It’s Christmas, your birthday or maybe a wedding anniversary. You have a wrapped gift in your hands and you begin to untie the little bow and gently pull at the neatly folded paper. Whatever it is, it’s fairly small but reassuringly heavy. It’s probably a perfect and thoughtful gift, but what if it isn’t? You fear for a moment you might hate it, and the reaction will flicker across your face before you can stop it. As you remove the last of the wrapping paper you compose yourself ready to express delight no matter what is in the box.
The box pops open with a satisfying snap. It’s a design08 AllBlack fountain pen from Otto Hutt. Your heart races, a genuine smile spreads across your lips and despite being stoic and fully grown, happy tears threaten to pool in the corners of your eyes.
The best gifts are the things we know we’ll use over and over again. Something that can be a connection to a special time, a loved one or an important place. This includes the jewellery we wear every day, treasured watches or even a tasteful hand-knitted scarf. People empower special objects with sentiment so we can enjoy human connections and good memories every time we touch that object.
Ask a person about their luxury pen and they will tell you how it came into their possession. Maybe it was a gift to themselves when they completed a Masters or a gift from their best friend when they turned 40. However it came to them, there will be a story, an accomplishment or a person in their account.
Luxury pens hold a unique place in the pantheon of such sentimental objects. They have connotations of the written word, skilled communication, or success in negotiations or business. For someone who runs a large legal team, or an accountancy firm signing papers is part of the symbolism and pageantry of success. Signing a contract with a biro doesn’t carry the authority and credibility of the moment.
Away from the world of business; for a journalist, a novelist or even a university lecturer, much of their day will be spent writing on a computer. But their skills in articulating and crafting words are linked to the artful craftsmanship of the prized fountain pen sitting on their desk. The one they look upon when a blank page and flashing cursor provoke insecurity.
In their case, the exquisite hand-crafted Namiki Yukari Royale Vermilion Urushi fountain pen is a talisman, that symbolises their mastery of the spoken and written word. It tells them, they can express and articulate anything with elegance and eloquence.
Luxury pens aren’t dazzling pieces of jewellery and they aren’t flashy sports cars. Instead, they are intimate symbols of relationships accomplishments or rare talents. Holding one in your hand might not be a daily event, but on those special occasions when called for, a luxury fountain pen has the unique ability to rise to the occasion.
If you’re looking for a perfect gift that will resonate through the decades, don’t overlook the fountain pen. In the right hands, it’s the mightiest gift of all.
There is not doubt that a luxury pen can be a symbol of accomplishment and grandeur. But many of these pens can be frightfully expensive.
Of course it begs the question, “What is luxury?”. Is it in the eye of the beholder or of others?
I believe a luxurious fountain pen is beguiling and performs well, regardless of price and there are many examples of them.
It does not have to be a pen from established “status” brands. A wood pen made with an interesting burl pattern can be luxurious as much as one plated in precious metals with gemstones.
This essay resonates with me in every way. I certainly allow my purchases of fountain pens reflect who I am and what I do so that they become part of life most days of the week. I love Parker because as a school child thiscbrand was associated with inaccessible luxury, I love my Sailors because they represent total healing, I feel my Leonardos take me to Italy and I admire the Dupont Atelier Line D in blue and gold because of its assocation with lapiz lazuli.