Kirsten Burke

Modern Calligraphy & Hand Lettering

Pick up a pen and let's get creative!

Kirri Casali2 Comments
Learn to use different papers and inks, to create stunning results

Learn to use different papers and inks, to create stunning results

Here we are at the beginning of a new year, and it looks like lots of you have resolved to learn something new. Our workshops are filling up as fast as we organise them and we are delighted! Learning calligraphy really is so rewarding. Not only because you can turn words you love into your own pieces of art-work, to hang around your home. But also, because while you work you are completely focused. In this age of mindfulness, we all know what a benefit that is to our health. All the students at our workshops comment on how engrossed they become in their work. By concentrating on the shape of the letter form, making the pen work and remembering to spell the words they are writing correctly- worrying about anything else is impossible!

Be guided through using a dip pen, creating letterforms, using colour and adding flourishes.

Be guided through using a dip pen, creating letterforms, using colour and adding flourishes.

Deep concentration at the children's calligraphy workshop.

Deep concentration at the children's calligraphy workshop.

With Pinterest and Etsy now full of brush lettering and modern pointed pen calligraphy, there is no shortage of inspiration. These new, fresh calligraphy styles have given this ancient craft a new lease of life!

Showing off their stunning calligraphy in the kid's workshop.

Showing off their stunning calligraphy in the kid's workshop.

Teenagers at our teen workshops are totally at home with all the social media platforms, so they see this type of work all the time. They, far more than previous generations are also used to the 'positive quote', the 'life affirming phrase', and what a perfect partnership- words with hand lettering. Modern calligraphy skips all the geometry of letter-forms and skips to the good bit. With just a few hours, learning to work the pen and get to grips with some simple rules, we can all do a bit a calligraphic art. So come and give it a go.

Calligraphy Classes

Our workshops are gaining in popularity and so we are expanding what we offer, branching out into a follow-on class for those who have done classes and want to take their skills further; children's workshops, teen workshops; full and half day, a brush lettering workshop and we a trying a parent/child session, so you can learn together- twice the fun. And if you want to treat someone, we have vouchers too! As all the classes are filling up so fast, we have added more dates, a morning workshop on 6th April and an evening on on the 10th May.

I hope there is something there for you, but if you are too far from us why not buy a calligraphy starter kit? All the lessons from our workshops are in the kit, plus tips to help you get started. We have included templates that you can work over the top of, so that while you find your feet, you can create finished pieces easily. Soon it will be you posting pictures of your calligraphy on Instagram, I can't wait to see them!

Become totally absorbed in hand-lettering

Become totally absorbed in hand-lettering

Beginner Calligraphy Classes

What makes Calligraphy modern?

Kirri Casali2 Comments
Tines of a Dip Pen

Calligraphy is in the midst of a renaissance, partly due to the idea that there is no wrong or right way to write a letter. Historically calligraphy was rather inflexible, with established letterforms being copied precisely, with the aim to make every letter the same. It was all about getting the correct form. 

image from learncalligraphy.co.uk

Using dipping pens with a pointed nib instead of a broad edge nib, you can create curved hairlines, thick and thin strokes and elegant flourishes. Most of all you can find styles that suit you, and make it your own. So throw away that rule book! Now you can get results without years of study.

pointed pen calligraphy

A dip pen has tines, the two sections that end in a point. It has a reservoir- the gap where the tines join. The ink will sit in there when you dip into your ink. Fill your pen so that the reservoir is full. Aim to write a word or two with one dip.

Sit up straight, sit near the edge of your chair. Hold the pen with a relaxed grip. 

Calligraphy Tips

Hold the pen nib straight out in front of you, so the tines are able to open when you pull the pen downwards, to give you a thick line. 

Calligraphy Workshops

Allow your fore arm to glide over your desk, rather than leaning on it. You can move the angle of your forearm and hand, to make different strokes, but always keep the pen at the same angle. Move your arm from your elbow for short movements across the paper, and from the shoulder for long movements.

