My Favorite Hand Lettering Tools and Resources

I’m a firm believer that what works for one person, it’s NOT always right for the next, but I also love sharing what has worked for me along my journey! Over the past two years, my process for hand lettering has changed quite a bit, and I’m excited to share my favorite hand lettering tools and resources with you! I hope this post helps you try a new a tool or approach to creating!

Handlettering Tools and Resources for Beginners

First up are my traditional tools – things I keep on hand, and recommend having in your back pocket.


Honestly, I work with what I’ve got – HOWEVER, a few of my favorites include Micron and Tombow. I buy my pens in black since I do color work in Adobe Creative Cloud, but if I see a pen that looks interesting, I buy it and play around with what sort of shapes and lines it creates.


I’ll use pretty much anything that’s laying around, but a fun fact is that I don’t typically like drawing in bound sketchbooks – I like being able to tear a piece out, and recycle it once I’ve documented/scanned it (especially if it’s a reject). I keep any sacred pieces that are special, but I’ve been using some form of the Konmari Method for paperwork for most of my life. When I want to ink something, I usually grab a pad of Bristol paper.


Again, nothing fancy here – I love blackwing pencils because I feel FANCY AF but I’ll use a good old mechanical that’s laying around. I really like using my Draft/Matic pencil, less waste, and it’s really reliable! I use a really hard lead so that my lines are lighter and easier to erase. Magic Rub is my all time favorite eraser. Reading this back… Magic Rub is quite a name!


I love my lightbox! It’s super lightweight and makes for really easy transfers and tracing. To be clear – I’m tracing my OWN work, not someone else’s. I trace over the sketch to refine it using a lightbox (over and over) if I’m working on a finished piece with ink. The one I have isn’t available anymore, but the one linked here is a good alternative!


I purchased an Epson Workforce printer when I was printing my line of stationery at home, it’s been reliable, customer services has replaced or been available to troubleshoot as needed, and all around I’m happy with it.


I was skeptical about the iPad at first – seeing how people used the brushes, and thinking it would take away from the handmade quality – but this really surpassed my expectations, and sped up my workflow immensely. I love playing with procreate brushes so much, that I made a few of my own you can purchase here. I also have a wacom tablet, which isn’t seeing much use these days, but I do love it. It’s a smaller investment for this particular model, but you can do so many incredible things with a cintiq too! These aren’t required or necessary for success, but they definitely have made my life easier! I think this is obvious, but I also heavily rely on my computer – formatting files, prepping things for print, and some of my process isn’t possible without the use of one – along with the Creative Cloud apps.


I used to print, cut, score and pack each one of my cards. It was a ton of work, lots of time (and papercuts) but saved me a lot of money when I was starting. My favorite tools are a paper cutter, a scoring board, a bone folder, and an x-acto knife.


I went to school for Graphic Design, so navigating my way through Illustrator and Photoshop was a skillset I already had, but I’m always learning new things about the programs, and new ways of doing things. I love taking classes on skillshare to try new methods, learn new approaches, and get inspired by other artists. I teach a class about using the pen tool here, and there are tons of other classes you can take to learn more!

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Represented by Jennifer Vaughn Artist Agency. For commercial work please contact Jen Vaughn at jen@jenvaughnart.com or 760-808-2462