Monday 20 October 2014

Precious Things (2)

I love stationery and the associated bits and bobs. I’m not really fussy, a beautifully fabric covered notebook, or a moleskine or even a plain Staples exercise book will do the trick…

One of the things I love about stationery are the pens or, more specifically, Fountain pens. I love the idea of the ink, the sound of the nib on the paper. The colours of ink available...I flirted with purple and turquoise and green.

My first fountain pen was bought by my Grandparents when I started Secondary school. It was a plain Parker fountain pen that could take ink cartridges or be used with an ink filler and a bottle of ink (not recommended for a clumsy 11 year old). You were expected to write in pen now not in pencil as you’re ‘grown up’ (times have changed they are encouraging children in BigR's school to use pens so they don’t have to press as hard to make a mark as you would with a pencil!). 

This pen saw me through my GCSEs and my A-Levels. Came to Uni with me and through my PhD. I had the nib and barrel replaced about 2 years ago when it had to be sent to the pen museum (oh the shame) for replacement parts (OK, it is 30 years old).

So when I finished my PhD, I was surprised but so pleased to be given a pen and pencil set by my PhD supervisor. This is the grown up Fountain pen – it signed the papers for our house, it signed my lectureship job contract, it’s signed hundreds of Christmas cards from us both not just me. 

Although on a daily basis I’m using whatever lidless ball point pen I happen to have at the bottom of my handbag, I love both my pens.
I‘m still using cartridges though - more than a bit clumsy at 41 too!

Joining in with:

Sarah at Mitenska
Leanne at Today’s Stuff
You’ll find their Precious Things there.


  1. Oh this lovely, and you have reminded me of my first Parker fountain pen, that I had when I started secondary school. How wonderful that you still have it all those years later. Brilliant post, N!
    Leanne xx

  2. I haven't used a fountain pen in years! We had to use one from primary 2 onwards for our handwriting sessions. It was a special one made for small children's hands. Lovely post! x

  3. I have a couple of precious pens too, so I understand why you love them! xx

  4. Wonderful, I absolutely love fountain pens. There's something so romantic about them. As well as being green - no throwing away plastic all the time. I'm particularly clumsy, but I do like a nice bottle of ink. It's bound to end in disaster. CJ xx

  5. I am a stationery addict too. I love your fountain pen and that it has been an important part of your life. The brightly coloured inks sound beautiful. Bee xx

  6. What a lovely post. I was given a fountain pen as a present for being a bridesmaid when I was 9. It is 'child sized' so much too small for my enormous hands now but I wouldn't part with it or the world. I also have a (rather expensive) fountain pen that was a present from my husband years ago and that saw me through my mature student years of both exams and revision. I make a point of writing birthday and Xmas cards in proper ink though I confess that on a daily basis I use a 'non-stop' pencil.

  7. I do love a good fountain pen. You can't write with a flourish when using a biro, can you? And I like how owning the same ones means you remember all the important documents you used it for over the years...
    I quite like ink stains too. Strange, but there's something artistic and creative about them.
    I'm now thinking about trying different coloured inks. Black's always been my colour of choice but always in a cartridge. I wouldn't trust myself with a bottle despite my not minding ink stains...
    Great idea for a post. I'm looking forward to the November one!
    S x

  8. Fountain pens are so nice. I had one that belonged to my dad when he was in school. My husband loves pens and inks and is sort of a collector of them, you could say. I use ballpoint pens myself but I do have a preference for purple ink when I can find it.

  9. Another stationery freak over here. Always have been. I adore the felt covering in the first picture xxx

  10. I love that you used this pen for such momentous things, that's great. I used to have a fountain pen about 20 years ago but never liked it - it's biros for me, I'm afraid! And I have really appalling handwriting. too - I bet yours is nice. But what a great thing to treasure, very precious indeed. x

  11. Your fabric covered notebook is beautiful. I like stationery too especially notebooks and pencil cases. Shops like Paperchase and Muji are dangerous places for me. Well, dangerous for my wallet..I'm impressed that you've managed not lose your fountain pen after all these years. Definitely an item to treasure. x

  12. I love fountain pens. I used a Parker 51 when young, until its innards perished, and then a Lady Shaffer (spelling?) and not I use various Lamy Safari pens, in assorted colours but with the medium nib which is quite broad. Love them! My current favourite is canary yellow!
    Margaret P