Modern Calligraphy

Think of calligraphy as painting, not writing. Concentrate on the shapes you are making and go slowly. Enjoy the ink travelling across the paper and you will find that you are creating beautiful calligraphy in no time! 

If you are in the South of England, why not come along to one of our workshops and enjoy learning more, and meeting fellow calligraphy enthusiasts? We have full day and half day courses, all are friendly and informal. All abilities welcome and all materials are provided. Click to view workshop dates.

Calligraphy Workshops

Kirri CasaliComment

Hooray! New dates have just been added for our calligraphy workshops. Our summer Introduction to modern Pointed Pen Calligraphy classes were such good fun & so popular that we have organised more for the Autumn. All of them will be held at our industrial 'cool' studio, tucked away in the leafy West Sussex countryside.

Due to refurbishing the Victorian Electricity Substation that doubles as our studios, we are able to hold classes whenever we want!!  We are so excited to be able to share our love of calligraphy with our students and meet fellow calligraphy enthusiasts. Receiving fantastic feedback from them is the icing on the cake. Below are a few of the kind notes we’ve received lately:

Thank you to Sue Endicott for this beautifully written note, in such LOVELY calligraphy.

Thank you to Sue Endicott for this beautifully written note, in such LOVELY calligraphy.

  • "I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed last Wednseday's workshop. It was wonderful to break free of the rules and use calligraphy in such a free way. I really appreciated all the preparation you did with such quality touches- even down to the coffee and cake. I hot footed it to Paperchase and have been busy experimenting. A joy!" SE
  • “Thank you so much for such a inspiring class! Not only are you so talented at calligraphy, but you are also excellent at teaching it! I loved every minute and didn't want to stop. I will be coming back for more.” – DB
  • “I had so much fun writing again, it's been so long since I did anything so creative and your quality teaching made it all so clear.” – TF
  • “A gorgeous place to learn and such a nice way to pass a morning. From the friendly guidance you gave to the delicious cakes, I thought your class was wonderful.” – LP
  • “I wanted to compliment you on your teaching. I really didn't think I would get anywhere near the results I did, and now I don't want to stop. I will be signing up for more as soon possible” – FG
  • “I SO enjoyed your class! My friend recommended you, I came with no preconceived ideas, and you blew me away. Thank you so much for helping me find a craft I really, really enjoy” – DM

There is nothing better than seeing our students complete our workshops eager to practice and grow as calligraphers! So many that attended asked to do a longer course, and that's why we have set the date for two full day workshops. All our former students will know how quickly the time goes when you are concentrating on your work, and having longer to really get to grips with mastering techniques and materials will be a real luxury. If you can't get to a class, but would love to try your hand at calligraphy, try our Calligraphy Starter kits. Inside are calligraphy tips, lessons and exercises, stationery to work on and all the materials you need to get yourself started as a calligrapher.

Calligraphy Starter Kit

Calligraphy Starter Kit

We hope that you will be able to join us for a workshop (or two!). As always, we’ll be keeping the class size small (maximum students is 12) to allow for plenty of individual attention and instruction. So, if you are interested in taking part this Autumn, please don’t wait too long to book your place. You can find more details here.

A place in one of our workshops is also the perfect birthday, anniversary or graduation gift too, so let us know if your place is for a friend. We will sit you together if you are both attending, and even prepare an extra special cake to celebrate.

Calligraphy is also the perfect hobby for teenagers and kids as they can create something cool, stylish and inspirational to frame on their wall. When we ran our kid's workshop they were so totally engrossed in their calligraphic designs for the whole of the class that we could barely prise them away for biscuits and cakes!

We add a little foiling and glitter for the younger ones, and are always amazed at the wonderful results at the end of every class. If you want to see for yourself, follow our facebook page. We post our students' work there and all the other projects we are working on as well.

