It's all about the written word...

Celebrating three years in publication. Thank you for visiting often!

Friday, December 31, 2010

William Henry at the Golden Globes

A limited edition of just 25 pieces, the Golden Globe 810 from William Henry is hand-crafted at the brand’s Oregon Studio. The barrel is crafted from ebony wood, with titanium and ebonite accents. The cap is built from ebonite, with titanium, mokume gane and sterling silver accents. The cap ring is hand engraved and inlaid with 24-karat gold, and the sculptural stainless steel spring-loaded clip features an inlaid diamond. This convertible pen may be used as a fountain pen with an 18-karat gold nib (and cartridge or converter filling system) or a rollerball. Offered to presenters and award nominees at the 2011 Golden Globe Awards, the pen is priced at $2,000. It comes in a wood presentation case.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

All about Bruce Lee..

Master of martial arts, Bruce Lee, is paid homage by the newest pen from THINK. Each pen features a red cap adorned with a golden dragon clip, and the trademarked Bruce Lee symbol atop the pen is complemented by the golden cap band with his name in raised lettering. This is a limited edition of 888 fountain pens, each with a medium nib, and 888 rollerball pens. The fountain pen is priced at $315, and the rollerball is priced at $295.

© Bruce Lee Enterprises, LLC.  All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

In a pear tree...

The Pear Tree Pen Company, an online retailer of pens, inks and accessories, just launched its own line of luxury writing instruments. Its first, The Perdice Bradford Limited Edition fountain pen, is handmade in the US by Brian Gray of the Edison Pen Company. James Partridge, owner of Pear Tree, designed the pen with the helpful assist of Gray. It is crafted from Sheaffer rod stock from their Balance II series: Crimson Glow, Amber Glow, Cobalt Glow, Jade and Tiger Eye. I received one in Jade to test for this review, and I must say that I was very impressed, but not surprised. The pen is up to the rigorous standards of Edison, which means that it is perfectly shaped and balanced, the threading is flawless, and the material--for which I guess we should thank Sheaffer--is gorgeous. The shape is reminiscent of the Waterman Hundred Year Pen, though the size is more like the Deluxe model. The Jade is a clear and vibrant green with pearly flecks, and the other colors--though I only saw them in photos--look equally beautiful. In keeping with the overall minimalist design of the pen, the only marking on the barrel is the imprint "Perdice Bradford" with the edition number and a dot code signifying the material within the series. So, too, the clip is unadorned--springy yet sturdy. The pen features an 18-karat Edison nib: the one I tested was "Medium," and it was smooth with a bit of flex; "Fine" and "Broad" sizes are also available. There is a very limited number of pens being produced: Ten in Amber, Cobalt and Tiger, 12 in Crimson and eight in Jade, each priced at $325. A final and very interesting note about the name: "Perdice" is Italian for pear, and Bradford, of course, is a type of pear. I like the Perdice Bradford...a lot.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010


The Fireworks limited edition maki-e fountain pen from Pelikan depicts an experience of a Japanese fireworks display in its rendering of an orange Kiku-mono (peony) on the cap and multiple Botan-mono (chysanthemums) along the length of the barrel. Sprinkled gold and mother-of-pearl complete the design. The Pelikan logo is on the crown, along with the limited edition number and the artist's signature. Just 88 fountain pens are available, each priced at $3,600. The pen comes in a wood presentation case. The fountain pen nib is 18-karat gold.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Henry Simpole for Onoto

The new Onoto Overlay No. 1, beautifully created by Henry Simpole for the British-born Onoto, is available with a sterling silver, gilded silver and 18 karat gold overlay, creating a stunning counterpoint to the black pen body beneath. And if you look closely, you'll see the letters "O-N-O-T-O" ingeniously woven into the filigree design. Also within the design is an oval cartouche which may be used for engraving up to five characters. The rhodium plated 18-karat gold nib may be specially ground to fit one's preferences. The Onoto Overlay No 1 is being issued in small limited editions (500 in sterling silver, 250 in gilded silver and 50 in solid gold), so an early reservation is suggested. Prices range from $1,050 to $4,125.

Friday, December 17, 2010

The 2011 Stylus Pen Annual Is Here!

