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”)

Parker51.com

Parker51.com

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]

Penhero.com

Penhero.com

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

Lesley Mireya Reith
Arkansas Online, March 1st

I admire her on many levels but as a fellow single woman and also, I would love to check out her pen collection. Movies I've watched the most: Sleepless in Seattle, Shall We Dance, Pretty Woman, and most recently Frozen. My most recent read: David...Read more

Collector's Item
Advertising Specialty Institute (press release), February 17th

Lisa Anderson isn't in the habit of cursing her husband, but it wasn't always that way. Before she knew him, "we used to bid against each other on eBay," says Anderson, president of the Pen Collectors of America Association. And that made her mad. "I...Read more

Microsoft's CEO expects pen to be extinct in a decade
CNET, February 5th

As a fountain pen collector (that's right), I know for sure that he is wrong. Fountain pens have a strong following. Like someone else mentioned, theyre like vinyl. New models being made. They are also still used in Europe...just saying. But like...Read more

Classic pen brand brought back from the dead
Asbury Park Press, February 5th

BLAM design – a website dedicated to lettering, comics, handwriting, vintage pens and calligraphy – reported that during the height of Esterbrook's popularity, the Esterbrook plant had 450 workers and produced 600,000 pens a day. A history Rosenberg ...Read more

Wiz Khalifa launches vaporiser pen collection
Hollywood.com, 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

Vintage pens in demand from collectors
Sydney Morning Herald, August 22nd

In the digital age, some prefer to write using pen and ink, even if only when signing documents. Be it lawyers seeking an ostentatious pen (an extension of the 'mine is bigger than yours' mentality) or fountain pen fans who like to collect vintage...Read more

Hermès Nautilus Pen Collection Launched
Pursuitist, July 8th

Add a touch of elegant fashion to your writing with the new pen collection from Hermès. The French luxury fashion house has collaborated with Australian industrial designer and Japanese pen manufacturer to launch the Nautilus. Developed by Pilot for ...Read more