Kids calligraphy workshop

Kids calligraphy workshop

An Inspiring Artist's Studio

Kirri CasaliComment

While I keep myself busy creating lettering, teaching, and working on projects for big name clients like Jo Malone, it’s in my studio that I find my creativity comes alive. This once unloved Victorian Substation has been transformed by my business partner Jill, into a space that has style, space and most importantly for any artist, great light. With it's vaulted ceilings, vintage finishes and steel accents it really is a great space to be in. Join us for a tour.

A studio space is so important, it helps keep all those creative ideas flowing! It influences my work, and the way that I approach making my art. By spliting the upstairs part of the studio in two, I am able to spread out and be painterly at one end, creating large expressive pieces; while all the digital tasks, like emails and editing artwork take place at the other end of the room, away from any paint splashes. I have a large, photographers light box that I use all the time too. Placing pieces of work on top of each other, I can work out layouts and lettering styles. The lightbox shines light from underneath so that I can trace, refining the work I've done, until I have a piece I am completely happy with.

Downstairs we now run all our calligraphy workshops. It works so well, as we have everything to hand, the students love the space, and they can really concerntrate as there are no interuptions. We had pieces hung on the walls following the Chichester art trail, so we left some of those up to inspire!

We count oursleves very lucky to have such a inspiring workspace, and if you have booked to come on one of our workshops, or are planning to visit us on next years Chicester Art Trail, we look forward to showing you around in person.

Art Trail Blazing!

Kirri CasaliComment

We have had such an amazing time being part of this years Chichester Art Trail. Thank you so much to everyone who has come and seen what we do. Even with the sun blazing, visitors still came. 

Most people visited because they'd seen Kirsten's artwork in the brochure, and they wanted to find out what her work was all about. Her calligraphy was not what they expected when they remembered practising their own lettering with their 'Osmiroid' calligraphy set at school! 

"When Kirsten works, everything comes together to make something so unique, it's like nothing that I have ever seen before.”
 

Kirsten’s pieces are visual interpretations of the words she has chosen, from formal to abstract art. Her colours choices, and the implements she uses are all selected to bring the meaning of the words to life! 

So many people had a go at our work table using dip pens, tracing over words and phrases, enjoying the way the ink flows and becoming utterly absorbed in what they were doing. The workshops that Kirsten runs filled up, so another date has been added. There are so many budding lettering artists out there! 

The calligraphy wasn’t the only thing being admired either. The Victorian substation that is Kirsten Burke HQ sits modestly tucked away, hiding her inner beauty. Bought as a shell, Jill has turned it into a stunning working space and gallery. 'Shed envy’ one visitor wrote in the book, but this really is no shed!

Although the workman only downed tools a day before the opening party for the Art Trail, the interior is immaculate. The utilitarian function of the building has been honoured, with exposed pipe work and industrial features, giving it a new life as a light, modern and funky work-space. 

We are certainly looking forward to doing the Art Trail again next year, so thank you to Malcolm who organises it all, and look out for those green balloons next year, same time, same place!

Letterer goes to London!

Kirri CasaliComment
Working at Jo Malone, Convent Garden London

Working at Jo Malone, Convent Garden London

As you may have seen from my facebook updates, I have been busy working in London for the last few weeks. It is such a contrast to my quiet counrty life,  being in Selfridges and Harrods, working for the wonderful brands Jo Malone and Tom Ford is such a buzz. I met such lovely people too. 

Jo Malone Mimosa and Cardamon, their new fragrance

Jo Malone Mimosa and Cardamon, their new fragrance

Personalised tiles ready to take away

Personalised tiles ready to take away

Jo Malone were promoting their new fragrance, Mimosa and Cardamon, and what a launch it was. They had champagne cocktails, chocolates, cute little biscuits that looked like ceramic tiles, canapés and wonderful talks about the inspiration for their scent, and how the Jo Malone team create their fragrances. Alongside all of this, were beautiful ceramic tiles with stunning patterns on one side, and on the reverse I was there to personalise the tilewith quotes, messages or poems that I wrote with ceramic paints onto the tiles. 