The long-anticipated 2011 Stylus Pen Annual is hot off the press and making its way to Fine Life Media's Connecticut warehouse. There are executive privileges: I received my advance copy a couple of weeks ago, and I must say it is a great book. All the major pen brands are included, but I did do a bit of fine tuning this year, leaving out a few of the smaller brands or those that are not distributed widely, or at all, in the US. There is contact info for all of them, however. Also included this year are some very insightful interviews with the principal players in the pen industry. I sent each a list of questions, and each responded in his or her own fashion. Very little editing was done, and I am sure you will be fascinated--as I was--by their candor. Also new this year is a group of articles geared toward both classic and new pen collectors by some of your favorite authors: Richard Binder, Paul Erano, David Isaacson and Ron Zorn, as well as a wonderful essay by Jeff Bohn.
All in all, this year's Annual is a darn good read, and it will be referred to again and again as a comprehensive annual guide to pens. Send me your comments after you receive your copy, and I will include them as I am able in a future marketing package--with credit to you. All who comment will be put in a drawing to win a pen.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

'Tis the season to consider the Post

Gate City's New Postal Reservoir Pen pays homage to the Postal Pen Company of yore (1920s). It is made using the original Postal design, and it offers the best of both worlds: the great usability and huge ink capacity of the original Postal along with the durability and practicality of modern acrylic resins. It also features a transparent barrel to give you a view of the ink supply. The pen is available in three color combinations and two sizes: Junior (427/32" capped, 63/8" posted), 2.4 ml ink capacity; and Senior (511/16" capped, 73/8" posted), 3.2 ml ink capacity. Having personally seen and held the pen, I can attest to its flawless finish and quality construction--and it writes well, too. Imagine that. 

The original Postal Pens were sold only through the mail, so this time of year seems especially fitting to commemorate the company. And the New Postal Reservoir Pen would be perfect to write your holiday greetings.

Monday, December 13, 2010

To mail or not to mail...

Traditionally, the holiday season is a time to send greetings in the form of cards and letters to our family members and friends. But with the proliferation of technology, particularly e-cards and email, snail mail is down. “Our volume for 2010 is projected to be approximately 167 billion pieces, a decline of approximately 10 billion pieces from last year’s total,” says Joseph Corbett, chief financial officer and executive vice president of the United States Postal Service. The state of the economy certainly hasn't helped, with more people spending less money on cards and postage. But what about pen aficionados? Will we readily forego the pen? I, for one, sent cards with handwritten notes in each, albeit fewer than in years past. Please take my poll and let us know your holiday mailing habits. 

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The new Ceramic Tornado

Newest from Retro 51 is the Ceramic Tornado ballpoint, the latest rendition in the popular Tornado line first introduced several years ago. This limited and numbered edition, available in brown or white ceramic, has rose gold colored trim and retails for $250. The pen is packaged in a great-looking black lacquer box.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

The M-4 Magnet Necklace Pen

New from Franklin-Christoph, the M-4 Magnet Necklace Pen pen features an attractive clasped silk cord. The ballpoint pen uses a Parker-style Piper Ultra-Glide 1000 refill, and the cap attaches to the barrel with a magnet feature. The pen is available in black or yellow with rhodium trim ($47.20) or engraved sterling silver with a 2mm Swarovski "sapphire" ($77.20). Each pen has a lifetime warranty and comes in an attractive gift box. These prices are for a limited time only. I saw the new pens for the first time about a month ago, and they are well balanced and well constructed. They are also a perfect size for quick retrieval for note taking at about 4.25 inches in length. The M-4 Magnet Necklace Pen may be purchased directly from Franklin-Christoph.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

The Christmas Giant

Writer, illustrator, storyteller and pen lover, Steve Light is introducing his latest book, The Christmas Giant, in time for the holidays. The colorful 32-page hardcover book tells the story of Humphrey the giant and Leetree, his elfin best friend. Together they make wrapping paper for Santa's presents, but this year, the two have been tasked to grow a Christmas tree. Creative thinking and some clever recycling help save the day when disaster strikes. The book is perfect for kids of all ages, but is primarily targeted at 3- to 6-year-olds. It is priced at $15.99; find more information from the book's publisher, CandlewickI bought a few copies as gifts, and Steve was kind enough to sign one for the newest member of my family when I saw him recently in NYC. I am delighted, since it is truly a beautiful book that will warm your heart.