Home Shopping The Love List Real DIYer: Melissa Esplin {I Still Love You // ISLY}

Melissa Esplin is a Real DIYer to the core, and creator of I Still Love Calligraphy - the online calligraphy classes I talked about last week.  We had the delightful opportunity of engaging Melissa Esplin of I Still Love You with a lovely interview for the blog today.  A great read for your lunch hour.

Melissa Esplin // ISLY

Did you start your business from scratch? How did you get started?

I started my business from scratch. My blog, I Still Love You, started out as an ode to my hobbies, and it slowly morphed into a freelance business. My blog has a heavy DIY tone to it, so a lot of my readers were wondering how they could learn calligraphy. After teaching live workshops, I needed to move it to a more accessible arena: online. It’s been so thrilling to see beginning calligraphers get the lettering bug and move on to bigger and better things!

{For those who haven’t yet, subscribe to Melissa’s blog: I Still Love You}

Melissa Esplin // ISLY // Calligraphy Envelopes

What do you love most about your work, and what did you do before this?

I love that I do what I love and nothing else. <– Who else can say this about their career?  Melissa, you rock!

I worked in the graphic design industry for 6 years before striking on my own. It’s so wonderful to take on clients that understand my point of view and want it specifically. Starting out with a trusting client/designer relationship is one of the key ingredients for me to make my best work.

ISLY Calligraphy Lettered Envelopes

What attracts you to the DIY wedding and craft industries?

My mom and dad are DIYers and gave me the bug. My mom sews, bakes, gardens and scrapbooks; and my dad builds, makes jewelry and rides bikes (motorcycles and bicycles). They’ve both had quite the lengthy lists of hobbies and encouraged me to do the same! 


Describe your idea of a perfect work day.  

Most of my days are perfectly imperfect.

We have breakfast together as a family, the babysitter comes to play with the kids while I get work done and clear out my inbox, I eat lunch with the kids, play games and take naps with the kids, we eat dinner together as a family, then the kids go to bed. After the kids go to bed Chris and I either project together, veg together, or enjoy some much-needed alone time. ;)

As you can tell I never mention dirty diapers, dishes, laundry or cleaning (mostly because that never happens). 



What DIY projects are you working on right now?

Currently I’m working on revamping my dresser and decorating my house. I just stained the dresser blue and I’m working on getting artwork on the walls. We just bought our first house and are in the process of decorating it.

Oh, how fun!  Congrats on your new home, Melissa!


How would you describe your own wedding style?

I got married 6 years ago, before wedding blogs and pinterest were crucial for planning. We had a tight budget of $6000 (most people don’t believe this) and we came in just under budget at $5500. We DIY-ed a lot of it! I think if I could do my wedding over again, I would do a lot of the same things. We had orange and cream for our colors. We had it at an art hall (I displayed my art as decorations). I wore my mother’s dress from the late ’70s. We made the best food ever (my mom made it and I ate it). We had clementines and lilies everywhere. I loved it!

I think everyone should look back at their weddings and take some sort of ownership over at least part of the celebration, whether it was making a dress or curating the style and decor.  <–great advice!


ISLY // Hand Lettered Sign


Disclosure: DIY Bride has a financial relationship with I Still Love Calligraphy, meaning we may have received compensation for this content and/or related content.  We firmly stand behind our review and recommendation, and are committed to promoting only those companies we feel offer our community excellent products, ethical business practices, and outstanding customer service.



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