What a brilliant memento to take away with you. There were queues of people, all scrolling through Pinterest on their iPhones to find the perfect saying or phrase to adorn their tile. When they bought a product, the tile was spritzed with the new Mimosa and Cardamon scent, & the tile was boxed with tissue and ribbon. Even the gift tag on the bag was a mini tile. Just so lovely.

Working with a brush to create personalised messages

Working with a brush to create personalised messages

I worked with a brush, a metal nib wouldn't work on ceramic. It gives really pretty thick and thin strokes, like you can get from a calligraphy pen, but far more delicate. It was such fun and people were so chuffed with getting such treats. 
Calligraphy with a brush onto tiles

Calligraphy with a brush onto tiles

Tom Ford was far more low key, with traditional calligraphy, applied to Tom Ford envelopes and gift cards with purchases. A copperplate italic using black ink is a classic - perfect for this uber slick brand. 
Personalised envelopes and cards for Tom Ford

Personalised envelopes and cards for Tom Ford

Phew, I returned home to my family, revved up and ready to keep on top of which school form needs to be handed in, and when (well almost)! All filled in with a barely legible scrawl!
I'm sorry to say there isn't quite the time to do beautiful writing in every aspect of my life. 
Until next time x

HOW MY CANCER INSPIRED MY LATEST WORK

EmpathyKirri Casali5 Comments

I am really excited to be launching my new range of empathy cards, and they are particularly special to me as they were inspired by my own personal experience with cancer.

First diagnosed with breast cancer aged 30, I have fought the disease three times, the last time in 2015. I have been lucky enough that each time, the cancer hadn't spread further and with the help of chemo, radiotherapy and numerous operations, I am in remission now. I feel well, am back at work, enjoying life again and looking forward to watching my two daughters grow up. I have also been lucky enough to have friends who took over organising my life while I got through my treatments.

Each time I was battling the disease, I noticed that friends who were genuinely concerned and wanted to help, sometimes struggled to express their thoughts. As a result they often ended up saying nothing and seemed to disappear from my life.

As a greeting card designer for the last 18 years, I took inspiration from my own experiences and decided to fill the gap. There are already sympathy and get well cards, but nothing for empathy, to let someone know you’re there, but are not sure what to say..

I would have really appreciated an empathy card and it would have helped friends who were struggling to find the right words. An illness such as cancer affects not just the victim - there’s a ripple effect, with everyone else around the sufferer affected.  

kirsten burke

I hope you like the cards – they’re created with the hope that people following in my footsteps will find their path a little less lonely.

Developing a Greeting Card Range

greeting card designKirri Casali2 Comments

Having had a successful greeting card range kicking around since the 90's, you would think developing another to be its successor would be simple. The formula is there from FC2, my very first and by far, most successful range to date. It has calligraphy with no illustration- friendly and fun messages that are easy to buy! Apart from the colours, nothing much has changed with FC2. I still design the lettering by hand, sketch it out and then go over the layout I like with ink and a brush. It is foiled at the printers, so that the lettering is shiny and colourful, all done on a white card. When I designed FC2 back in 1998, to have a birthday card without pictures was unheard of. These days calligraphy & hand-lettering, or at least fonts that look like hand-lettering are everywhere- calligraphy is in vogue!

FC2 birthday card

FC2 birthday card

So time to do something new! I submitted my first design proposal to my publisher at the beginning of last year. At that time I imagined it having gold calligraphy on a heavily textured card, simple & elegant. I went out to see what was out there and as so often happens, the market was flooded with what I thought was a totally original idea. Back to the drawing board as they say! Taking the calligraphic element and the type header from my original designs, I moved on and came up with a variety of new design options. To show you how the final 'Kirsten Burke' cards came to life, here are pictures to show the development.

All these ideas were rejected for one reason or another, until I was looking a Pinterest board I was putting together. I noticed how eye-catching black and white stripes are against a collection of other images. Bingo! I had my new design idea and I began feverishly mocking up a collection of 14 cards. This is the amount of designs I do when submitting anything new. Having this many shows the publisher that the design works as a range, and that it works  as a birthday card as well as a 'get well' card, while still working within the design formula. It was a hit; I could tell it worked because the designs flowed. 

