TL;DR: check out the video review https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xs9db1kEDFE The full story This is an unusual, even special, pen. It features a skeletonised sterling silver overlay on both cap and barrel, created by the late Henry Simpole. Overlay pens are not common nowadays, and to me they are strongly associated with vintage pens: you find overlay pens … Continue reading Onoto Heritage Overlay by Henry Simpole: artistry, at what cost?
As we head towards November, and Remembrance Sunday, for many of us the two World Wars will be on our minds, and the familiar poppy symbol will start to appear on the lapels of our winter coats. Despite this, the events of World War I in particular can seem a little unreal, barely more than … Continue reading Onoto’s The Flanders Pen is a tasteful tribute
I call this product the “pen croissant”. I’m hoping the name sticks. I hope the product sticks too, because I really like it. What we have here is a simple, rustic-feeling case for a single pen, made from thick, soft leather with a single popper closure. It’s available in three colours. I picked the blue, … Continue reading Onoto leather pen roll: a matching case for your Magna
I've dragged my feet about writing this review for a couple of reasons. First, I've published quite a few Onoto reviews this year: the Pinstripes, British Museum, Sequoyah, Spitfire... with this, I'll have covered Onoto more than any other brand. Second, this Blue Stripe Magna #8 is not a standard production pen. I bought it … Continue reading Onoto’s Mammoth Magna #8: masterpiece or mistake?
A 'tribute' pen is a dangerous thing. Look at something like Montegrappa's Apollo 11 moon landing pens: I confess that I quite want one, but nevertheless they come across like cheap toys, even when the top-tier edition costs an eye-watering £6,000. Image credit: Iguanasell It's not just Montegrappa's usual over-the-top style, either. Platinum and Cross … Continue reading Flying high with the Onoto Spitfire
This pen grabbed me from the first photo I saw of it, and I'm happy to say it's even better in person. After a series of Scottish-themed releases, and after many releases celebrating British luminaries like Nightingale and Churchill, Shakespeare and Dickens, Onoto's release of the American-themed Sequoyah came as a bit of a surprise … Continue reading The mighty Sequoyah from Onoto
A few days ago I started writing a September 'State of the Collection' post. But the scale of the task has overwhelmed me. With more than 20 posts since the August SotC, and at least as many pens in and out... well, I figured nobody would want to read a post that long. But I … Continue reading Benu, cartridges, interviews, queues and more
A reader recently told me by email that, of all their pens, the Onoto Magna would be the one to accompany them to the proverbial desert island. I cannot possibly disagree with their choice. If you were to be stuck with just one pen to write page after page, day after day, year after year, … Continue reading Another look at the Onoto Magna: Victory and Shakespeare pinstripes
Rather than words comes the thought of high windows: The sun-comprehending glass,And beyond it, the deep blue air, that showsNothing, and is nowhere, and is endless.Philip Larkin, High Windows Few pens make me want to quote poetry (especially by my favourite poet). The Onoto Great Court Vitreous Enamel Sterling Silver is one. But let's get something … Continue reading Art and alchemy: The Onoto Great Court Vitreous Enamel
I'll start with my conclusion: the new Onoto plunger filler is not the best or most practical Onoto for most people. But if you love the brand and its history, that may not matter to you at all. Bear with me for a history lesson I've never really done history lessons on this blog — … Continue reading Onoto’s new plunger filler is a blast from the past — for a price