Made in Plano: Butler’s Pantry Calligraphy

Danica Butler always believed that she had the ability to become a successful business owner. Growing up in Plano as the daughter of a successful textile entrepreneur, she says her business sense comes from her father.

Six years ago Danica took a chance. By leaving a stressful job in the automotive industry, she reset the pace and trajectory of her life when she decided to focus on what she loves most, art.

A selection of Butler’s Pantry hand painted cards // photos by Esther Huynh

With a background in the fine arts and a passion for painting, she used her skill and knowledge to develop Butler’s Pantry Calligraphy, a business that specializes in hand painted cards, hand lettered calligraphy prints, custom announcements, wedding calligraphy and illustrated wedding invitations. To create her pieces, she draws inspiration from seasonal interior design trends.

Examples of Danica’s work from her Butler’s Pantry Instagram page

Danica was motivated to be in charge of her own destiny. She set a schedule, dedicating hours every day to crafting a unique collection of painted cards and challenging herself to learn a new skill. “With my father’s encouragement and coaching, I made a schedule to work seven hours every day getting designs prepared and setting up my website. My original intent was to only create painted cards but I wanted to encourage people to use me for their wedding invitations and thought addressing envelopes would be a good add-on service,” said Danica.

She began searching for calligraphy classes to learn the fundamentals. To her surprise, there were no classes offering instruction in modern hand lettering. “I had never done calligraphy before then, and there really weren’t any classes to take. It was then that I decided to buy the supplies and to teach myself.”

Butler’s Pantry retail space in Marketplace Boutiques

Butler’s Pantry Calligraphy operates primarily through a website and in a brick and mortar location, Marketplace Boutiques in north Plano. “My dream was to be in retail. It’s truly unique for a calligrapher to have retail space,” says Danica.

Typically, artists choose to create either illustrations or calligraphy, rarely do they create both. Danica enjoys creating both. And with the majority of her work generated through custom order requests, particularly from brides or mothers-to-be, this allows her to give clients an array of options for their special occasion.

A participant practicing her letters in one of Danica’s beginner calligraphy classes

Now that calligraphy is her full-time job, Danica teaches others her craft. The calligraphy classes she holds at her retail location are in high demand. “Having retail space has lead to me offering classes. Individuals with no calligraphy skills can take a two-hour class to learn the basics,” said Danica. “Recently I started offering advanced classes for those who want to continue to learn. Advanced classes are project based, so you will leave with a finished project to show off.”

Danica teaching a beginner’s calligraphy class at Marketplace Boutiques

Pursuing a career in the arts hasn’t been easy for Danica, but she stuck to her plan rather than listening to nay-sayers. “The longer I am in business, the freer my art becomes,” said Danica. “And I am becoming more confident in my style.”

Butler's Pantry Website > Butler's Pantry Instagram >
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