The stripe is born!

The size of the card is changed and the designs are tweeked

After 4 months solidly working on striped cards, they are done. I am so excited about it, I really love them. Printed in vibrant, solid colours that look fabulous against the black stripes, and with the type and calligraphy embossed to give the cards a great feel too, I really think they are fabulous, but I would I suppose. I hope you like them too and I hope you will notice them in a greeting card shop near you very soon. Please feel free to comment and let me know your thoughts. 

The calligraphy, image and font is embossed

Kirsten Burke cards- the range cello bagged and ready to hit the shops

Thanks for taking the time to visit the blog and enjoy your own calligraphy adventures. Until next time...

Very kind regards, Kirsten

Personal Marks, Written Traces

modern calligraphyKirri CasaliComment

Today, surrounded by technology, humans have an inner need to leave a personal mark, written traces, in their daily lives. Evident in cities, where walls are covered in graffiti. As humans, we react to form and texts with our senses. These handmade letter-forms have an infinite metamorphosis of expression. Even if we can't read the language the handwritten work is in, we can gain an understanding of it's message through the expression of the mark making. The forms of these letters can change so much they become illegible in any language. In these cases, when the text can't be read, it is seen as a whole, and read by the senses, just as with abstract painting.

Many contemporary calligraphers are unsatisfied with the term 'calligraphy'. Hans Joachim Burgert prefers to speak of 'the art of linear writing'. He believes Western calligraphy has not yet developed all the possibilities and potentialities of the line. While many western calligraphers stay focused on the repetition of historical forms, weighted down by the tradition of writing, he works using the open spaces of a graphic line.

Hans Joachim Burgert 

Hans Joachim Burgert 

Experience and technique are important so that we can use both traditional and invented writing instruments in the best way possible. Writing is becoming more and more popular, it's 'in vogue'. Handwriting is a renovated form of expression, full of the ideas and gestures of the scribe, a unique work of art each time!

Calligraphy has been Reinvented!

art, modern calligraphyKirri CasaliComment

There has always been a battle in the calligraphic world - freedom vs. discipline. There are those that only advocate disciplined, legible work and those, myself included who prefer expressive, abstract lettering; who have no issue with the work being illegible. For the latter gang, it is the strength of the mark, the power behind it, not the traditional form that is exciting. 

Kirsten Burke's calligraphy using an automatic pen
Edward Johnston's formal calligraphy
Edward Johnston's instruction on penmanship

That said, I had a formal training so that I understood the rules and geometry behind creating the letterform, before going crazy with a ruling pen. I felt that with a foundation knowledge, I could then move on and break the rules. With amazing teachers such as Gerald Fluess, Gaynor Goffe and Ewan Clayton, I learnt the history and rules of calligraphy. The knowledge they passed on to me has served me well, it has meant I am able to complete work for clients who require formal styles of calligraphy, as well as those who want something expressive.

Kirsten Burke ruling pen calligraphy

Now I have worked as a professional calligrapher for 18 years now and the times they are a changing. From America comes a new sort of calligraphy. This new calligraphy is anything but formal, yet it isn't about the expression of letterform either. It seems to be inspired by the 'vintage' 'shabby chic' style; Pinterest is full of this curly, deliberately naive looking lettering. Huge contrasts between the thick and thin strokes and created, not, as I was taught, with a flat nib held at a constant angle, but instead with a fine nib and applying more or less pressure.

Molly Jaques's Modern Calligraphy
Molly Jacques

I am intrigued by all this, calligraphy has been reinvented. The cobwebs have been blown away and the stuffiness has vanished with this new, funky, instant style of lettering. There are tutorials and demos everywhere you look online, one is even called 'how to cheat at calligraphy'. But is it cheating? If it looks pretty, does it matter that you didn't study for years and have never heard of the Lindisfarne Gospels?! I don't think it does. This new calligraphy lets everyone have a go, it's light and fun. So hooray, lets all get busy with a dip pen and a pot of ink, and see if we can make something quick, beautiful and fun.

