Meet Sarah

Born and raised in Central New York, Sarah Dustin attended Marist College (Poughkeepsie, NY), briefly wandered to the beaches in Southern Maine upon graduating with her Masters Degree, and returned to Central New York in 2009. Sarah established a career in higher education and became a passionate advocate to help young people pursue their dreams. It was this work that helped her reach the decision to pursue her own dream - to be a professional calligrapher and letterist.  She is incredibly grateful to meet the wonderful clients and students who have extraordinary visions, big and small, and everything in between.

How the Adventure Began...

Like most love stories, my story with calligraphy and hand-lettering was somewhat unexpected. In 2012, my now husband proposed, and of course, I said yes. Little did I know that many late-night Pinterest "pins" later, I'd find myself determined to teach myself the art of calligraphy and hand-lettering. It was a rabbit hole that I hadn't expected to fall into. 

" You can't connect the dots looking forward, you can only connect them  looking backwards. You have to trust that the dots will somehow connect  in your future. You have to trust in something - your gut, destiny,  life, karma, whatever - because believing that the dots will connect  down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart, even  when it leads you off the well-worn path, and that will make all the  difference."  -Steve Jobs (describing his own love affair with calligraphy).

Growing up, I admired my mother's penmanship, in addition to her career at a local publishing company. The  typefaces, the colors, and scent of inks (the latter being much to my mother's dismay) enchanted me with curiosity. I tinkered with prints and scripts, and ultimately changed my signature at least a dozen times (definitely an under-estimate) before settling on just the right autograph. 

Flash forward to 2012 - Pinterest was somewhat new and it wasn't yet possible to click on a photo to find its source. With the lofty idea to teach myself, I experimented with an assortment of tools and mediums. Alas, my very first signs made their debut at our 2014 wedding. At the time, I thought "good enough," thinking I'd tuck my pens away and go about married life. Little did I know, a dream I didn't even know existed had been sparked.

During the wedding, our photographer and dear friend (shoutout to Harlow Bliss Photography!) nonchalantly suggested that *this* could be a business. This moment, my friends, is when the seed was planted. 

Later that year, I was invited to a Trunk Show at the Utica Public Library, and despite a very limited inventory and a naive forecast of what was to come, I showed up. I've learned "showing up" can make all the difference.

The Adirondack Ink has since grown beyond my wildest dreams and I am excited to start this new chapter as I take my little business on full-time, full-throttle. I am incredibly grateful and humbled by the support of my small but mighty community and am blessed to work with the very best clients I could ever ask for.