2017: My Year in Review | Atlanta Calligrapher & Wedding Invitation Designer

New Year’s resolutions give me the heeby geebiez. There, I said it! Just as I’m getting settled into the grove of a year, it suddenly has to change to a new year all over again and then I’m just left feeling flustered. So is life… always moving too fast for me to keep up.

 PIN this for later! 

PIN this for later! 

2017 was the year of so many different things for me. It ended very well. The last 4 months were wonderful, but the rest of the year was really hard. Without diving too much into all of that, I will just say I was happy with the way 2017 shaped up at the end and not too thrilled with a bunch of parts in the middle. I’m thankful I have a husband who stands by me, loves me, forgives me, and holds onto me no matter what! I’m convinced I snagged the best man in the whole world.

So now here I am. It’s the first day of January (January, ug, my least favorite month), it’s freaking cold outside here in Georgia so I can’t imagine how those of you up North must feel, and all the foliage is dead. Also, Christmas is over and the next holiday is Valentine's Day but that’s not nearly as cool. And now I’m watching all my amazing friends make their resolutions and pick words that represent their upcoming year and I’m sitting here with my arms crossed just happy with how things were. Trust me, I’m laughing at myself through all of this because it’s a stupid point of view to have. But come on… January? Let’s be real, nothing happens.

But let’s skip past my nonsensical and childish attitude to at least review a couple things from 2017 that were amazing for my business. After all, this blog is supposed to be dedicated to my business-related happenings! I’ve decided to pick a highlight (or two) from each month to kind of narrow things down.

JANUARY – Participated in a styled shoot organized by Detailed I Dos at Summerour Studio where I created an invitation suite I’m still incredibly proud of. The photo below is me styling my suite at the venue – I had no idea Michelle Scott Photo was taking it.

  Photo taken at Summerour Studio by  Michelle Scott Photo .

Photo taken at Summerour Studio by Michelle Scott Photo.

FEBRUARY – Launched my “Creating Hand-Lettered Wood Signs” course via Teachable and enrolled about 20 students, which I was very happy about for my first course! The course now exists as a private YouTube series to make it more accessible (and a lot cheaper) for people who want to learn how to make wood signs like me! You can purchase the PDF download here:

MARCH – Will and I adopted our second cat, Azula! In terms of business items, I was thankful to have a surprise feature on Joy Wed, as well as have the opportunity to write a guest post for The Postman’s Knock, one of the ladies in this industry that I admire the most!

APRIL – Worked on multiple different projects for brides nationwide! I had some amazing brides this year that I loved & the month of April featured most of the brides I was working with. Also took a trip to Charleston, SC with some amazing business friends! 

MAY – I hosted my first “Modern Calligraphy Workshop” ever in downtown Atlanta at Ambient Plus Studio. My entire experience was wonderful and I was so lucky to have my dear friend Laura Barnes photograph the event. If you're interested in signing up for one of my calligraphy workshops in 2018, keep an eye out for the list release mid-January 2018. I also completely updated & transformed my brand in one weekend; it was a huge step from the old look! 

  This is the first group of ladies I had the pleasure of teaching calligraphy to! A couple of them I still get to stay in touch with since they email me and ask questions occasionally! Photo by  Laura Barnes .

This is the first group of ladies I had the pleasure of teaching calligraphy to! A couple of them I still get to stay in touch with since they email me and ask questions occasionally! Photo by Laura Barnes.

JUNE – Helped set up wood signs at a wedding for the first time in my career. Usually my brides pick them up and take them on their own, but this time I delivered multiple signs to The Trolley Barn, a venue in Atlanta for a Detailed I Do’s wedding. (Katherine & Grant, your wedding was so amazing and beautiful!)

  One of the 3x3 feet wood signs installed at Katherine & Grant's wedding in June. Venue was The Trolley Barn in downtown Atlanta. Florals were by the wonderful  Victory Blooms . Photography by  Diana Lupu Photography .

One of the 3x3 feet wood signs installed at Katherine & Grant's wedding in June. Venue was The Trolley Barn in downtown Atlanta. Florals were by the wonderful Victory Blooms. Photography by Diana Lupu Photography.

JULY – My husband & I bought a second car, a 2004 Toyota Highlander, which has been perfect for delivering large wood signs and items to weddings! Also, by the time July finished I had collaborated in 7 different styled shoots that occurred in locations all over the US.

AUGUST – The month I decided I was done participating in styled shoots for the rest of the year after burning myself out on them! This was ultimately great for the last months of 2017 because I focused entirely on paying clients.

SEPTEMBER – Hosted the Biz Birthday Bash with Cami Monet of Cami Monet Watercolor & calligraphy! Cami & I road tripped to Savannah from our respective homes in Georgia and Florida to host an online webinar party called the Biz Birthday Bash! During this webinar we dished out our 5 Top Lessons Learned during the first year of our businesses (we both went full time on Sept. 16, 2016 – and we didn’t realize that until AFTER we met and became friends)! Visit this blog post to see the overview of what we talked about:

  Cami & I together in Savannah, Georgia. Thank you random stranger that took this photo for us! 

Cami & I together in Savannah, Georgia. Thank you random stranger that took this photo for us! 

OCTOBER – Made a stunning seating chart featuring 300 names for a golf-course wedding reception! This is one of the projects I am most proud of this year. It took so much planning, time, and love. I would happily make another of these for a 2018 wedding! I also had my first in-studio branding shoot with ByGabriella.

  This linen seating chart for a wedding at the Atlanta Athletic Club featured more than 300 names, with calligraphy on each card for the table numbers. Photo by  Carrie Joy Photography .

This linen seating chart for a wedding at the Atlanta Athletic Club featured more than 300 names, with calligraphy on each card for the table numbers. Photo by Carrie Joy Photography.

NOVEMBER – Attended the QuickBooks Connect conference where I was interviewed for a podcast, spoke on a panel, met Tyra Banks (for like 2 seconds), networked like crazy, and learned so much! The QuickBooks Self-Employed team arranged to have me flown out there and it was on my TOP experiences this year for sure. I absolutely LOVE using QuickBooks Self-Employed for my bookkeeping; if you want to learn more about it, check out this blog post:

DECEMBER – Wrapped up a bunch of amazing wood signs for holiday orders, as well as learned a ton from my first Christmas Card Collection… it wasn’t a success to say the least haha ;) Just being honest! But I’m excited to make some big changes and try again next year!

This about covers my business highlights for 2017; truth is, I really am excited about what 2018 holds, I just have to get over my "fear" of January.

Elisabeth