AKIM CURSIVE is one of my favorite styles of monoline lettering.  For those of you who don’t know what that means, monoline, is a lettering that is done with regular style of pens, pencils, or markers thus no thick and thin lines all the same width.  So no special tools required and while there are many monolines out there this particular one is my absolute favorite. The reason is that because of the nature of it, no two people have the exact same look.  What happens with this lettering is that your OWN PERSONAL  lettering finds its way into this style and so makes each person’s individual.  It is not based on a FORMAL calligraphic style but was developed by a German calligrapher by the name of HANS-JOACHIM BURGERT.  He published an article where he was discussing cursive lettering styles. I received an envelope in an envelope exchange from BEV ALLEN of British Columbia.  I was so excited with the look of it that I wrote to her and asked for more information on it and she sent me the article and a complete set of letters.   What I am publishing here is my version of his letters.  I wanted it to look good on the Blog so I did it on a border paper then got to thinking that it might be hard for you to download and print a copy so I am also giving you a version on paper without the border.  You should be able to right click the one below then click then click on + and it will enlarge and then you should be able to print full size.   If you can’t get it then send me a comment and ask me to e mail it to you. ( this is my problem and I will try to get it worked out before I send any more of my own scans.)

At the time, I was teaching lots of monoline classes at various stamp and scrapbooking stores.  And this script was usually a favorite.  I think the reason that I liked it so much is that it reminded me of SHORTHAND and I have always liked that the look, texture and rhythm of shorthand was lovely.  I also liked the feel of it with regular formal letters such as NEULAND. ( a script I’ll share with you at a later date. ) The fact that you can use any type of pen or pencil or colored pencil or even crayon and some calligraphers have even adapted it to use with a chisel nib.(formal calligraphy nib).

I mentioned on the exemplar (term used to describe the example of the letters). That the letters that truly appealed to me were the lower case letter not the capitals.  But I did give them both to you because I know that some of you will not be able to break away from the habit of using Capitals and frankly some of the people you may send to ( I use this a lot on Envelopes) may not appreciate it if you write their name and don’t use a Capital…again for me I generally still use the lower case letter form but write it bigger.  I also like the fact that its a little difficult to read and you may find that you will adjust a few of the more difficult forms so that they do read easier.  This is perfectly fine and allowing your own handwriting to influence some of the letters is fine also..the most important aspect to this script is that it is stretched.  As you can see especially the m, n , h and the s, as well as the u, v, w and y.  The S is the trickiest of the letters because in general we make our letters starting at the top of the letter and pulling down.  With the S in this alphabet you will need to start at the bottom of the letter and pull UP and somewhat diagonal. You don’t want it laying all the way down but you also don’t want it standing perfectly up right and vertical. The T is also going to give a lot people a problem. Bergert’s version and mine is short downstroke then follow the line about half way back up and flip out to left side, it is not a complete crossbar but if that bothers you then make a complete crossbar.  Just a few other hints, I like to use a fine line pen ( my current favorite is aPILOT G2 0.38 and often they are available at Walmart and almost always at Staples this site is Staples and shows buying a dozen but you don’t have to buy that many and .05 is fine as well as the 07.  See what works best for you.) but as I said you can use any size, roller ball, gel pen, even fountain pen. Think that covers most of hints I wanted to share, I know this is not the same as taking a class but you might surprise yourself with your ability.

I would be glad to answer any questions you might have and I would absolutely love it if you sent me a copy of any writing that you did .. you don’t have to send your whole alphabet just a sentence or a name or quote that you may have written or any practice you might have done.  That reminds me of two more hints.

Whenever you are learning a new script…only write each letter 3 times then move on even if you don’t have that letter down or it doesn’t look right or look  like the exemplar then go back to it later but MOVE ON...you don’t want to teach your hand to do it wrong .  If you need to trace the letter off the exemplar to get the feel of how to do move your hand to make the letter.  Also once you get the feel for letters START MAKING WORDS...only with words will you be able to feel the spacing, this doesn’t mean you have to do a quote write whatever is in your head, grocery list, names, rhyming words etc.. don’t make it too hard on yourself .

You can e mail me copies of your work and let me know if I can put them on the blog with your name. Now don’t freak at that, its not like I am putting you out there naked and I can leave your name off if you want, but sharing is what this is all about.  

this is a card of mine. Akim with Bone letters .

And the on the right was a card sent to me by Adelaide Dunklee.  As always thanks for stopping by.






  1. Hi Kath! I think of you often and today decided to see if you were on facebook. Didn’t find you, but found your blog. Would love to stay in touch.
    Jan Lunsford Taylor, from Centralia

    now divorced and living in Long Beach, California

    • Hey Jan, can’t believe you didn’t find me on Facebook I am there also. Yes, let’s stay in touch. Thanks for writing on my Blog. As you can see its been there short time but not many comments. Good to here from you. Hugs

  2. Hey Kath-
    Found your blog when searching for Akim. I’m doing my LOJ decorated envelopes. Henri Wilson gave a talk a couple of months ago and reminded me of how much I like this hand, but now can’t find my note. I think of you often when using a monoline script. Hope all is well with you.

  3. Hello,
    I was surching on internet for Akim cursive; and found your blog this way.
    I’m from Belgium, and looking for some more information, and how to learn that cursive.
    The alphabet on your blog is already helpful !
    Could you help me to find some more information, or examples of the alpabeth by Hans Joachim Burgert ?
    Thank you in advance !
    Creative greetings,

    • sent you e mail …this address …have things for you but no snail mail to send them… lot to scan and e mail but guess I could …let me know please… still waiting for reply from you,,

  4. Hi Kath! Was interested in learning this script and found your blog. Very informative. And thank you for the push. Will get back to yiu and tell you how it’s going!

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