Welcome to my very first blog!

I'm excited to blog about agate slices, one of my favorite materials. I am obsessed with hand-lettering on agate slices! I love how each slice has a range of hues, undulated lines and no two slices are alike. They are beautiful, polished and unique. Plus the smooth surface is great for hand-lettering. If you’re looking for a nontraditional material other than paper, agate slices are a great alternative. Also, they are very versatile and you will fall in love with its beauty!

One of the most common questions people ask me is “what kind of pen do you recommend?” There are many different ones you can use, and honestly, it's a personal preference. My favorite is the dip pen for calligraphy lettering. I prefer an Adjusted Turned Wood Oblique Holder as the angle creates a better ink flow on the agate slice. White ink is best for that pop of contrast, but you can use any color.  Acrylic-based ink adheres to the agate’s surface very well, and you can easily clean up with water. My favorite brand is Daler Rowney Acrylic Artists white ink. My other favorite ink color is Dr. Ph. Martin’s Gold. Other great pens to use are Molotow and Sakura One-Touch pens.  I’m always looking for new pens to try out, so please share your favorites with me. :)

Hand-lettering on agate slices can be tricky especially if it's a long quote. What I do first is traced the shape onto a piece of paper. Then pencil in the words to get the placement and spacing correctly. Once I was happy with the layout, I used it as a guide while I hand-letter on the agate. The key is to take your time and go slowly. If you're using water-based ink and you make a mistake/typo, wipe it off immediately before it dries. I keep cotton swabs on hand as the small tips are very handy. When you're done, leave it overnight to dry completely. And that's it!


1. As Wall Art & Decor

Switch out the common framed artwork with agate slices as wall art. Find your inspirational quote or a mantra word and hand-letter it on an agate slice. It will be something different and add color to your wall.


Perhaps you’ve been looking for a personal and unique wedding gift? Find a big agate slice and hand-letter the couple’s vows on it. I purchased gold nails at Home Depot then added four nails around the edges to “hang” it on the wall. I don’t recommend nailing it through the agate as it will most likely crack or break it. That would be no bueno. Haha The agate slice for the vows was approximate 4" x 5" and I got it from The Hollow Geode on Etsy.


2. As Coasters

How cute are these coasters?! They’re great for a housewarming or a wedding gift.  You can make the design all the same or you can add a different design to each one. Be sure to add a protective sealer to prevent scratches. I purchased these four agate slices from The Hollow Geode on Etsy.


3. As a Birth Announcement

My sweet college friends had a baby girl.  I wanted to send a gift to commemorate her birth. I painted the edge in a rose gold and hand-lettered Stella’s birth information on it. Simple yet adorable. This agate beauty was purchased from The Hollow Geode on Etsy.


4. As Place Cards/Escort Cards

This is most likely the most popular usage of agate slices. They’re very trendy for weddings as a place card/escort card. You can order them with or without gold leafing on the edges. Personally, I'd spend the extra fee for the gold leafing as it makes a "wow" statement. The size ranges but these are approximately 2” x 3”. Small but classy. It will definitely glam out your #tablescape! The bride purchased these from 309DesignsCo on Etsy. See more photos here.


5. As a Party Favor

If you don't put table numbers on the agate slices, it can also be the party favor. So no need to spend more moola. Wedding guests will have a unique party favor and it's personalized. A win-win! See more photos here.


Thank you for reading my very first blog! Hopefully you found it helpful, and it gave you ideas for your next project.

Until next time my dears...


Create & Inspire,

Mai Jill