Published December 9, 2009

How to Make Money from a Home Calligraphy Business

People with a creative, steady hand can use that talent to make a part-time income from a home calligraphy business. Do you have creative and artistic lettering skills? Do you have self-promotional know-how? Then why not start your own home calligraphy business part-time in your own home?

A home calligraphy business is easy. You simply apply beautiful and styled hand lettering to products that will sell to customers. You can create a catalog of basic items to sell, such as framed poems and greeting cards. However, one of the ways that calligraphers make great part-time money is by creating custom products such as:

  • Personalized greeting cards
  • Wedding invitations
  • Certificates
  • Menus

Skills Required: Basic artistic skills and familiarity with calligraphy techniques.

Almost anyone with a steady hand and decent penmanship can be successful at starting a home calligraphy business. Calligraphy lettering does require learning and practice to make the final product into a beautiful design. However, you don't need a university art degree.

Start by taking a community college course on calligraphy, or purchase calligraphy instructions books from your local bookstore. You will also need a basic set of calligraphy pens and pen tips, and ink. The key to becoming a successful part-time home calligraphy business is making consistently good lettering without mistakes. It may require a little practice, but you can become proficient in calligraphy in no time.

Startup Expenses: $100 -$1,000

Your basic startup expenses will include equipment, supplies, a website, and initial marketing costs including samples of your work. A home calligraphy business needs the basic tools to perform the work of calligraphy. A beginner's calligraphy set including pens, varying broad and narrow width pen tips, and ink can cost around $20 to $30. Specialized calligraphy sets may cost upwards of $100 to $200, but a beginner set is all you really need to get started.

You will need a supply of paper to begin as well. Stock up on parchment and calligraphy paper of varying sizes.

Books on calligraphy for your part-time business might run between $15 and $50. If you want to take a community course, expect to pay about $150 or more.

And don't forget business cards, a website, and other marketing materials to promote your business. Design your own web site, or hire a web designer. Create your own business cards as well to show off your talent.

Monthly Revenue: $200 - $2,000 per month

Your income depends on a number of things, including your skill level and the complexity of the job. The more skilled you are at making beautiful lettering and additional drawings, the more you can charge. Simple greeting cards and envelopes may be $3 to $5 each. More detailed work such as framed poems might be $50 to $100. You could even charge per hour. Most established home calligraphy businesses charge around $50 to $100 per hour.

Monthly Expenses: $0 - $500

A home calligraphy business has virtually no overhead. All costs of your products are transferred to the customer, including paper, framing, packaging, etc. You will need to pay for basic supplies such as ink or even new instruction books and courses occasionally; however, once you recover your startup costs, almost everything you earn is profit.