The Maker: Kimberly Shrack Of Manayunk Calligraphy
An entire wall in Kimberly Shrack’s home is covered with the lyrics to “Back Home Again in Indiana,” the words scripted in paint, all done freehand. The project was just a fun experiment for Shrack, who keeps busy running her business, Manayunk Calligraphy, a one-woman show based in Irvington. It all started when the former IU art student created a script to use on the envelopes, placecards, and decorations for her wedding—and discovered she was pretty good at it.
Shrack began providing calligraphy for other brides’ special days, as well as hand-lettered art prints, illustrations, and custom orders. At some point, she started thinking bigger—literally—with scripted wall-to-wall murals. They have become so popular that she teamed with East Coast Creative’s Monica Mangin to paint one for Desiree Hartsock, who was on The Bachelorette. The nursery wall, scripted with children’s book passages, was featured in Us Weekly. The murals typically cost around $1,500 and take anywhere from a couple of days to a couple of weeks. The hardest part is measuring and sketching the layout on paper. “I only get one shot at this,” Shrack says. “There’s no room for error.”
Manayunk Calligraphy, named for the artsy Philadelphia neighborhood where it started, is continuing to grow as Shrack works her way into the world of art licensing. So far, no one could have scripted a better beginning: She just came out with a collection of notebooks for Anthropologie.
“Favorite Things” journals, $12 each at Anthropologie (The Fashion Mall, 317-574-0803)