Sunday, August 10, 2014

Report on the 2014 Portland Pen Round-Up!

Three members of our Vancouver Pen Club (Brian, Dave M and Aaron) attended the 2014 Portland Pen Round-Up! which was held on July 12th, so I thought it would be of interest to our members to post a report written by Round-Up! co-organizer Michael McNeil of the Portland Pen Club. The Portland event is the closest thing to a mini pen show in the Pacific Northwest, and it's a good opportunity to meet other pen people, as well as buy, sell & trade writing instruments. There are plans for a 2015 Round-Up! and I will post info about it here when I get the information from the show organizers (probably not until next year, though).

Without further ado, here is Michael's report.....

Hi all,
The 2nd Annual N.W. Pen Round-Up! was held on July 12th in Northwest Portland, Oregon.

Everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves and the pens and there was quite a bit of commerce going on. I enjoyed the event. Part of my fun is finding pens to buy and I bought quite a few fountain pens and a couple of mechanical pencils. I know others were buying pens as well. Some of us found pens and mechanical pencils the day before, at the antique show.

I met quite a number of people who attended, that I had some long discussions with them, and felt like I spent most of the day talking. It was very good to see longtime friends, also. Rick Propas and his wife Sharon were here in Oregon on vacation and touring around parts of the state. Another friend, from the San Francisco Bay area, came by for a time and I was quite surprised to see her! A couple of our friends from British Columbia brought pens and sold at the event.

It looks like we will plan to have the 3rd Pen Round-Up! In 2015. We would like to invite everyone reading this to attend, whether you live in the Northwest U.S. or not!

I would like to share a link to Rick Propas’ “The PENguin Blog”:
Rick has posted articles and some fantastic photos of their trip here to Oregon.

I would like to thank Rick, John Gram and John Schwab for the use of their photos taken at the N.W. Pen Round-Up! We would also like to thank Pen World International for donating a large stack of the June edition of Pen World magazines. I would also like to thank all of those who helped with advertising, getting the word out and made the event come off without a hitch, especially Stuart! Also thanks to Mike Rosen, who originally had the idea and gave it a name!

(~~~ Report by Michael McNeil ~~~)

A couple of photos of the show floor:
Photo below, from L-R: Show co-organizer Michael McNeil, Beau and his father Bud (both from the Seattle Pen Club) and Rick Propas.
Photo below, from L-R: Show co-organizer Stuart Hawkinson, Dave M. from our Vancouver Pen Club, Portland Pen Club member Ron Church, and an unidentified gentleman.
Photo below: VPC member Dave M. peruses the wares for sale.
Photo below: Vancouver Pen Club's Brian J. (in blue t-shirt) was at the show, and was a blur of motion!

To see more photos from this year's event (and some from 2013's), go to and click on individual photos to enlarge. Many thanks to Michael for the show report, and to Rick Propas, John Gram and John Schwab for the photos!

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

VPC Summer dinner - Thursday August 21st

The summer dinner for VPC members will be held on Thursday August 21. VPC members - please RSVP me no later than August 19th, as per the instructions in the members' group email I sent on July 28th. Please note: this is not a regular meeting...We will return to our regular "themed" meetings at Perks on Thursday September 18th (theme: to be announced). Have a great summer, everyone!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Photos from our July meeting

Attendance was a bit sparse at our July meeting (an ill-timed breakdown of the local rapid transit system was the likely culprit) but the thirteen VPC members who came to Perks had an enjoyable time! (Group shots courtesy of Richard of Perks pen store---click on photos to enlarge)
(from L-R: Charles, Glenn Marcus, Peter, Julienne, Maja, new member Mark S, Tony and James)
(clockwise from far left: Julienne, Maja, Aaron, Patti, Tony, Bruce, James, Marey, Mark and Peter)
Julienne and Glenn chuckling about an OMAS Limited Edition owned by Julienne that is currently missing from Glenn's extensive collection (don't worry---he has one on order ;)

Our topic that night was Special Edition (SE) & Limited Edition (LE) Fountain Pens , and we saw a wide variety of examples. I forgot to take photos of Bruce's great collection of Italian LE/SE pens (sorry, Bruce!) but many thanks go his way for suggesting our July topic!
(Photo above: Mark brought in an amazing collection of Montblanc Limited Editions, as well as some lovely LE/SE pens made by Stipula, Pilot, Bexley, Conway Stewart, Delta and OMAS)
(Photo above: My photo doesn't do justice to the beauty and craftsmanship of the Italian pens Glenn brought in for our topic. If you want to see really nice photos of them, check out his blog

Ok, I cheated and took a photo of my own LE and SE pens at home :)
(Photo above: From L-R: my Sailor Procolor 500 in the Special Edition Winter (Shikisai Hoshikuzu) pattern, Pelikan M640 Niagara Falls SE, the 2007 Bexley Simplicity SE made for the Fountain Pen Network, the 2011 Stipula Passaporto LE made for FPN, a Stipula Duetto LE made for the World Lux pen store in Seattle, a Waterman Carene SE made to honour the late advertising wizard David Ogilvy, and two Sheaffer Special Edition pens (the 1996 Imperial Triumph Holly and the 1997 Prelude Snowflake)

Next month we will be having our annual VPC Summer Dinner on Thursday August 21st at the Oakridge White Spot restaurant in place of a regular meeting. I will send out RSVP requests to members next week so please check your Inboxes, and let me know if you can or can't make it.

