• Nusaybah

Our Favourite Supplies for Arabic Calligraphy

We always get asked which pens we use for Arabic calligraphy (especially after the video we shared on Sunday) on Instagram so finally here they are!

Pointed vs Broad Edged nibs

When you're doing Arabic calligraphy you want to make sure you're using a broad-edged/ chisel tipped pen. That's how you get the beautiful contrast between the thick and thick strokes. You can't use a pointed nib or brush pen like you might use for modern English or Copperplate calligraphy as you won't get the broad strokes in the right places. See the picture below for what a broad edged nib looks like!

I've divided all the supplies we use for Arabic calligraphy into three groups:

1) Essentials

2) Adding colour/ metallics

3) Arabic calligraphy on different surfaces

There's only one pen we use for almost everything so to learn Arabic calligraphy you don't need to buy a whole load of expensive equipment!


Our absolute favourite is the Pilot Parallel Pen and that's what we learnt with and what we use for over 90% of our work!

The Pilot Parallel Pen is available in 4 different sizes (we have three) and we have a few of the medium sized one so that a few colour options are available of each at any given time.

The Pilot Parallel Pen is great as it comes with a two cartridges and a few tools for easily cleaning your pen too!

A few simple drawing tools will also come in handy when you want to put your calligraphy in different shapes when you're making it more decorative like the gold cards below!

Adding colour

One of our favourite ways to make our Arabic calligraphy colourful apart from using coloured ink cartridges is to use metallic and handmade watercolour! That's what we used in the cards above.

We love using the Kuretake metallic watercolours, coliro have a huge range of beautiful colours and when you use handmade watercolours, the colours and special effect possibilities are endless!

Some of our favourite handmade watercolours are @kmswatercolor's watercolours and if you use the link below you can get 10% off all Katelyn's amazing paints!


When adding these watercolours, use a medium sized paintbrush to paint the tip of your Parallel Pen (or a different broad nibbed pen) and write. This takes a lot longer as the pen's tip has to be repeatedly painted, every few letters sometimes, but the effects you get with these are amazing!

If you have a cartridge inside your pen and then paint the nib in gold you'll get beautiful gold and black writing!

Arabic calligraphy on different surfaces

We most frequently do Arabic calligraphy on paper so haven't got a great deal of experience with this, but the few times we have done it on another surface, we always use a chisel-tipped Posca pen. You need to make sure it's chisel-tipped otherwise you won't be getting the Arabic pen effect, you'll need to go over all your strokes to make them thicker and it won't look as consistent or neat. The Posca pens we have are very broad, so you may prefer a thinner pen.

Posca pens are available in a huge range of colours and metallic options are also available!

These are pretty much all the pens we use for Arabic calligraphy and we really hope this is useful! If it's useful let us know I'm the comments and we'd love if you shared it to other who are interested in Arabic calligraphy! If you've got any questions or suggestions for future blog posts, let us know in the comments or DM us on Instagram!

Next week we're hoping to do our favourite supplies for English calligraphy or a tutorial on foiling with a laminator!