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alchemy calligraphy dc wedding

October 4, 2018



Super excited to share this vendor spotlight on Alchemy Calligraphy & Design! I met Molly this past Spring when I was helping out on a styled shoot in Washington D.C. Immediately I felt connected to Molly’s sweet and funny personality and then her stunning stationery and attention to detail – good lawd this gal is talented! I’m a huge fan of supporting other small business owners and wanted to connect my followers and blog readers with this super talented gal! I’m excited to collab with Alchemy Calligraphy next month on a styled shoot here in the Richmond area – can’t wait to see what goodies Molly is going to come up with!

I “interviewed” Molly a few weeks ago via email (I wish it was in person over coffee or champs but that didn’t happen)… keep reading for 5 things about Alchemy Calligraphy and Design!

1. Who are you/how did you get started? I’m Molly Adamson Gilbane– the creative mind behind Alchemy Calligraphy and Design. I’m originally from Portland, Oregon but currently reside in Washington, District of Columbia with my husband Bobby, 9 month old son Conrad, and our labradoodle Hudson. Though I’ve always been drawn to the creative arts, my background is actually in nursing. I’ve been a registered nurse for the last seven years and have worked in a variety of fields, including a level one trauma emergency room and the cardiac cath lab. I have also spent time as a nurse serving overseas– both in Uganda and Gambia– building schools, painting murals, and providing basic medical care at primary schools and a children’s hospital. These trips fundamentally changed me and I will forever be captivated by the vibrant, resilient souls I encountered.
My interest in calligraphy began in 2015 while planning my own wedding– I fell in love with the art instantly– and purchased my first nib, holder, and pot of ink shortly after tying the knot. What began as a casual hobby– writing pretty quotes for friends and creating place cards for dinner parties– quickly evolved into a full time business. After six months of balancing my nursing career with client projects for Alchemy, I decided to take a leap of faith and pursue my entrepreneurial dream of running Alchemy full time. Now my days are spent as a mama, aspiring calligrapher, artist, and dreamer. The birth of Alchemy created the perfect marriage of my two greatest passions: serving others and creating beauty– which is why 10% of all proceeds from Alchemy go directly to helping those in need– either locally here in DC or abroad. Some days I wake up and still cannot believe I get to do this for a living– it is truly a dream.
2. What’s the meaning behind your business name? Alchemy means “a seemingly magical process of transformation, creation, or combination” which describes my creative process quite perfectly: it involves many elements– creating calligraphy by hand, producing numerous illustrations, then transforming these elements into digital vector images and combining them with various fonts and graphics to create a stunning design that translates beautifully when in print.
3. What services do you provide? Alchemy provides custom and semi-custom wedding stationery– including save the dates, invitation suites, envelope calligraphy, and extras such as custom wax seals, postage stamps, etc. I also provide “day of” calligraphy goods such as ceremony programs, escort and place cards, menus, seating charts, and custom signage. In between weddings, I take on a select number of branding clients– either new businesses looking to develop their brand or companies in need of a total re-brand. 
4. What inspires you in your work? Making an active effort to have designated adventure days with my son has encouraged me to get out of the house and explore– be it a long hike among the beautiful trees in Rock Creek Park or an afternoon stroll through the National Gallery of Art– this city is teeming with a kaleidoscope of cultures, each with their own unique interpretation of our world. I’m a firm believer that there is beauty everywhere– and it is up to us to unplug, get out there, and seek it. These moments are what inspires my work the most.
5. 3 words that describe your style: Organic, Ethereal, Boheme.

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