Monday, June 30, 2014

July meeting info

Date: Thursday July 17, 2014
Place: Perks pen store, 5844 Cambie Street, Vancouver, BC
Time: 6:30pm-8:30pm ("early birds" welcome at 6:00pm, to chat before the meeting)
Theme: Special Edition & Limited Edition Fountain Pens
If you have any new pen-related stuff to show, please bring it along as New Acquisitions is always our secondary theme. No RSVPs required for regular meetings!

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Orange is the New Black

Some photos of my gorgeous new Delta Dolcevita Slim fountain pen, which I received at our June meeting. This beautiful pen is hand-turned from solid bars of orange and black resin to create a dramatic & bold effect. The cap ring is made of sterling silver, hand-engraved with a decoration that was found in old paintings from Pompeii. I can honestly say that the pen looks even more stunning in person...and it writes like a dream. Many thanks to the Delta Pen Company for this generous gift!

Look at that gorgeous Fusion nib! Patented in 2012 by the Delta Pen Company of Naples, Italy, it was created by fusing a layer of 18K gold to a steel alloy to create a unique nib with enhanced ink-flow properties. The nib on mine is marked Fine, but it writes a bit more like a Fine-Medium, which is just perfect for me ~~~ Review by Maja Furlong ~~~

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Photos from June meeting ~ Italian Pens

Twenty-one members attended an excellent & informative talk on Italian Pens by VPC member Glenn Marcus on Thursday June 19th. Glenn spoke at length about his visits to the pen factories of Aurora, Omas, Montegrappa, Visconti, Stipula and Delta and his conversations with the owners & designers at those firms about their past history, current production models, and future plans for their writing instrument lines. To illustrate his presentation, Glenn brought many fine examples of the fountain pens produced by these companies from his own pen collection.

Many of these pens can be seen (beautifully photographed by Glenn) on his personal pen blog ~ "Glenn's Pens". As a matter of fact, Glenn created an excellent blog post about his talk here that nicely summarizes what he spoke about at our meeting.

Thanks to Delta's generosity, we were fortunate to have two examples of their current model, the "Journal" to see and try out. One of the pens came with a steel nib that was a wonderful writer, and the other pen came with a "Fusion" nib, a product unique to (and patented two years ago by) Delta. This innovative design features a steel nib fused with a layer of 18K gold to create a nib with enhanced ink-flow properties. The Fusion nib is gorgeous, so if you are looking for a smooth-writing nib that will elicit compliments on its appearance, treat yourself to a Delta fountain pen with a Fusion nib :) Well done, Delta!

Many thanks to Glenn for his excellent presentation, and to the Delta Pen Company (official site) for providing the pens and literature on their products. Delta posted some of Glenn's own photos from our meeting on their official Facebook site here

And now, some photos from Thursday night's meeting (all photos by Richard Clarke):
(pictured above, counter-clockwise from left: Glenn Marcus (light shirt), Stephanie, Julienne, Peter, Tony, Bruce, Charles, Patti (who came with her husband Aaron, one of our newer members) and Derek

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Click on photos to enlarge ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
(pictured above, counter-clockwise around the table: Glenn, Stephanie, Julienne, Peter, Bruce, Tony, Charles, James, Aaron, and Derek. In the row behind Glenn are (L-R) new members Nasya and Sam L, Marey and Brian (light blue shirt). In addition to Nasya and Sam, we had two other brand-new members at Thursday's meeting - Melody and Jeff (who are peeking out of the extreme lower left-hand corner of the photo)
(That's me--Maja--in the navy blue t-shirt behind the Rhodia rotating display, and Stuart in the yellow polo shirt).
(Bill Kempton, one our club's founding members arrived a couple of minutes into Glenn's talk, but was glad he came to the meeting! That's Bill standing between James and Patti above)
A hearty and well-earned round of applause for Glenn!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Our next meeting will be on Thursday July 17 at the usual place and time (Perks pen store-5844 Cambie Street in Vancouver, from 6:30pm to 8:30pm or so). Theme/topic: to be announced! Check our website for more details at the end of June. Many thanks to all members who have attended meetings in 2014---your participation & input is greatly appreciated!

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Our June meeting topic? Italian Pens!!

Date: Thursday June 19, 2014

Place: the usual place (Perks pen store, 5844 Cambie Street, Vancouver, BC)

Time: the usual time (6:30pm-8:30pm, but "early birds" welcome at 6:00pm, to chat before the meeting)

Theme: Italian Pens ~ a short talk by Glenn Marcus

Longtime VPC member & pen collector Glenn Marcus of has kindly agreed to do a short talk on modern Italian fountain pens and his personal experiences with the companies that produce them. Over the last several years Glenn has had the privilege of visiting several factories in Europe that produce modern writing instruments and we are honoured that he has agreed to do an overview of Italian pens for our June meeting. Please bring your very favourite Italian fountain pen (yes, just one pen!) with you to this meeting.

As a side note, our 2014 summer dinner will be held on Thursday August 21 at the White Spot restaurant inside Oakridge Mall, right across the street from the Perks pen store where we usually meet. This is a members-only, RSVP-required dinner, so I will send out invitations to VPC members in mid-July. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Upcoming out-of-town events in which VPC members may be interested:

Seattle Pen Club meeting will be held in Bellingham, WA this Saturday May 31 at the Bellingham Public Market (1530 Cornwall Ave, in Bellingham, WA) from 10:00am to 1:00pm, and VPC members are invited to attend.

The 2nd Annual Northwest Pen Round-Up! will be held on Saturday July 12th, 2014, at the Lucky Labrador brew pub/restaurant (1945 N.W. Quimby Street) in Portland, Oregon, from 11:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. Admission is free and they only charge a nominal fee for vendors who want to set up. If you would like table space, please contact Stuart Hawkinson ( or Michael McNeil ( directly.