How To Do A Brush Lettering: The Ultimate Guide6 min read

Brush lettering can seem like a very niche technique but it’s a great way of adding personal touches to your designs. With the right techniques, you can use a simple pencil and some creativity to create beautiful works of art. If you’ve not come across brush lettering before, it is essentially an alternative version of hand-lettering (or using calligraphy) that involves using a brush rather than a pen or marker. While it might seem like there are very few advantages to this technique compared to the more common pen and marker, once you try it you’ll understand why so many people love it so much. Brush lettering is perfect for adding personal touches to your designs by allowing you to focus on the beauty of the letters rather than how perfect they need to be. It is also easy enough that anyone can learn how in just minutes. Here’s our ultimate guide!

Why you should learn brush lettering

Brush lettering is a beautiful technique that allows you to add beautiful handwritten flourishes to your designs. You can use it to add handwritten text to logos, or even to create beautiful decorative pieces that really add something special to your work. Brush lettering can often be mistaken for calligraphy, but the two are actually quite different. Calligraphy is created using a nib and ink which allows for greater precision and more intricate designs. Brush lettering is excellent for adding playful and fun designs to your work, perfect if you want to create something a little bit different. Brushes are also perfect if you want to try your hand at creating hand-drawn logos or are looking to add a more hand-made feel to your designs.

Brush Lettering Tools

The first thing you’ll need to do is decide what tools you want to use to create your brush lettering. There are a variety of different tools that are perfect for this, so you’ll need to choose what is right for you. The first and most important thing to keep in mind when selecting a tool is that it needs to be made from a soft material, such as a paintbrush or a hairbrush.

  • Brushes – Brushes are probably the most common tools used for brush lettering. They are easy to find and cheap to buy, making them a great option for beginners. Brushes are also easy to use and can create a wide range of effects.
  • Brush Strokes – Another common tool used for brush lettering is a brush stroke. This is where you drag a brush across paper or a bristled board repeatedly to create a pattern of brush strokes.
  • Dip Pen – Dip pens are used for calligraphy, but can also be used for brush lettering. If you want to go for a more traditional approach, a dip pen is perfect.
  • Foam Pen – Foam pens are similar to paintbrushes in that you can use them to create both thick and thin lines.

Step 1: Sketch your design

Whatever tool you choose, the first step in creating beautiful brush lettering is sketching your design. This is the same for any other type of lettering, but it is particularly important with brush lettering as you need to be sure that your design is balanced and easy to read. Brush lettering is a lot less controlled than other types of lettering, so you need to be sure that your design is simple enough that you can make it look good even when you’re not being as careful as you would be when using a pen. You can sketch your design on paper or straight onto your computer. If you are sketching on paper, it can be useful to do it lightly so that it is easy to erase if you make a mistake.

Step 2: Trace your sketch

Once you have your design sketched out, you will want to trace it onto your chosen surface. This is where it is really important to remember that your tool needs to be soft, as you don’t want to damage the paper with a hard tool. If you are using paper, you can just trace over your design using a pencil. If you are using a computer, you can use the pen tool to trace over your design as a line. The most important thing to remember when tracing is to be light. You want your lines to appear as though you’ve drawn them, not as though you’ve traced them. If you press too hard, you’ll create grooves in your paper that will show up in your final design.

Step 3: Add colour

Once you have your sketch traced, it’s time to add colour. To do this, you can use crayons, pencils, markers, or anything else you want. The most important thing is to be creative and have fun with it! There are no rules when it comes to brushing lettering, so just try different things until you find something that you like. You can also choose to add multiple colours to your design, though you need to remember that the colour will show up lighter when you write with it. If you want your colours to be really vibrant, you might want to use thicker paper or card stock. Thicker paper can also help if you are using markers and find that the ink bleeds through the paper.

Step 4: Add shadows and highlights

Now that you have your design, you can add shadows and highlights for a more three-dimensional look. To do this, you can use different shades of your chosen colour, or even different colours. You can either add these to your design while it is still on the surface you are working on, or you can write your design and then add these effects with a paintbrush or something similar once you have written your design. It is important to remember that the colour you use to create shadows and highlights needs to be darker than the colour you use in your design.


Brush lettering is not only a beautiful way to add personal touches to your designs, it’s also a great way to play with different colours and effects. It is easy enough that anyone can give it a go, meaning that you don’t need to be a calligraphy expert to create beautiful work. Brush lettering is perfect for adding playful and fun designs to your work, and is a great alternative to the more common pen and marker.