Posted August 9, 2011 by Karen Doherty
in Editorial, Pens, Paper & People | 7 comments »
I do most of my writing in pencils, especially in my datebook where I have to erase a lot.
I discovered General’s Pencils at the art supply show in Phoenix. Made in Jersey City, NJ, General’s Pencils offers writing and drawing pencils. I ordered two boxes of Semi-Hex to use at the office and home. Even though I am very attached to the #2 Ticonderoga that I have used since grade school, General’s is gradually replacing them. They are smooth to write with, and I like the grey of the line. They also have a good eraser!
But for the life of me, I cannot figure out why a five-generation New Jersey-based company would have a Conestoga wagon on the box! Perhaps it is a 19th c. romantic notion of the pioneering spirit?
Any other General’s fans out there? What kind(s) of pencils do you use to write or doodle?
Read more about General’s here.
Posted June 3, 2011 by Leah Hoffmann
in Cabinet of Curiosities, Pens, Paper & People | 2 comments »
One thing that caught my eye at the National Stationery Show was this amazing brass pencil sharpener. It’s part of a suite of fancy-pants office products made by Yonkers based Star Desk — though I don’t see it on their website — and while it’s not really my style, and I probably couldn’t afford it even if it were, it’s an absolute thing of beauty and very smartly made. The blades grind without effort, and the tray slides in and out smoothly when you need to empty shavings.
Bet it’d make for good conversation in a corporate boardroom…
Posted August 20, 2010 by Leah Hoffmann
in Cabinet of Curiosities, Pens, Paper & People | 3 comments »
Ooh, this looks interesting: the Sharpie liquid pencil. Made from “liquid graphite” and introduced on the company blog earlier this month, it’s been making its way through the Internet at a fairly rapid clip.
The idea, one gathers, is that it’s initially erasable, then becomes permanent with time. How much time is unclear; some sources are saying 24 hours, others give you up to three days. (“But unlike a Sharpie permanent marker, you will always be able to erase it to some degree,” according to a company update.)
The liquid pencil will be available in the US in September, though there’ve already been a couple of sightings at Office Depot. Have you tried it?
Posted August 5, 2010 by Leah Hoffmann
in Beautiful Creations, Cabinet of Curiosities, Pens, Paper & People | 1 comment »
Whoa, this is pretty incredible: the Telegraph has a new picture gallery of Brazilian-born carpenter Dalton Ghetti’s remarkable pencil sculptures. From a boot, a button, and a saw to an entire miniature alphabet, the sculptures themselves are mind blowing. Even more amazing, according to the accompanying text:
Dalton uses three basic tools to make his incredible creations – a razor blade, sewing needle and sculpting knife. He even refuses to use a magnifying glass and has never sold any of his work, only given it away to friends.
Dalton, if you’re reading this — any chance we can be friends? I’ll ply you with Rhodia pencils, and send you all the notebooks you want…
Posted June 7, 2010 by Leah Hoffmann
in Pens, Paper & People, Product Reviews | 9 comments »
Here’s something I didn’t buy in Vienna, though I was tempted: the Faber-Castell Perfect Pencil, reviewed extensively at pencil talk and much discussed elsewhere, as well. The idea is appealingly simple — take a good, high-quality pencil and give it a nice looking cap with an in-built sharpener, and an extender that makes it easier to hold when the pencil’s almost used up.
I’d never seen one in the flesh before, but there were a couple of versions at Mastnak, where I looked. The price seemed to depend on the material of the cap, ranging from a cheap-looking plastic (2-3 Euros, if I remember right) to aluminum (20 Euros and above). I gather there are even more astronomically priced models out there (this one has a platinum brass-plated cap and sells for $210, for example). At any rate, I don’t really use pencils enough to justify the purchase, but it was fun to play with.
Have you tried the perfect pencil?
Posted May 3, 2010 by Leah Hoffmann
in Beautiful Creations, Cabinet of Curiosities, Pens, Paper & People | 3 comments »
I got this 50 million-year-old fossilized fish at the Evolution Store in SoHo as a present for my boyfriend. (It’s apparently genuine, and amazingly, it wasn’t that expensive… there were a lot of fish in the sea, I suppose, or in Wyoming, where it’s from.)
Anyway, the texture made me think it would be perfect for a pencil rubbing, so I got out my Rhodia pencil and some Clairefontaine DCP paper.
What a fun and simple thing! The details didn’t all come through, but you still get a pretty cool perspective on the fish. I may have to go to an art store and do another rubbing in charcoal…
Posted August 4, 2009 by Leah Hoffmann
in Cabinet of Curiosities, Pens, Paper & People | Add your comment »
Today marks the first edition of the Nifty-organized Carnival of Pen, Pencil and Paper, a traveling monthly collection of the best blog posts about notebooks, pens, pencils, and paper products!
Check it out for an offbeat selection of topics and posts, and to find out about writing-related blogs that aren’t in your personal orbit.
For more information about the Carnival and how it works, click here.
Posted April 23, 2009 by Leah Hoffmann
in Pens, Paper & People | 5 comments »
Another impulse buy I made last week at Art Brown is this lovely multicolored pencil from Koh-i-noor. Did anyone else have a pencil like this as a kid? Mine was small and pink, with four different colors of lead stuck together in quarters, like a pie chart, and I cherished it.
In this Koh-i-noor model, the colors are all mottled together, so it’s hard to control which one actually comes out when. Of course, that’s also part of the fun. Here it is on pale yellow paper:
Posted July 18, 2008 by Leah Hoffmann
in Pens, Paper & People, Planning Tips | 3 comments »
We recently got a very helpful tip from a reader named Ellie:
I have always had a problem with using pencils in planners because the lead rubs off onto other pages and it just looks messy. However, in some situations you don’t want to use pen because things change so much. My solution to this predicament was using Frixion pens, which come in a variety of colors and are completely erasable.
According to Ellie, JetPens.com has a big selection of Frixions and other erasable (and non-erasable) pens. “Some critique the Frixions for not having the strongest colors,” she writes, “but I don’t really mind. They also make highlighters, which I’ve recently tried and really like.”
Personally, I use ordinary ink and the oh-so-sophisticated scratch out method, but the Frixion certainly sounds like a tidier idea. Anyone else have suggestions? How do you ‘pencil in’ your appointments without, well… penciling them in?
Posted June 20, 2008 by Leah Hoffmann
in Pens, Paper & People | 1 comment »
Looks like I’m not the only one who’s grown irrationally fond of Rhodia pencils. Blogger Michelle Krell Kydd recently posted her own ode to the quirky orange writing utensils: “a pencil for the senses,” as she put it.
As a side note, Michelle mentioned that she thinks “deleted words and phrases from my computer documents are sent to a hidden folder and rearranged to tell a tale I will be held accountable for in the future.” Oddly enough, a friend of mine, an artist, created a computer program that did just that for a piece he made last year—appropriately titled “Lost Words.”