Which penholder should I choose?
The rules of calligraphy are always broken by somebody (often with great success) but general guidance for beginners would be:-
Right-handed calligraphers – use an oblique pen holder as this helps to hold the pen at the correct angle for copperplate writing and also gives you a wide choice of nibs; or a straight penholder with the angled Mitchell Copperplate nib (though this choice restricts you to this single nib).
Left-handed use a straight penholder because your arm and hand are already at the correct angle.
Choosing Copperplate nibs
There is no “best nib” for Copperplate or Spencerian writing. I normally advise beginners to buy a selection of nibs to try as the most suitable nib is a very personal choice. All the flexible nibs suitable for Copperplate vary in their size, flexibility and strength (pressure required). One person’s favourite nib might be unsuitable for someone else. One unbreakable rule is to be ruthless is discarding nibs that have begun to wear as they will never again produce the fine hairlines that distinguish this style of writing.
This is a selection of suitable nibs to buy for Copperplate:
Gillott 170 Nib
Gillott 303 Nib
Gillott 404 Nib
Hunt 22B Nib
Hunt 56 Nib
Hunt 101 Nib
Leonardt Crown Nib
Leonardt Copperplate 2 Point Nib DP111
Leonardt EF Principal Nib
Nikko G Nib
Zebra G Nib
All these nibs and holders can be found in our Copperplate Calligraphy area. We also stock various copperplate selections, which include an oblique penholder, nibs and some with ink which are suitable for Copperplate.