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2021 Commonwealth Pen Show (Boston 9/12/21)!



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wildblueroan

re: Jay of Paper for Fountain Pens: does anyone know this man or his story? He made great journals with Tomoe River paper in several sizes and sold them at the Commonwealth show once or twice. It has been at least 3 years since he was a vendor-two years ago, he rented a booth but never showed up.  Most of the posts on his website are old, and last I checked, the contact link didn't work.  But apparently about once a year for the past 4 years he has posted a new batch of notebooks, sold out, and then gone dead again.  It is frustrating to miss these offerings, and I've been unable to make contact. He is probably out of business at this point especially with TR paper being discontinued, but if not, I would love to buy more of his journals...

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I had a lovely time at the Commonwealth show this year! My first time there, and only my second pen show in my life (the first was the San Francisco show, some years back). It is a two-hour drive for me if all goes well. 

 

Even when all goes well, I have a difficult time driving in cities, especially driving in unfamiliar cities, and driving in an unfamiliar city when my gps dies as I am speeding through a no-exits tunnel which spills me out on to a no-exits parkway filled with fast traffic in the wrong direction did drain me of much of the life force I had budgeted for getting through the day. However I regrouped. 

 

The show had a moderate, not completely overwhelming, number of vendors, and business, by the time I finally made it there, was booming. Place was mobbed. I was organized though -- I had brought a card upon which I had written my goals which were

one full flex vintage nib

a dark red ink to replace my Birmingham Pens Fred Rogers Cardigan Red which they no longer make
a bottle of Platinum Carbon Black

get my vintage Pelikan Tortoise 400NN nib smoothed
stationery and notepads
sell/trade the vintage Pelikan 100N with the nib I don't like that much

After several hours of agitated greediness, I was loaded with

THREE full flex vintage pens, including an ugly little celluloid Waterman purse pen with a to-die-for nib on it

An enormous bottle of Pilot Momiji which is not a dark red ink, more like a flagrant deep magenta
My Platinum Carbon
a newly-smoothed Tortoise 
a big stash of Rhodia and Tomoe River
my freebie bottle of Noodler's For-This-Show-Only, a deep turquoise he name Blue Lobsters And Whales, more or less a ringer for Diamine Asa Blue but hopefully not as danged wet


and thirty dollars left out of the big wad of cash I'd come in with

I also successfully traded my Pelikan 100N for one of my flexies plus a nib smoothing. 

Then I dove back into downtown Boston traffic, got lost, got lost again, saw that my phone had 6% power left to guide me to the turnpike, prayed for angels to rescue me, and they did, I saw the on-ramp signs just before my phone died. A long boring drive home filled with a mild sense of gloating satisfaction ensued. 




 


 

penswag.jpg

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Sailor Kenshin
2 hours ago, sombrueil said:

I had a lovely time at the Commonwealth show this year! My first time there, and only my second pen show in my life (the first was the San Francisco show, some years back). It is a two-hour drive for me if all goes well. 

 

Even when all goes well, I have a difficult time driving in cities, especially driving in unfamiliar cities, and driving in an unfamiliar city when my gps dies as I am speeding through a no-exits tunnel which spills me out on to a no-exits parkway filled with fast traffic in the wrong direction did drain me of much of the life force I had budgeted for getting through the day. However I regrouped. 

 

The show had a moderate, not completely overwhelming, number of vendors, and business, by the time I finally made it there, was booming. Place was mobbed. I was organized though -- I had brought a card upon which I had written my goals which were

one full flex vintage nib

a dark red ink to replace my Birmingham Pens Fred Rogers Cardigan Red which they no longer make
a bottle of Platinum Carbon Black

get my vintage Pelikan Tortoise 400NN nib smoothed
stationery and notepads
sell/trade the vintage Pelikan 100N with the nib I don't like that much

After several hours of agitated greediness, I was loaded with

THREE full flex vintage pens, including an ugly little celluloid Waterman purse pen with a to-die-for nib on it

An enormous bottle of Pilot Momiji which is not a dark red ink, more like a flagrant deep magenta
My Platinum Carbon
a newly-smoothed Tortoise 
a big stash of Rhodia and Tomoe River
my freebie bottle of Noodler's For-This-Show-Only, a deep turquoise he name Blue Lobsters And Whales, more or less a ringer for Diamine Asa Blue but hopefully not as danged wet


and thirty dollars left out of the big wad of cash I'd come in with

I also successfully traded my Pelikan 100N for one of my flexies plus a nib smoothing. 

Then I dove back into downtown Boston traffic, got lost, got lost again, saw that my phone had 6% power left to guide me to the turnpike, prayed for angels to rescue me, and they did, I saw the on-ramp signs just before my phone died. A long boring drive home filled with a mild sense of gloating satisfaction ensued. 




 


 

penswag.jpg

 

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My other pen is a Montblanc and...

 

My other blog is a tumblr.

 

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3 hours ago, wildblueroan said:

re: Jay of Paper for Fountain Pens: does anyone know this man or his story? He made great journals with Tomoe River paper in several sizes and sold them at the Commonwealth show once or twice. It has been at least 3 years since he was a vendor-two years ago, he rented a booth but never showed up.  Most of the posts on his website are old, and last I checked, the contact link didn't work.  But apparently about once a year for the past 4 years he has posted a new batch of notebooks, sold out, and then gone dead again.  It is frustrating to miss these offerings, and I've been unable to make contact. He is probably out of business at this point especially with TR paper being discontinued, but if not, I would love to buy more of his journals...

