It's all about the written word...

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

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Yes, it's still 2011...

In 2006 Conway Stewart launched the Elegance series consisting of several limited editions, each created with unique designs. The Deco Diamond was the first of this new series, followed by the Westminster Green, Westminster Teal, Elizabeth Garret Anderson, the Elements Series, Oliver Cromwell, Plumage Grey, Mandarin Yellow Plumage and the Aztec. Each design of the Elegance series is handcrafted at the Conway Stewart factory in Devon, England, from rods of solid sterling silver, carefully engraved with intricate patterns and accented with a hand-applied enamel by award winning craftsman Robert Glover. Conway Stewart very recently launched the Elegance Pen of the Year 2011, a special design that was limited to just 25 pieces in a choice of fountain pen or rollerball. The seasonal design features a laurel motif on the cap band while the gently flowing engraved enamel panels in red are highlighted with a band of evergreen-colored engraved inserts on the cap and the barrel. Here's a look, but, alas, it's sold out.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Lifetime warranty

According to the December 20 Mail Online, a 78-year-old British woman visited her doctor complaining of pain and weight loss. After a series of tests, it was discovered that the source of her trouble was a felt-tip marker she'd accidentally swallowed 25 years earlier while "poking her tonsils." The pen was clearly visible on a CT scan, and her team of doctors decided that it should be removed from her stomach, where it had sat for over two decades. The woman is recovering nicely. The marker? It still writes.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

A little bit of soul

Another Christmas is upon us, and cards and letters abound. I think I've gotten just about every type of holiday card this year: e-cards, "dear all" letter reprints, photo cards, regular cards (with and without pre-printed signatures), texts and handwritten letters--and I even got a chocolate greeting card, a first. I'm sure it's not hard to guess which I prefer the most (no, it's not the chocolate), though I'm so grateful for them all. The handwritten notes are tops on my list, and while it certainly has a lot to do with my love of pens, that's not the sum of it. More likely it's because I feel like I'm getting a tiny and personal gift with each greeting: someone took the time to write and wish me well during this well-wishing time of year. Life, it seems, is becoming more and more about efficiency at the expense of the soul. Yes, it is much easier to mail en masse, email or even text a greeting, but the result is a bit austere. I prefer a simple straight-from-the heart handwritten line or two with all the messiness and character that goes with real ink on real paper. As I said, it's like receiving a very intimate little present. And I'm all about the presents. Happy holidays to you and yours. 

Friday, December 23, 2011

Alfred Hitchcock from Montblanc

Montblanc is introducing the Alfred Hitchcock collection, comprising two editions, each featuring iconography from Hitchcock's movies and career: the Limited Edition 3000 and the Limited Edition 80. The former, available as a fountain pen ($3,745) or rollerball ($3,195), has sterling silver appointments and 53 marks on the section symbolizing every movie Hitchcock directed during his career, which spanned nearly six decades. There are 3,000 146-size fountain pens and 3,000 rollerballs available in this edition. The Limited Edition 80 (pictured) has white gold appointments and features a dramatic swirling "vertigo" effect in black lacquer enhanced with blood red. In addition, the "Psycho" knife clip is set with diamonds. Just 80 fountain pens are available; price available upon request.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Top ten reasons to buy a pen as a holiday gift!

A good pen makes the perfect gift because...

10.    You can find a good pen in any price range.
  9.    No need to worry about buying the right size (but pay attention to pen circumference and hand size).
  8.    A good pen works for both genders.
  7.    A good pen will last forever...or almost.
  6.    There's a fine pen for every taste--conservative or flashy, monochromatic or colorful.
  5.    Most good pens come in their own little box, ready for wrapping.
  4.    Pens are both luxurious and functional.
  3.    If purchased from a reputable retailer, a pen can be returned or exchanged with no hassle.
  2.    A pen is personal without being too intimate, perfect for a special someone or a business associate.

Monday, December 19, 2011

One-Touch Camouflage

Monteverde is adding yet another version of its popular One-Touch writing instrument, the combo ballpoint/stylus it introduced earlier this year. The soft-point stylus may be used on your iPad or iPhone or any other type of touch screen. This retractable pen currently comes in a variety of colors, and early next year Monteverde will be introducing a camouflage style. No one ever saw it coming...

