“When I was in high school, I learned classic calligraphy, and through the years I used it to do small jobs for family and friends. Then 10 years ago, my husband and I, with our two kids and cats, moved from the East to the West Coast. My hands were full, but I needed a creative outlet, so I picked up calligraphy again.
“Inspired by modern calligraphers, I changed my classic style to a more organic and whimsical look — basically my handwriting with personality. Then a friend told me about Etsy, an online marketplace where I could reach thousands of people and make money with my hobby. So I opened Featherletter (Etsy.com/shop/featherletter).
“At first, I offered wedding envelope addressing and place cards, but then I started getting requests for other things like personalized stamps and calligraphy signs. Eventually, I added custom wedding vows and poems to be framed as gifts, gift tags (my most popular holiday item), place cards for holiday parties and holiday and thank-you stamps.
“To market the business, I’m listed as a calligrapher on various wedding websites, have my business cards at local paper and gift shops and pay a small fee to advertise on Etsy. My earnings average around $400 to $600 a month. I am just so happy to have this creative side hustle I truly enjoy doing. I love that my customers share a little piece of their lives with me, and that I’m able to give them something they will always treasure.”
This story originally appeared in our print magazine.