Hola! I’m Maria and I’m eager to share how calligraphy changed my life and how it too can change yours! I’m excited to share my passion with the world! What was once a hobby sparked into a business. 
Being a stay at home mom can often be stressful, time consuming and exhausting. It rarely lends to time for developing skills outside of child-rearing. However these are the circumstances in which an interest in calligraphy grew into a hobby, then evolved into my passion!
Initially as a way to de-stress, being a mother of two, I found calligraphy as a soothing, therapeutic practice of meticulous detail, patience and precision. Eventually discovering my artistic talents and interests through studying other calligraphers on Instagram, most specifically through @handletteredabcs !
In January or 2016, I was challenged and encouraged to not only explore my interest but also to develop my growing passion and new found talent. Writing on my mothers sugar and salt containers as a child was pleasing! I seriously thought I had some pretty cool handwriting. However this time around as a 27 year old I didn’t think that highly of my handwriting skills. I had always loved the art of beautiful handwriting but it didn’t come so easy as I tried to perfect it. I spent hours upon hours practicing and studying from world wide renowned calligraphers on Instagram and the @handletteredabcs community never let me down! They shared a tremendous amount of calligraphy resources that only helped me further my passion even more! I found myself practicing with every opportunity given and allowing my passion to blossom all while managing a couple of toddlers and an enduring marriage.
Eventually, my joy and passion for calligraphy grew so strong that I couldn’t keep it all to myself. So I created an Instagram to showcase my progress named "Paper and Ink Designs". This account caught the attention of family and friends who began to ask about creating decorative pieces for their personal and professional use.
As interest for my calligraphy grew within social media, my interest in the application of calligraphy grew as well, eventually landing me at the amazing facility called the “TechShop”. This industrial warehouse allowed me to connect with like-minded creators and innovators. This arena filled with artists, welders, craftsman, software designers, ambitious "hipsters" and everyone in between was where everything changed. The TechShop housed 3 laser cutters that served as catalysts to my  inspiration as well as the evolution of "Paper and Ink Designs" to the current Deco Ink Designs. Deco is short for Decor that started with the love of Ink and pen for the final design and art piece! So Deco Ink felt so right after I was able to create a 3D design and model of a handlettered laser cut name sign that read “Sarah”!
With the new tools available, Deco Ink began to gain more notoriety amongst calligraphers as well as within the wedding and decor industry. This also emboldened the creativity and aspiration to understand more technology and develop more connections with others to help Deco Ink create products to suit the want or need of any business, party or individual.
Deco Ink experienced a significant hurdle when the TechShop was un-expectantly closed down in November of 2017 as many of its resources were lost to the public and their loyal members. I seriously thought that’s it. That was a short lived dream. I was devastated to say the least.  
However, God had other plans. He sure answers prayers and puts the right people in your life at the right time! You see earlier that year my tech savvy father in law had gifted me an outdated yet perfectly upgraded Apple computer with an attached sketch pad that digitally made my calligraphy appear on the screen! He was THE Tech Guy everyone loved!! It was such a neat gift and a cool experience. Not only did my father in law know just how excited I was about calligraphy and technology, he also wanted me to succeed!! Well, I sure miss him now and could totally use his wisdom and tech savvy brain but I’m grateful he left behind an amazing son I get to call my husband. My father in law passed away in April of 2017. After his passing and the closing of the techshop that year my heart was torn. We were mourning the loss of my father in law as well as the loss of a passion that was highly encouraged by him. I just couldn’t give it up so quickly 
2017 remains a tough year but it sure taught me something. “If there’s a will, there’s a way!” 
At the end of 2017, a few days before my birthday/Christmas my husband announced that he too wanted to help me further my passion and career just like his father had done earlier that year. He announced his decision of a life changing investment to purchase a laser cutter!!!!!! Wow. I could only think; Gilly, you’re still here. We miss you and I won’t let you down. Today, Deco Ink continues to thrive because of the passion and commitment I have to make a difference in peoples lives as Gilly, his son (my husband) and the entire Bernard family have made a difference in my life!
Today I continue to hand-letter on the company iPad with as much passion for the art as I had the first day I  practiced with a nib, ink and paper! What once started as an interest became a passion and is now a business. But people who know me, know that this truly is my passion and dream AND it wouldn’t be possible without the people that believed in me from day one! 

I’m thankful and grateful for you all and I hope that my blogs, posts and website inspire you to be the most passionate person about the things you love!