A token of gratitude and well-deserved indulgence this Mother's day.

Kirri CasaliComment

The gift of Jo Malone London is always a welcome luxury. Choosing is almost as exciting as receiving! What will you pick for your amazing mum from Jo Malone's unexpected scents, coveted candles and sumptuous bath and body care?

jomalone_mothersday

Reminiscent of a French perfumier's studio, the walls of Jo Malone are lined with a library of elegantly bottled scents. On offer is an unusual and youthful selection of fragrance combining, room scents and expensive skincare products. You can even design your own custom made combination - like mixing citrus top notes of lime basil and madarin with spicy amber and lavender for the base notes. All of these little bottles of heavenly scents come beautifully packaged in signature cream and black boxes tied up with ribbed ribbon.

I am in their beautiful Royal Exchange London store this Wednesday, quill in hand, ready to write your personal message on the box, creating the most perfect Mother's day gift. What a lasting impression, as she takes in the scent, while reading your message of love.

kirstenburke

Refurbished in 2001, the Royal Exchange is now home to many of the world's finest brands. It closed as a centre of commerce in 1939, although for a few years it did house the London International Financial Futures Exchange. It is now a luxurious shopping centre, selling particularly high end goods like Jo Malone, Tiffany’s, Chanel jewellery and Louis Vuitton.

 


Telephone: 08701 925131

Website: www.jomalone.co.uk

Designer Insights- Kirsten Burke

calligraphyKirri CasaliComment

Tudor Davies interviews Kirsten Burke, to add to the 'designer insights' section of his website. Tudor profiles prestigious designers and design enthusiasts, gaining a keen understanding of their creative process, their background and what they use for inspiration.

- Transcript -  1) In your own words describe your unique style and creative aesthetic? My work differs from most calligraphers, due to my interest in the strength of mark, rather than with studying lettering from the past. I look for energy, rather than accuracy in my letter-forms. I have an understanding of the geometry of lettering, so that I can move that on and create what I call ‘contemporary’ calligraphy. 2) When starting a new project, what is your creative process? I love beginning a project, my mind fills with ideas and the first thing I to do is narrow them down. I work and think visually, so I start by putting boards together in Pinterest. This also allows me to show my client what I am thinking. It is a great way of checking that the lines I am proposing are what clients want. Then, I start sketching ideas out; big sheets of paper, ink and a quill are needed for this part. I photograph what I have done, and if the client is happy I work up the final piece. 3) Out of the creative people you have worked with, who is it that you respect and admire the most? I have my business partner Jill with me in the studio, I talk all my ideas through with her, show her my visuals and get her feedback on everything. I love having her there to bat ideas back and forth, I get stuck otherwise. Her feedback sparks new ideas in me and helps me move projects forward. 4) When looking for inspiration is there a particular thing you do to get inspired? I always find inspiration at an art gallery. When I lived in London my favourite was the Whitechapel Gallery. Now I live in West Sussex, I take a trip to The Pallant Gallery in Chichester. There is always something beautiful and unexpected on show there that catches my imagination. I was there last week and loved Barbara Rae’s prints and the paintings of J.D. Fergusson, I love that kind of bold and confident use of colour. 5) What has brought you to this point in your career? And what is your advice for people looking to follow in your footsteps? I worked chalking up menu boards for a restaurant chain, saving all my money to launch myself as a calligrapher, by having an exhibition. There are very few professional calligraphers, so I made my way without having anyone to follow. From that show, I got my first client- The Globe Theatre. That was 1997 and I have been working as a calligrapher ever since. So if you have something you want to do for a living, get what you do out there, get people to seeing it and with a little luck you too could be doing what you love as your job.

- Transcript - 

1) In your own words describe your unique style and creative aesthetic?

My work differs from most calligraphers, due to my interest in the strength of mark, rather than with studying lettering from the past. I look for energy, rather than accuracy in my letter-forms. I have an understanding of the geometry of lettering, so that I can move that on and create what I call ‘contemporary’ calligraphy.

