Friday, January 28, 2011

It Takes a Village (to Make a Happy Pen Collector)

I don't have a whole lot of modern grail pens, most of the pens I burn for are vintage. But every once in a while I have to have something that's modern. A few years back it was a Montblanc PoA Medici, something I had burned for since handling one in 1992. It only took about 15 years for me to get there, and only after a used one came up on the boards at a price I could justify.

More recently, it's been the OMAS Paragon Arte Italiana in blue saffron celluloid. But one never seemed to come my way. And then one did.

Recently Charlie Harles, whom I have known for more than ten years, offered a saffron ballpoint on one of the sales boards along with another OMAS I have wanted, the Bibliotheque Nationale. I figured that if I ever got a saffron, I would then have a set. Riiiight.

Soon the ballpoint arrived and within minutes I was out on the 'net searching "OMAS Paragon saffron."

Oh joy. Classic Fountain Pens (John Mottishaw) has one on his page. Cool. Ring, ring "Is John there?" Sadness, he looks for the pen and it is sold. Woe! But while we're here, I could use another one of those remaining 14 K Flessible Extra nibs like the one on my modern Extra Lucens Ommagio. Grind a Broad to a stub? Sure. Cool, "Thank you, John."

But there's still a little matter of the pen. Novelli has one on their site. Do they? Yesss! Back and forth a couple of times with Marco, who has provided some of my best pens, and voila. It's here and, wonder of wonders, in time for the first day of classes.

So here it is, with a little help from my friends, my newest acquisition.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Bonhams February Sale of Vintage and Modern Pens

We have just completed the catalogue for our annual February Pen Sale in Los Angeles.

What is most exciting to me is that we will be offering close to three hundred lots of vintage pens on Monday, February 22, in addition to our regular sale of modern limited edition pens later the same day.

A selection of these pens will be available for viewing at the LA International Pen Show on both Saturday and Sunday.

You can preview the sale online at

Also please check out the new Bonhams pen page at