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Manuscript - Creating Calligraphy


Manuscript are a company based in Shropshire, here in the UK, who specialise in designing and producing fountain pens and dip pens for calligraphy. The company is owned and operated by the Stockbridge family who have five generations of experience making and distributing nibs in the West Midlands, which was once a world centre for pen and nib production.

The brand as we know it today began life 25 years ago when Nick Stockbridge - father of the current Deputy Managing Director Charlie created the company to fulfil his own passion for writing and calligraphy. The family's association with writing instruments however, began in 1856 through its association with D. Leonardt & Co, from which point it has produced high-quality nibs and pens under various different guises both for itself and for other well-known brands such as Platignum (circa. 1950).

Manuscript is a company run by people with a passion for writing and calligraphy and their management team (like ours!) includes a dog - Crumble the Labrador - who fulfils a role not too dissimilar from that of Herbie the spaniel here at Cult Pens!

The current brand has a huge range of pens, nibs and related products, with the perfect tools for experienced calligraphers, alongside some top-quality kits for beginners with everything you'd need to get started.

To coincide with the arrival of Manuscript here at Cult Pens, we have a great offer for you. Spend £15 or more on Manuscript products, get a copy of Manuscript's step-by-step calligraphy guide free! Perfect for beginners and enthusiasts alike, this book teaches everything from the basics of pen control, right up to advanced calligraphy techniques and lettering styles.

Competition now closed. Please see the comments section below for details of the winning entries.

That isn't all though, we've also got a collection of calligraphy sets to give away.

There are three prizes in total, each containing enough calligraphy goodies to get you well on the road to being an expert calligrapher!

To be in with a chance of winning, let us know - in the comments below - what you would write with a shiny new calligraphy set. The more creative the better. We'll pick our favourite three entries and notify the winners on the 1st of November.

3 October 2014


  • Andrew S (Cultpens Team) 3 November 2014

    Thanks for all of your entries. We've picked our favourites and the winners were: Vicky C, Sorlie M and Alison T.

  • Josie S 29 October 2014

    After many years of trying (and failing) to find a system to keep track of the many balls I have in the air; to keep me focused and productive, I have finally cracked it. I had tried everything from analogue through digital and nothing worked. Lately though, quite by chance, I found the key. Bullet point journalling. As with all the other strategies, this alone was also destined to fail though. The silver bullet (bad pun intended) was to use a pen that gave me sheer enjoyment in the mechnics of writing. This then ensures that the time spent administering the system is not a chore. I'm currently wearing down the tips of the Artline Calligraphy pens at a rate of one per fortnight!

  • Yang L 24 October 2014

    I've been doodling around with my Lamy Vista fountain pen that I got from here a while back, and recently, I've been thinking of saving up for a set of calligraphy pens (or at least an italic and flex nibs, those things are expensive!!) If I won this, I'd use it to improve my calligraphy skills, hopefully just in time for the holiday season! (Also try my hand at writing in Chinese for Chinese New Year!)

  • Sundeep G 24 October 2014

    If I won this beautiful manuscript set I would make time for writing more in my life.... poems, messages and verses from the Dharmapada, an ancient Buddhist text, beautifully worded and reminders for focusing on what is important in life. As a lover of all things of aesthetic beauty, this gift would be a lovely addition enabling me to pass on messages written with the aesthetics of writing in mind.

  • Katherine A 22 October 2014

    I always try to make my own Christmas cards and in the past have knitted then, felted them or made them from photographs. A few months ago I discovered 'Zentangles' - basic a fancy name for doodling! I'm going to try to make 'Zentangle' Christmas cards this year and am guessing that these wonderful pens would help. And who knows, if I win the prize then next year I may be producing Calligraphy Christmas cards!

  • Gail M 21 October 2014

    I decided a few months back that much as I enjoy reading a lot of both fiction and non-fiction, there didn't seem to be any poetry in my life any more (literally, I mean - there was plenty of metaphorical poetry!). So I've started reading a poem every day and memorising some that particularly resonate with me. Some in particular have seemed associated with certain loved ones. I was already thinking of writing the poems out and framing them as gifts for these special people. Using calligraphy pens would make the gifts even more special.

  • Alison T 17 October 2014

    I'd show my two daughters how fabulous calligraphy makes your writing even more special. I'd also write a letter from Father Christmas to my youngest daughter. I love using fountain pens to write and this set would be great to help me get back into the art of beautiful letter formation

  • Julia I 11 October 2014

    I love making my own cards but the lettering I do always let's them down. If I won one of the Manuscript pen sets I would learn the ancient art of beautiful lettering to use on my cards making them beautiful.

  • Sorlie M 10 October 2014

    I'm just a few pages away from finishing my sketchbook. If I won a Manuscript Calligraphy set, I'd hunt down crisp, pen-loving paper and make a new sketchbook. It would contain layers and surprises, slips of parchment or handmade papers, and tiny envelopes for looseleaf documents. I'd carry it with me everywhere (I've had my current one for more than 2 years), and it would be the first sketchbook I'd ever had that was made for a specific set of pens. Armed with both sketchbook and pens, everywhere I'd go I'd feel like a wandering scribe on the hunt for mysteries to document. I'd become a legend in museums and galleries that permit the use of pens, and make the ones that don't wish they'd better thought out their sketching policies. The pens would have nicknames and the book a grand title; I would be trying to earn a nickname or a grand title of my own. The pens, the sketchbook and I: truly it would be the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

  • David N 9 October 2014

    After recently proposing to my fiancée I'd use this set to hand write my vows and to create some beautiful invitations for the big day.

  • Glenn H 7 October 2014

    If I won one of the Manuscript Calligraphy Sets, I'd give learning a script a shot and see how well I could reproduce it. I'm new to fountain pens and have fallen in love with italic nibs, so learning an italic script would be right on the mark. It would be great fun to add the special touch of calligraphy to the address on envelopes.

  • Camilla S 7 October 2014

    I would find a good, permanent ink and rolls of plain wallpaper that handles ink well and write down the love story that is our family story on those rolls. Then I would have to decide if I wanted to put the handmade wallpaper up in the privacy of our bedroom or perhaps the living room. :)

  • Vicky C 7 October 2014

    If fortune favoured my little note And plain Arial Black won the vote I would transform my type and nourish Lost handwriting skills with a eloquent flourish Write a pen history with smooth ink flow To keep the pen fans in the know Egypt's papyrus scrolls and reed brushes by the Nile Through Waterman's first fountain pen, that took a while Ending up where we are today Some lucky winner with this set on its way

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