Where are you originally from? And how long have you been in Portland?
I am an Oregon native; I have been here the whole time!
What is your favorite thing about Portland?
Portland has a rich art and food culture that I love, with a great blend of recreation and sport as well. I love this city.
What is your favorite spot or thing to do in Portland?
Best day is to wake up early for a trail run in Forrest Park and then off to breakfast and hot coffee. That’s the best. THE BEST.
How long have you been working as a professional wedding calligrapher?
Though we have been working on weddings and events for family and friends since early 2015 we have been taking on clients professionally, with much success since 2016.
I love calligraphy and letter writing, its what I do for fun, so making it a part of someone’s big day, seemed like an easy way to share what I love to do with others.
How would you describe the importance of your role and why do you feel a couple should hire a professional calligrapher for their wedding day?
It is important to be able to trust your vendors, not only to deliver on your vision but also to deliver on time. When you make an investment in a professional, you’re not only supporting the livelihood of their craft but also can expect to see your vision come to life.
What is the best part of your job?
Seeing our signage and custom projects bring tears to people’s eyes. There is something really beautiful about seeing a quote or a meaningful message brought to life through lettering.
What do you find most challenging about your specific line of work or weddings in general?
We do quite a bit of our business in addressing envelopes and doing place card settings, might we remind everyone to RSVP on time to your bride and groom? It helps everyone out! We often recommend to our couples to overprint their invitations, menus, and envelopes, you never know how lifesaving 5 extra invites can be, even if you end up with them as a keepsake.
Photo: This is Amanda, the owner and talent behind Grish & Watson!
Do you work solo or do you have a studio and/or team?
We are a small and mighty team, made up of one full-time employee, and rotational seasonal staff.
What do you attribute to your success as a wedding calligrapher? What do you think makes you stand apart from others in your field?
We truly love what we do, we love bringing your vision to life, and we also pay forward a portion of every project we complete. Ten percent of all of our profits are donated to organizations empowering women and girls.
At what point in the wedding planning process should clients hire you?
At the beginning! We love working through the save the date, and invitation process with you, and then tackling place settings, seating arrangements, thank you cards, and signs. We’re your one-stop shop, and we’re happy to space out the process to make it as convenient as possible for you.
Where do you draw inspiration? Are there any current trends you are excited about?
We love everything hand-lettered and are constantly inspired by traditional calligraphy.
What is the most important thing that couples should ask someone in your profession before hiring them?
Samples, please! Let’s work with the paper you want to use, and play! It is so much easier to try things out in the beginning, then to wait till the end!
What is your best advice for wedding clients?
Deep breath, perspective is everything during such an exciting time, ask as many questions as you can, and be okay saying no, or asking for help! Also congrats- you’re getting married!
Anything else you’d like couples to know about you?
You don’t have to have a game plan yet, we love starting with Pinterest boards, a post-it noted magazine or images from that wedding you LOVED! We are here to help you organize your ideas against your budget. You can do this, and we’re here to help!