Friday, December 16, 2011

New from Edelberg

The Gemino collection, from Edelberg, is a collaboration between BlackOut Concept and Edelberg--both Swiss brands. Based in Geneva, BlackOut Concept is an innovative brand that works with a specially formulated black PVD coating used on luxury-brand watches. The skull and crossbones is its logo. Shown is the Edelberg Sloop Teskio Gemino_02, a limited edition of 99 pieces in matte and 99 pieces in glossy coating. Each is priced at $1,390.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Writing is just plain better

See what Kevin Purdy has to say about why "writing things down, with your actual hands, is just plain better at getting you to remember and execute good ideas." Read more.... 

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Capri Night & Day from Delta

The Capri Night & Day collection from Delta welcomes two new versions: the Capri Night and Capri Day. The former offers a combination of ivory resin with a natural turquoise stone in the cap crown. Capri Day offers a combination of dark blue resin with a natural coral button on the cap crown. The pens are made of resin, and each is offered as a fountain pen, rollerball or ballpoint. The fountain pen is priced at $250.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Montegrappa's UAE National Day Pen

The star-studded Chequered Flag Ball returned to Abu Dhabi on November 11, as celebrity guests and members of Abu Dhabi society kicked off a weekend of glitz, glamour and Formula 1. Hosted by British TV personality Kirsty Gallacher, the elegant black-tie ball, now in its third year, took place at the St. Regis Hotel Saadiyat Island Resort. British soul singer Mica Paris and former F1 team owner Eddie Jordan also took to the stage as headline acts for the glittering evening of  entertainment. Montegrappa was this year's Platinum Sponsor, and the evening was attended by the Montegrappa Middle East team, Montegrappa CEO, Giuseppe Aquila, who flew in specially for the occasion, and Abdullah Al Sayegh, from Al Sayegh Jewellery, Montegrappa's retail partner for Abu Dhabi. Although the event took place on the eleventh day of the eleventh month of 2011, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) had a more illustrious date, the second of December 2011, when the country celebrated its fortieth Anniversary since unification of the seven Emirates in 1971. This special occasion was marked by the first public unveiling of Montegrappa's UAE National Day pen, a Limited Edition pen celebrating the fortieth anniversary of the unification of the UAE. One of the Limited Edition National Day pens, appropriately, number 1111 (out of 1971), was sold at auction over the course of the evening with funds raised being given to the Christina Noble Children's Foundation, an international charity organization dedicated to serving underprivileged children in Asia. The pen raised 8,500 Dirhams (equivalent to about $2,500) for this cause, and the pen was taken home by the winning bidder. 

Friday, December 2, 2011

Craig Robins speaks onstage at Montblanc Presents The Montblanc De La Culture Arts Patronage Award
at the Moore Building on December 1, 2011, in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Daniele Venturelli/Getty Images for Montblanc)
On December 1, Montblanc honored Craig Robins, longtime supporter of art, design and culture, in the twentieth anniversary year of the Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage Awards. The award was presented by Pharrell Williams at a gala event in the Miami Design District during Miami Beach’s celebrated Art Basel show in the company of numerous design and fashion stars. There was also a performance by French top band Yelle and a live art piece created by Jona CerwinskieRobins joined a prestigious list of award winners from the 12 participating countries in this anniversary year including: Yoko Ono (Japan), His Royal Highness, The Prince of Wales (United Kingdom), Her Majesty Queen Sofia (Spain), Liao Chang Yong (China), Yoyo Maeght (France), Harald Falckenberg (Germany), Chung King Fai (Hong Kong), Andree Ruth Shammah (Italy), Young Dal Yoon (Korea), Aurelio Lopez Rocha (Mexico), and Valery Gergiev (Russia). Robins was chosen by an international jury in honor and recognition of his role support of art, architecture, design and culture in civic, institutional, educational and commercial contexts, as well as his leadership in the redevelopment and revitalization of South Beach, the Miami Design District and other projects instrumental in improving the lives of the city’s residents. A native of Miami Beach, Robins has been at the forefront of city’s cultural and architectural resurgence for more than 25 years. The Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage Award has celebrated the work of outstanding private patrons of the arts throughout the world each year since 1992.