Sunday, 30 October 2016

M&G Writing Creativity

An interesting box of pencils bought from Penfax in Hexham, Yorkshire.

They were very cheap - £4 for a box of 12, but surprisingly good quality and design. I love the understated colours, and the matt finish.  They write nicely as well.

M&G is a large Chinese stationery manufacturer, I think these pencils are available only in the UK. I have never seen them before.

Thursday, 15 September 2016

more random eBay pencils

My favourite here - and definitely the most interesting, I think, is the Wolff's Pencil - Wolff's SELECTED Spanish Granite. 
Spanish Graphite ?  Was that a thing?  Cumberland Graphite, yes, Siberian Graphite - of course - but Spanish Graphite ? 

Thursday, 8 September 2016

eBay purchases - Copying Pencils

A good haul on eBay this month : a very impressive set of Copying Pencils

A lot of pencils there that I haven't seen before, I am very pleased with these.
The one that intrigues me most is the purple/black Staedtler Tradition -- I have never before seen a Tradition that doesn't bear the familiar black/red colour schemes.  I checked Bob Truby and was satisfied to see that he doesn't have one

Thursday, 1 September 2016

Yes, but what's that pencil he is holding ....

I came across this picture in a random article, and all I can think of is : what is that pencil he's holding?  And what's the one on the desk
I have an idea. ...

Thursday, 25 August 2016

Cheap Pencils

From a corner shop in Wimbledon, some plain cheap pencils.

They aren't much to look at - or to write with - but how can a pencil collector eschew the cheap or the quotidien.  Such are the stuff of of a pencil collection.

Thursday, 18 August 2016

eBay purchase - Harris Pencils of Elstree Industrial 2020 Empire

A tidy eBay purchase .

After these arrived I googled Harris Pencils Elstree to see what I could find out about this mysterious firm.

The first hit is the eBay listing for this item
The second, and last, hit is to my own, older, website.  Seems like I must already have at least one Harris pencil!  I wonder if it is the same as these.

Thursday, 11 August 2016

Boxed - L&C Hardtmuth - Mephisto 73

 There are many, many varieties of Mephisto pencil. These are not the finest, the printing is a little blurred, but the colour is nice.  Considering the ornate, old-fashioned design of the pencil, the box is surprisingly plain and modern.  Different designer I'd say.

Thursday, 4 August 2016

Boxed - Itoya Schools

Very plain design

Thursday, 28 July 2016

Boxed - Prestige Quality Pencil

I thought I would start a series of posts featuring boxed pencils.
Most of the pencils in my collection are, naturally, single pencils, the boxes long gone. But of course I do have many boxes of 12 as well.

When I have a box of 12 I am always tempted to call it one pencil, with 11 spares. But then common sense prevails and I realise I need to keep the set together.

Is Prestige even a make?  Or is it just a random brand name stamped on a supermarket pencil.

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Pencil Pot

Inspired by Bleistift's Pencil Pot of the Month series, he's my pencil pot of the .... well, here's my pencil pot.  This handsome object sits on my desk at work.

 It's a shiny steel affair.
And here are the pencils that are in in - all well used

an Apsara Platinum EXTRA-DARK - very soft lead - and a novelty left-handed pencil.  (I know that my readers (cough), they will understand!

Thursday, 14 July 2016

L&C Hardtmuth purchases

These are the Hardtmuths that I bought in Paris - a closer look at the six of them together.

They make a nice set -- Hardtmuth always make a very well presented pencils, the lacquer is good, the lettering accurate.

I sense a Japanese influence in the newest pencil here- the Toisin D'Or.  It looks like a Tombow. It's a very solid pencil, but I have to say that the typeface is much less attractive and less distinctive than in the older models.

Thursday, 7 July 2016

A smart stationery shop in Paris

While in Paris I didn't confine myself to the flea markets, I also visited a chic little shop off Rue St Hororé,  attracted by this display in the window
 A set of Hardmuth Toisin D'Or, in a leather case -- for the pretty good price of €40.
Inside the shop they had a display of vintage pencils - Ticonderoga's Mikados and others.  I didn't get a photo though.

They had a good selection of pencils - this is what I bought.

AG Spalding make pens, I haven't seen any pencils before - I think they probably belong in the 'advertising' category rather than counting as a brand name pencil.

Thursday, 30 June 2016


I found these four pencils lurking in my local stationery shop.  I haven't seen NATARAJ before, design obviously influenced by Staedtler Tradition.

It's odd how some shops will occasionally stock something different.

Thursday, 23 June 2016

Ambidextrous Pencils

So these pencils that I found in Paris are unusual in one respect..
They are ambidextrous - ie both left-handed and right-handed.
This is the say the text on one face of the pencil runs from tip to head (right-handed), but rotate the pencil and the text on the opposite face runs from head to tip (left-handed).  I don't recall seeing any pencils like that before - anyone got any other examples?

Thursday, 16 June 2016

The flea markets of Paris

In Paris for a weekend I headed to the flea markets of St Ouen.  I have been there before, many years ago at which time I found several stalls with old pencils, and bought around fifty pencils.
This year I wasn't so lucky - in general there were more antiques and less junk, and I found only one stall selling pencils.  Here's what I bought

The BERGER pencils (of which more later), and Conté ALASKA were the 6 for €5 pot, all the others were 3 for €1.  In other words pretty cheap, and great to find some pencils entirely new to me.

Thursday, 9 June 2016

L.i C.Hardtmuth CYKLOP 1332

Made Poland
Orange-Yellow in colour, with sharp edges

Thursday, 2 June 2016

JP Alibert's Graphite Mine in Siberia

Here's one of my favourite pencils - an old A.W. Faber pencil, containing graphite from the famous mine established in Siberia by Jean-Pierre Alibert.
I guess the pencil is nineteenth century. The edges are very sharp and it's in good condition.  I have two of them

Thursday, 26 May 2016

Blue Pencils

If yellow is far and away the most popular colour for brand name writing pencils --  is blue the least popular ?  Sorting out an old box of pencils, found in the attic, completely forgotten, here are all the blue pencils I found.
Lots of Russian pencils !  Perhaps blue is more popular there. 
A Conte pencil called Indiana  -  is blue the colour of that state?

Saturday, 21 May 2016

Clearing Out the Attic

Clearing out the attic I am finding boxes and boxes of pencils...   perhaps I'll resume posting to this blog again