Saturday, November 26, 2022

Photos from our Vancouver Pen Shop get-together/November meeting ~ Part 2

Here's the second set of photos taken during our pen club's recent get-together hosted by the good folks at the Vancouver Pen Shop on November 17th (* see previous blog post for other photos *). This event was held at their store's old location on West Hastings; since then, the store has moved to its new location at 555 Howe Street!

This get-together wasn't like a regular meeting of our club, but a couple of meeting themes were suggested and implemented --"Green Fountain Pens" (store manager Shannon's idea) and "Your Favourite Pen Purchased from the Vancouver Pen Shop"
, which was suggested by a longtime member of our pen club and one of the Vancouver Pen Shop's most loyal customers -- the gentleman you see below... Stuart!

(all photos by Maja, except where noted ~ please click on images to enlarge)
If you've been following the virtual "show & tell" here on our blog, you know that Stuart has purchased many pens and pen-related items from the Vancouver Pen Shop over the years. For our meeting themes, he brought along a few green fountain pens and his very favourite pen purchase from the Pen Shop - the gorgeous Graf von Faber-Castell 'Intuition' fountain pen on the extreme right of the photo below...

Above: (L-R) Sheaffer Levenger Connaisseur in the "Aegean Sea" colour, vintage Sheaffer 'Craftsman', vintage Sheaffer 'Balance', Parker 'Classic' fountain pen (the first pen Stuart purchased from Van Pen... way back in 1988!), Lamy 'Studio' in "Racing Green"(another Van Pen purchase) and the Graf von F-C 'Intuition'. Stuart's adorable cat & bird pen roll was bought at the Pen Shop as well.

(~ photo courtesy of Sherman ~)

Many thanks to Sherman for sending in this photograph of the pens he brought to the meeting! He was busy taking those great selfies (which I posted in Part 1 of this blog post) and I was busy mingling with our members and the Van Pen staff, so I never got around to photographing them. Along with the photo, Sherman added: "Enclosed please find the green pens that I brought to the event. The Platinium 3776 was for the 2nd theme, to remind that I have bought a Black one there and they wrapped it so nice as I was gifting it. Was so impressed how kind they were."

Photo above (L-R): Platinum President Wine Red, Kaweco Student 60’s Swing, Pelikan Souverän® M400 Black-Green, Visconti Rembrandt Special Ops Limited Edition, LAMY AL-Star Turmaline Special Edition 2020, Franklin-Christoph Model 02 Intrinsic Retro Emerald & Ice, élysée Lyric Rouge (30 Line), élysée Laque Jade (80 Line - Design Line), Conklin Mark Twain Crescent Filler™ Spring Green/Gold Leaf Marble.

Above: Louise's beautiful Rickshaw Bags 8-pen roll (featuring the famous "Great Wave" print by Hokusai)  with some lovely fountain pens peeking out from it, like her new Leonardo 'Momento Zero Grande 2.0' in "Angel Skin" resin (the third pen from the left), and a couple of cheery green TWSBI 'Eco' fountain pens - a "Glow Green" (which glows in the dark!) and a "Jade" model.

Above: A sampling of some green fountain pens that I own---(left to right): a UK-made Parker 'Duofold', Parker '17 Super Duofold', Parker 'Insignia', Sheaffer Lifetime flat top Jr. (ca. 1924-26), Sheaffer 'Triumph 1000 Lifetime'-Vac-Fil, Sheaffer 'Tuckaway', Pelikan M200 matching fountain pen & ballpoint in marbled green, Parker 'Vector XL', Waterman 'Allure', Yiren '405' (an iridescent Lamy Safari "tribute") and a Lamy 'Accent' (with Karelia Wood grip section) that I purchased from Amy that night (thanks, Amy!)

Side note: I purchased the Pelikan M200 fountain pen on April 16, 2002 from the Vancouver Pen Shop (I still have the receipt!) from the late Mrs. Margaret Leveque, who was the store's first owner. She and her husband Paul (who did pen repairs) ran the store for many years, and I clearly remember buying the pen from her and how she mentioned liking broad nibs. The pen has an OB (Oblique Broad) nib, but it's not an italic oblique---it's a round oblique...not something you see every day. I liked the pen so much that I bought its matching ballpoint from Van Pen three months later. Memories!

Rene always has a lot of interesting vintage pens to show during our meetings and these are no exception. From left to right, we have: an Oversized Sheaffer 'Balance' , a colorful pen by E. Faber, a Parker 'Geometric Duofold' (nicknamed the "Toothbrush Duofold" because of its pattern), an attractive Eclipse, a Waterman '4' model, an Esterbrook 'LJ' in the harder-to-find "Icicle" material, a Parker 'Moderne, a Sheaffer WASP 'Clipper' (in a plastic fondly referred to by some as "Circuit board"), a Lamy 'Studio' in "Racing Green" (like Stuart's!) and a Sheaffer ' Pop' Star Wars fountain pen featuring Jedi Master Yoda.

