Prepping a nib is one of the first things you NEED to do. Not sure what a nib is? Go to my previous blog post!

Why do you need to prep a nib? This is a mistake most people make when starting calligraphy. There is a wax coating on a new nib that preserves it from rusting. This is amazing if you aren’t using your nib, but I’m sure you would like to eventually!

There are a few ways to prep you nib, which include but aren’t limited to using a lighter, a potato, and a glass of hot water. Yes, I said a potato! Personally, I use the method that has less of a risk to burn my fingers or where I to waste a perfectly good potato. I fill a small cup with hot, not scolding hot, water about two inches and place the new nib in the water. You just have to wait about five minutes. This will give you time to lay out all of your materials: paper, pen holder, ink, glass of water, and paper towel. After the five minutes or so, take the nib out of the water and dry it off with a piece of paper towel or cloth. Don’t rub it too hard because the nib is metal and is still pliable. You do NOT want to warp the nib at all, or it’ll pretty much be useless ):

After you prep the nib, make sure it never sets for a long amount of time with ink in the reservoir because it will speed up the rusting process. To clean your nib, you can dry it off with the paper towel and use water to clean it. For a more thorough clean, you can also use a little bit of windex! Please let me know if you have any questions in the comments section! Also, don’t forget to check out my preferred list of supplies. If you’ve already bought any of the supplies and not sure how to start, my personal formal calligraphy alphabet guide is available for download through my Etsy shop! It includes tools, tips, basic strokes, drills, two printables to hang, AND a full alphabet. I hope you enjoy it!



Calligraphy Tip | How I Prep a Nib