut and bolt the pen allows you to simply change between nibs without having to resort to a pair of pliers for every time you like to make an adjustment! The brass nib holder can also be revolved, this is probably the feature calligraphers appreciate the most as it means you can customise the writing angle (again without the need for pliers) so that the pen adjusts to the angle you like to hold the pen rather than you having too adjust for it. There are also recommended angles to hold the pen for certain calligraphy styles and this means you can simply adjust the pen to suit. If you're a left handed calligrapher who writes overhand the nib holder can also be flipped over so that it sits right hand side of the pen, this feature allows you to write slanted style calligraphy without smearing all of your beautiful work!

This is a very common question and one that at Tom's Studio as it can make a big difference to the pen you decide to buy. Fortunately we have lovely designs for both straight calligraphy pens and oblique pen holders so whatever you decide you'll know you have the perfect tool for the job.

A straight calligraphy pen is a more simple design that holds a nib at a straight angle to the paper. This type of 'pen holder' (another name for a calligraphy pen) is well suited for upright scripts, such as Roman, Modern, and Gothic scripts, where the strokes are primarily vertical or horizontal. If you're a leftie with an underwriter grip you will most likely prefer a straight pen for slanted styles of calligraphy (below) as the angle you'll naturally hold the pen is suited to these.

An oblique pen holder, on the other hand, holds the nib at an angle, usually between 15 to 30 degrees, relative to the writing surface. This angle allows for more comfortable and efficient writing of scripts that have slanted strokes, such as Copperplate or Spencerian. In other words, you don't have to strain your wrist to achieve the perfect writing angle. The slant of the nib also helps to create variations in line thickness and is used to produce a more expressive and decorative style when writing on an angle. If you're a left-handed calligrapher who writes overhand, my oblique pen holders also work perfectly as the brass nib holder can be flipped so that it sits on the right hand side of the pen. This allows you to write at the correct angle for slanted-style calligraphy. Win!

I have designed my pens with versatility and flexibility in mind. Both the straight and the oblique pens are designed to fit all standard nib sizes.

The oblique pens are fitted with my unique universal flange design which holds almost every kind of nib (big and small) and allows you to adjust the angle of the nib, further increasing the 'glide factor' of your writing.

A Nikko G nib is a great place to start. You can find a selection of nibs avaialble here: calligraphy nibs


My straight nib holders are fitted with a ferrule. The nib is press fitted into the ferrule and to change your nib you can just pull the old one out and push in a replacement.


You can now park the pliers and say sayonara to screws. Instead all you need to do is twist the beautifully machined brass nut to the width of your nib and you'll be flourishing in a flash.

My unique design fits nibs as large as a Nikko G, all the way down to smaller nibs like the Brause 66EF, as well as our 3.5mm pencil lead, so you can draft your creations before committing to ink. The Flourish is designed with ultimate comfort and reliability in mind. It's a refined writing instrument built to last a lifetime.