In 2015, I spent 3 months riding a motorcycle around the US to study calligraphic writing manuals at research libraries. I blogged about my travels in While traveling, I stumbled upon two sets of spelling alphabets in the Cotsen Collection at Princeton’s Firestone library. While not writing manuals, the didactic kinesthetic lure was too strong to resist. I had to play with them. 


Having played with the ivory disks, I was determined to make some. I wanted to make a set to play with as well as a set to print with. While the type sorts are offered separately, these poker chip like wooden disks are fun to play with and arrange into words. The letters are laser etched into end-grain maple, with the burn of the laser as coloring. 


The set of 53 pieces includes upper and lower case letters and an ampersand. 

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