I try to avoid using this blog as a diary for all the stationery-related goings on in my life. But it's been a pretty big week, and I have some stuff I want to share. Monday: start your engines I spent the day admiring my new BMW 146, and couldn't resist posting about what a … Continue reading Snippets: the week in stationery
Words and time, pens and watches — to me they have the same attraction. I wonder if you readers feel the same? Just as a pen captures and makes real otherwise ephemeral thoughts and ideas, watches pin down the imprecision of time. They're acts of craftsmanship, engineering and heritage, and a visible expression of personal … Continue reading Words and time: a tour of my watch collection
When you're a pen freak like me, you spend as much time organising your stationery (and other hobbies' detritus) as you spend using it. My setup is not fancy. I don't have a huge house, I don't have a dream home office or desk setup. I have a beaten-up Ikea desk and office chair that … Continue reading Behind the scenes: storage, travel and writing desks
I buy a lot of pens. All kinds of brands. All kinds of price ranges. Steel and gold. Fine and broad. From many different pen shops. I assume that most of the time, the pen arrives ready to write. But sometimes the nib lets me down. And that "sometimes" is starting to feel like "too … Continue reading The frustrating pursuit of a functioning nib… is it too much to ask?
I swore to myself: no new pens before Christmas. But (predictably) I failed. The Black Friday discounts got the better of me. I'm undecided how I feel about this ultimately consumerist holiday, and what it means for the small retailers and brands that I try to support. But my actions speak louder than my words. … Continue reading Magnificent seven: Black Friday edition
Last week's seven turned out great. I used every pen heavily, with the exception of the Pelikan M400. At last I managed to gel with the Pilot 823, although it still doesn't feel 'right' to me every time I pick it up. The Montegrappa Extra and Montblanc 1912 proved deliciously smooth for evening journalling; the … Continue reading The magnificent seven: week two
Today I laid my collection out, all together. It didn't fit in my pen drawer. I had to leave three pens out of shot. Left to right: Montblanc 1912, Montblanc 149, Pelikan M805 Ocean Swirl, Pelikan M400 white tortoiseshell, Visconti Wall Street LE, Visconti Homo Sapiens London Fog, Visconti Homo Sapiens, Visconti Van Gogh Room … Continue reading The magnificent seven: week one
I haven't posted a blog since 22nd October, 17 days ago. It's been a busy couple of weeks. At the end of October I took a long weekend with the family down to Fowey Hall in Cornwall. It was a chance to get away and unwind from work. I took just four pens with me: … Continue reading Snippets: epic mail call and more travel
What do you get for the fountain pen lover who has everything? It can be tricky. Your first thought might be... well, a pen. But if they're a hobbyist, they're probably past the 20-quid Parkers and Lamys from your local Rymans, Smiths or Paperchase. And you probably don't want to spend 500 quid buying them … Continue reading The UKFP holiday gift guide 2018
I nearly didn't make it to the London Pen Show this year. After being in my calendar for months, a family situation threatened to derail plans. But I made it — and it was a great show. What was different this year? Well, for me, it was having my six-year-old daughter along. Crazy idea? Well, … Continue reading 2018 London Writing Equipment Show: success!