I apologize for the blurry photo above---my camera focused on the pens inside the display case---but this is Rene's Lamy 'Studio' in brushed stainless steel, the first fountain pen he bought from the Vancouver Pen Shop

Here's that stellar new find of Nathan's that I mentioned in Part 1 of our meeting blog post. It's a genuine Montblanc 'M' fountain pen that he recently acquired for a pittance via Facebook. The seller worked on the nib himself, but wound up nearly wrecking it, so rather than paying a small fortune to buy a replacement nib, he decided to sell it. Nathan was the lucky buyer, and after he applied his nib-smoothing/nib-grinding skills to the nib, he made it into a wonderfully-smooth writer.

I love the pen's grooved section and the shape of the 14K gold nib (which is like a semi-wraparound nib). There are knockoffs of this model to be found online, but their nibs don't look anything like the real thing ... and they sure don't write as nicely as the genuine article; this is one stylish fountain pen that's a dream to write with!

Nathan 's leather 6-slot pen case (made of 100% vegetable-tanned leather) that he acquired via Aliexpress...

The pens are separated and well-protected by molded slots so they can't knock against each other and cause damage. The case closes via a hidden magnetic snap, and is available in an assortment of colours.

Here's a closer look at the fountain pens inside Nathan's pen case (bottom to top)---a black  TWSBI 'Eco' that was the first not-cheap pen that Nathan bought on his fountain pen journey (and yes, it was from the Vancouver Pen Shop!), a 3D-printed pen made by Hex Pens in Hong Kong, the aforementioned Montblanc 'M', a vintage OMAS Extra Lucens 556/F, a 'Soyuz' fountain pen made in the U.S.S.R, and a NOS (New Old Stock) 'Chollima Brand' fountain pen from North Korea (!)

Above: a cool 3D-printed ink holder made by Nathan that holds six bottles of Robert Oster ink

And speaking of Robert Oster ink... Here's a writing sample (done by talented calligrapher & Pen Shop staffer Renz) of the special edition Robert Oster ink that was made for the Vancouver Pen Shop's 35th anniversary! The colour's official name is "Vanpen 86", so named because 1986 was the year in which the store opened.

Now for something completely different---two intriguing Delta fountain pens belonging to Jerred (who has an amazing collection of Delta pens--check out his reviews on this site). These new acquisitions are a blue Delta 'Horsepower" (inspired by high-performance European cars) and another car-inspired pen--a grayish-blue Delta 'Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint 50th Anniversary' Limited Edition made for the 50th anniversary of Alfa Romeo's legendary "Giulietta Sprint" model (only 954 of the Limited Edition fountain pens were produced).

The pens have some very interesting design features that make them stand out in a sea of fountain pens. The 'Horsepower's' bulbous cap (seen above) is shaped to mimic the lines of a Formula 1 race car when viewed from above, and the pen's barrel has a wide decorative band made of real black carbon fiber (a material widely used in Formula 1 race cars). The 'Giulietta Sprint's hand-crafted sterling silver clip (seen in the photo above this one) was made to resemble the grill work on the original classic 'Giulietta Spirit' automobile.

Here's a much more familiar-looking fountain pen -- Alvin's Platinum 'Century 3776', which he purchased from the Vancouver Pen Shop a while back. It's in the original packaging, which included a Platinum pen pouch. I forgot to photograph the fountain pen that his wife Yen bought at the Pen Shop that night -- a modern Esterbrook 'Estie' fountain pen in the Limited Edition "Maui" material.

I tried to take photos of most of the pens that were brought in by our members, but I apologize to those whose pens I missed. Glenn Marcus (who joined our club a long time ago and was at our club's get-together at Van Pen) has been a regular customer of the Vancouver Pen Shop for many years and wrote a very nice piece on the store on his wonderful website -

Last, but not least, is the fountain pen that new Vancouver Pen Club member Phil bought at the Pen Shop during our meeting---a handsome Pilot 'Custom Heritage 91'

As the sign above says, the Vancouver Pen Shop's location is now 555 Howe Street (between Dunsmuir and Pender) --they actually had their grand opening on November 23! By all accounts, the new store looks great (and it's more spacious + has more natural light) and it's conveniently located one block from the Expo Line's Granville Skytrain station and two blocks from the Canada Line's Vancouver City Centre Skytrain station. Check it out if you're in the area -- their store hours are: 10:00am - 6:00pm Monday through Saturday.

Once again, our sincere thanks to owner Margot, manager Shannon, the staff at the Vancouver Pen Shop who were on that night ---Fernie, Marlon and Sunshine---and helper Jacqueline for hosting our meeting. We had a wonderful time! 😊

(~blog post & photos by Maja~)

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