Spring Break!

Dancing vintage easter egg bunnies

The Desk is spending this week cavorting with nature, staring at the crab apple blossoms and skipping through fields of clover (… as soon as the snow stops. Stupid weather!).

Hope you are enjoying a little spring break and communing with nature yourself.

I’ll be back next Monday with lots of reviews, products and stories. Happy Easter!

(image via Bytes Daily)

More about Pencil Tourism

Pencil Tourism Pencils

After my post last week about “pencil tourism,” I thought I’d share a few pencils I’ve collected over the years from various shops, tourist destinations, museums and hotels. The hotels in China always had pencils by the bedside table rather than lame ballpoint pens so I, of course, liberated those. I have a couple vintage pencils from a shop and school in Portland — the school pencil is charmingly chewed on so I wonder if some young student was stressed out during a test. I swiped a pencil from the local Geeks Who Drink quiz night as well.

Once my pencil collecting habits became known, friends and relatives started bringing me pencils from their travels like the Madeline Island pencils and the Gaudi Barcelona pencils. Unlike other tchotchkes that people have brought me over the years, I remember who gave me each pencil and the story behind them. Kind of cool, huh?

Typewriters on the Oscars

Penelope Cruz and Robert De Niro present at the 86th Academy Awards in Hollywood, California March 2, 2014.  REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson (UNITED STATES TAGS: ENTERTAINMENT) (OSCARS-SHOW)

Penelope Cruz and Robert De Niro present at the 86th Academy Awards in Hollywood, California March 2, 2014. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson (UNITED STATES TAGS: ENTERTAINMENT) (OSCARS-SHOW)

I’ve been scouring the internet trying to get some information about the typewriters used as a backdrop in last night’s Oscars broadcast during the Best Writing categories. Did you see them? I haven’t been able to find any information about the typewriters, who owns them or where they came from (the Museum The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences, maybe?). If anyone finds any information, please leave a note in the comments.

Somehow, in my searching, I found this photo instead:

 ( New York Public Library ) Nine women pose on a really big typewriter on display at the Underwood Elliott Fisher Exhibit at the New York World's Fair, 1939-40.

( New York Public Library )
Nine women pose on a really big typewriter on display at the Underwood Elliott Fisher Exhibit at the New York World’s Fair, 1939-40.

Thank you, internet non sequitur.

Rubber Stamp Organization

Organizing Rubber Stamps

I had been piling my stamps into a large drawer and then I will fish around looking for the one I’m looking for. It was not efficient at all. Then I pulled open my Alex drawer unit and realized I was storing notebooks in a flat file. What?!?! I know, craziness. So, I pulled all the notebooks out and put them on a bookshelf and lined up all my woodblock stamps, graphic side up, in the top drawer. All of a sudden, I am using them more often and can find exactly the one I want, when I want it. Even handle stamps stand up when the drawer is closed so those sit along the edges.

Alex Drawer Unit from Ikea

Feeling the need for some of your own stamps, visit The Shop. I’ve been restocking!

Render K + Uni-Ball Signo = LOVE!

Render K Uni Ball Signo Refill Writing Sample

While I was in SF, I found some refills for Uni-Ball Signo. I couldn’t remember if these would fit in my Render K but I was willing to take a chance. It was blue-black ink in my favorite 0.38 size. At less than $2, it was a gamble I was willing to take.

The package was labelled UM-151 0.38mm. Jet Pens does not seem to stock this particular flavor refill but Maido’s online shop, MyMaido does stock them.

UPDATE: Eagle-eyed reader, Adamfmoore found the proper refill on JetPens. It’s the Uni-ball Signo UMR-1 Refill and it sells for $1.65.

Render K Uni Ball Signo Refill

I discovered that the refill was about an 1/8″ too long so I trimmed it down with a trusty X-acto blade. The plastic is quite hard so if you try this yourself, be careful! It would be easy to slice your finger in attempting this. Once trimmed, the Render K screwed closed easily and voila! Deep green pen with blue-black silky ink. JOY!

Render K Uni Ball Signo Refill

Written on Rhodia No. 18 Uni-Blank Pad. Render K from Karas Kustoms.

The Chair is back at The Desk

Wow! Miles of travel at unholy hours make for a crabby Chair. I’m shuffling through purchases and photos but in the meantime, I thought you’d like to see who I met while in SF.

elaine and I

This is Elaine from Jet Pens. I had just as much fan glee as you’d expect finally meeting my contact at Jet Pens. I hope she doesn’t mind that I posted this photo here. We chatted endlessly about pens and paper and bored her poor friend to death. She did take our photo together to prove the meeting occurred.

I must get back to editing and sorting and sampling. More tomorrow!

Bag Lust: Po Campo’s Midway Weekend

Po Campo Midway Weekender

 

Po Campo is a bag company out of Chicago specializing in stylish bags for the active urban dweller and bike-centric woman. Their latest creation is the Midway Weekender. It’s designed to comfortably hold a change of clothes and miscellaneous personal  items. On the bottom portion is a zipper compartment for shoes or sweaty gym clothes. The straps on the side will accommodate a towel or rolled yoga mat. Can be carried by the handles or by the shoulder strap included.

I think its a great looking bag, good looking but truly functional. The bag starts shipping February 17th. A bit late for my travel needs but I’ll definitely be considering one of these in the future.

The bag measures 16″ wide x  13″ tall x  7.5″ deep. Large enough to tote a laptop as well as all those items needed on a trip or just going back and forth to the office. It’s available in black, brown and a blue-and-white stripe. Vegan materials. $99.

(via Po Campo)