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Meet Katrina Centeno-Nguyen of Calligraphy Katrina in Pasadena

Today we’d like to introduce you to Katrina Centeno-Nguyen.

Katrina, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
To be completely honest, I never thought that my everyday handwriting would set me on the path where I am today. I was in culinary school at the time, with dreams of being a chef, when a friend saw me writing a grocery list one day and asked me to address her wedding envelopes. I thought it would be a good idea to earn extra money as an allowance while in school. With a mere ten dollars, I bought a few envelopes and a couple of nicer gel pens. From there, I started receiving inquiries from the simple photos I took. This was almost 11 years ago. Fast forward to 10 years later, and we now have our own merchandise line and rental division!

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
There is no such thing as a smooth road and even now, with many years in, we still face challenges. I feel that they just evolve as our company gets bigger overtime but we have challenges nonetheless. The artistry is constantly evolving but it is not the problem, only the learning process. Most people don’t realize that the logistical side of the business has been the rollercoaster ride. As someone who is a workaholic, maintaining personal time is also a struggle.

So, let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Calligraphy Katrina story. Tell us more about the business.
Calligraphy Katrina started as a calligraphy firm that specializes in hand lettering and creative services on paper collateral for wedding, corporate, and social events. It has since evolved to making artwork on different medium with the specialty in mirrors, wood, chalkboards, and natural/stone materials such as: leaves, agates, and marble. In 2012, Katrina started purchasing and building mirrors, boards, acrylic, and wood to build the company’s extension, Calligraphy Katrina Rentals. While it is still very small and not a traditional rental company, it is the first and only one of its kind that offers ready-to-use signage with hand lettering for any occasion. Our repertoire now includes stationery design and merchandise with the emphasis on Katrina’s hand lettering and lifestyle.

With the rental division, outstanding clientele, and years of experience setting her apart, Katrina has gained more attention for her speed and accuracy–which have been viewed numerous times on social media. Her “no time-lapsed” videos, where she showcases her writing on different medium within 60 seconds, have even garnered her the moniker “Queen of Mirrors” as well as a healthy global following.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
Katrina has always been a firm believer of “Everything happens for a reason” but her daily mantra also includes, “You have to get it done and you have to do it ethically”. As a spiritual person, she lives her life according to the will of God with a ton of dedication and passion for work. Even if things go awry, she believes that there is a sole purpose for learning from mistakes that she uses for fuel as a person and business owner.


  • Envelope Addressing starts at $2.75
  • Mirror Seating Charts starts at $4 per set and Poster-size Signage starts at $50

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