Vintage pens, in particular fountain pens, are highly collectible and come in a wide variety of colors and styles, from elaborate jewel-encrusted casings to sleek and simple cigar-shaped designs. There are three main types of vintage pens: 1) dip pens have a nib to dip into an inkwell; 2) fountain pens have a self-contained ink reservoir; and 3) ballpoint pens have a little ball that allows ink to flow out when the pen is put to paper.

The 1920s were a time of innovation and prosperity for pen manufacturers, who started developing plastic pens in a variety of colors and styles. The Sheaffer Balance, released in 1929, started a trend toward streamlined pens. The 1930s saw the introduction of more affordable models, sold in dime stores. The 1940s ushered in ballpoint pens, and a more modern look typified by the famous 'Parker 51', the classic collector pen released by Parker in 1950.

Up until the 1960s, the emphasis in the pen industry was on the development of better-performing and easier-filling pens through innovations in nib and reservoir technology. In the mid-1880s, craftsmen had created the first reliable fountain pen, but it had a long way to go.

By the 1960s, ball point and cartridge technology had made performance a non-issue, and manufacturers like Parker, Sheaffer, Waterman and Montblanc began to focus on fancier material and designs, with a variety of colors, lacquers, and engravings to differentiate their high-end products. Pens became a gift item and fashion statement, and were ultimately produced as limited editions for the collector market.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Ernesto Soler's extensive homage to one of the most popular pens ever produced, the Parker "51," introduced in 1941… [read review or visit site]

Jim Mamoulides' vintage and modern pen-cyclopedia. Start at the main gallery, featuring detailed articles (with pho… [read review or visit site]

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Recent News: Pens

Source: Google News

Queen Creek blogger will make you want to write with fancy pens, April 17th

Inside the blue bag will be his travel companions: 10 varied writing instruments -- some fountain pens, some vintage pens, some cutting edge pens. All are precious in the pen-collecting world, where Mike is one of the most popular voices. "I started...Read more

Anna Kendrick To Pen Collection Of Autobiographical Essays, April 16th

Anna Kendrick, well known for her wit and sarcasm, is set to turn her attention to a collection of autobiographical essays. Anna Kendrick has been signed to pen a series of autobiographical essays which will showcase her quick wit and dry sense of humour...Read more

Laura Benanti Set To Pen Collection Of Humorous Essays, To Be Published In ...
Broadway World, April 13th

Current NASHVILLE and THE GOOD WIFE featured player and Tony Award-winning Broadway regular Laura Benanti is set to pen a new memoir of humorous essays according to a new report. Benanti comments, "Every single day, something weird happens ...Read more

My Ridealong in a 9-Day All-Women's Extreme Truck Race in the Moroccan Desert
Yahoo Travel, April 2nd

“That dotted line is a camel track,” Ms. Miller said, pointing to a vintage pen-and-ink map as we sat by the pool. “It's not necessarily a road, but it could have become one since. “And those squiggly lines are dunes, but bear in mind this map was made...Read more

The return of the fountain pen, March 25th

Every working day before I start pounding the keyboard of my ridiculously flashy 27-inch iMac, I perform a little ritual. I straighten the fountain pens I keep on my desk, and make sure they are fully inked. Though I always have an eye for my next...Read more

Pen collector speaks
Tehachapi News, March 25th

Pens can be works of art. This was evident when Kent Schick spoke to Kiwanis about his hobby, turned business, of making pens. He explained that he had tried making pens about 25 years ago and considered his work a failure, but six years ago he tried ...Read more

Wiz Khalifa launches vaporiser pen collection, December 10th

Rapper and marijuana connoisseur Wiz Khalifa has teamed up with designers at Grenco Science to launch a line of vaporiser pens. The Black and Yellow hitmaker's Taylor Gang collection is based on items from “a secret space mission” and one of the pens ...Read more

The fascination with fountain pens
BBC News, December 9th

Duni is one of thousands, perhaps millions, of people worldwide who love and collect fountain pens. Some seek vintage pens, from the late 19th century, while others are attracted to newer, high-end creations from brands including Montblanc and Dunhill...Read more