2) When starting a new project, what is your creative process?

I love beginning a project, my mind fills with ideas and the first thing I to do is narrow them down. I work and think visually, so I start by putting boards together in Pinterest. This also allows me to show my client what I am thinking. It is a great way of checking that the lines I am proposing are what clients want. Then, I start sketching ideas out; big sheets of paper, ink and a quill are needed for this part. I photograph what I have done, and if the client is happy I work up the final piece.

3) Out of the creative people you have worked with, who is it that you respect and admire the most?

I have my business partner Jill with me in the studio, I talk all my ideas through with her, show her my visuals and get her feedback on everything. I love having her there to bat ideas back and forth, I get stuck otherwise. Her feedback sparks new ideas in me and helps me move projects forward.

4) When looking for inspiration is there a particular thing you do to get inspired?

I always find inspiration at an art gallery. When I lived in London my favourite was the Whitechapel Gallery. Now I live in West Sussex, I take a trip to The Pallant Gallery in Chichester. There is always something beautiful and unexpected on show there that catches my imagination. I was there last week and loved Barbara Rae’s prints and the paintings of J.D. Fergusson, I love that kind of bold and confident use of colour.

5) What has brought you to this point in your career? And what is your advice for people looking to follow in your footsteps?

I worked chalking up menu boards for a restaurant chain, saving all my money to launch myself as a calligrapher, by having an exhibition. There are very few professional calligraphers, so I made my way without having anyone to follow. From that show, I got my first client- The Globe Theatre. That was 1997 and I have been working as a calligrapher ever since. So if you have something you want to do for a living, get what you do out there, get people to seeing it and with a little luck you too could be doing what you love as your job.

The Kirsten Burke Interview: Designer Lady, Designer Style

Kirri CasaliComment

As you may already know, Kirsten Burke designs wedding stationery exclusively for Bride & Groom Direct, under the Mandalay name. She loves to give a contemporary twist to the hottest trends and we hope that when you see her Mandalay invitations, you instantly fall in love with their opulent feel and graceful design.

Kirsten's 2014 Wedding Stationery Designs

Kirsten's 2014 Wedding Stationery Designs

Bride and Groom's took the chance to interview Kirsten Burke about the inspiration behind her new designs.

Hello Kirsten, lovely to meet you!  A few people say you have an almost psychic ability to know what Brides are looking for in their wedding stationery. Can you confirm or deny these theories?

*Little laughter* I’ve never heard those theories before, but I will take them as a compliment!  Sadly no I’m not psychic, but I do really believe in getting as much insight from Brides as possible. I speak to over 200 Brides-to-be before I even touch a design. People often forget that choosing your wedding stationery is no easy task. You are trying to post out a ‘little taste’ of your wedding - something that’s going to represent you as a couple and give an insight to the type of event that you’ve got planned. Each of these elements have to be contained within each invitation and it’s a challenge which really makes designers, like myself, pull out all the stops, and come up with something truly enchanting.

From the catwalks of Paris to Mandalay, what do you think Brides are looking for in 2014?

Most of us, however fashion conscious we are, want elegant, timelessness within our wedding. Fun, quirky even, but always pretty and sophisticated. With this in mind, I have used cute fonts and fashion led illustration, bringing in ribbon and pearlised card as well as the current American trend for ‘large flat cards’ which is making its way over here. I hope in the five new collections for 2014 that I have a design to suit everyone.

Visit http://www.brideandgroomdirect.co.uk/mandalay-wedding-invitations to view all these ranges in full.

Flourish Design takes inspiration from the American Trends

Flourish Design takes inspiration from the American Trends

Botanics Wedding Stationery

Botanics Wedding Stationery

‘Fairytale’ brings florals, hand lettering and delicate organza ribbons together, for a truly whimsical wedding invitation.

‘Fairytale’ brings florals, hand lettering and delicate organza ribbons together, for a truly whimsical wedding invitation.