 

I was told he was a show regular, coming to many shows for many years.  But not recently.  Probably just stopped making journals :(

“I admit it, I'm surprised that fountain pens are a hobby. ... it's a bit like stumbling into a fork convention - when you've used a fork all your life.” 

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I was hoping to come, and am sorry I missed it--I need a couple parts, and had hoped to get one particularly nice but frustrating nib tuned.

 

But I found out Sunday AM that I'd possibly been exposed to COVID Friday evening (social distanced, outdoors, and it turned out to be a bad cold rather than COVID) and thought it wasn't a good idea to risk it.

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inkstainedruth
On 9/12/2021 at 11:50 PM, Intensity said:

I have discovered that today’s Noodler’s 1984 ink is exactly the hue of dark brownish ink I’ve been looking for for a long time.  I love it!  If anyone here doesn’t care for theirs, shoot me a message; I’d love a back-up bottle!  
 

On the other hand I found Lexington Gray an underwhelming hue, and not sure about King Philip’s Requiem.  I love KPR too!

I considered buying a bottle of 1984, but the swabs they had of it made it look a lot like El Lawrence, so I ended up not getting it.  It's interesting that King Philip's Requiem was resurrected -- I bought a bottle of that (as well as a bottle of Miles Standish and a bottle of Plymouth Wilderness) the first time I managed to get up to the Commonwealth show, plus a bottle of Miles Standish for someone who was on the West Coast (I traded for a bottle of vintage Carter's ink).

Just tried the swag ink from this year's show ink, Blue Lobsters & Whales.  Interesting color, leans slightly turquoise.

I didn't do a lot of shopping; got a bottle of ink and a Vanishing Point converter for my husband, and ended up buying myself a Parker 45 Arrow and a converter for that pen.  Showed off the most recent acquisition (the Mabie Todd Swan ringtop) to some people, and had Richard Binder fix the bent nib (from an ouchie accident when the nib assembly on my Decimo got knocked off my bathroom counter awhile back.  Most of the pens needing repair will have to wait for larger shows that stretch over an entire weekend.  But I did get to meet some people (and put faces to names) -- including Tim Holl (who I've talked to other years) who knows my one :rolleyes:brother-in-law -- and it was a joint "Oh THAT'S who you are!" moment.... 

But of course I'm now a complete wreck because we drove up from Pittsburgh Saturday, stopping for the night south of Hartford, CT; my husband drove me to the show, then had to get stuff from his mom's house out of storage, then come pick me back up.  We stopped in Danbury to have dinner with his oldest brother and his brother's wife, then made it to Fishkill, NY.  Drove the rest of the way back yesterday, and got home around 9:30 PM.  

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth

"It's very nice, but frankly, when I signed that list for a P-51, what I had in mind was a fountain pen."

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On 9/12/2021 at 7:01 PM, Intensity said:

 

 

Met Joost from Appelboom who is the new owner of Bromfield Pen Shop—unexpected to see him at the show.  One can now shop the main Appelboom website and have cheap shipping to USA addresses or even Boston store pick  up option.  The updated Boston store is opening tomorrow, if I recall correctly.

Wow, how interesting. This is the only pen store any where "near" my home in Maine. It will be interesting to see the changes--if any--next time I am there (I go there about once every five years). If he still owns it then.

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On 9/14/2021 at 3:30 PM, SamChevre said:

I was hoping to come.....

Me too, but then my son and his wife came to visit with their new puppy for the weekend, so pen plans were pushed aside for family and furry fun. Priorities! 

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Gloucesterman
On 9/14/2021 at 3:30 PM, SamChevre said:

I was hoping to come, and am sorry I missed it--I need a couple parts, and had hoped to get one particularly nice but frustrating nib tuned.

 

But I found out Sunday AM that I'd possibly been exposed to COVID Friday evening (social distanced, outdoors, and it turned out to be a bad cold rather than COVID) and thought it wasn't a good idea to risk it.

 

Thank you for being extra considerate and careful. It is amazing to think about how safer (and healthier) we all would be if people erred on the side of caution.

Just my two cents...

“Don't put off till tomorrow what you can do today, because if you do it today and like it, you can do again tomorrow!”

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inkstainedruth
On 9/17/2021 at 6:37 PM, Gloucesterman said:

 

Thank you for being extra considerate and careful. It is amazing to think about how safer (and healthier) we all would be if people erred on the side of caution.

Just my two cents...

Agreed.  I know that they were going to be very strict at the show about following the Somerville mask mandate.  What a difference to around here in Western PA.... :(  But I also noticed the difference last August when I was in Boston for the day -- most people there were wearing masks, whereas, in the place we stopped for lunch on the way home, some people in line in front of us completely ignored the sign on the door requesting that people mask up.  I actually complained to Corporate after we got home, and they had the location manager call me (she apologized profusely, saying the hostess on duty was normally wait-staff -- she herself having been on a family vacation, where her *kids* commented on "Look at all the people not masked up down here!" -- and wasn't forceful enough, and sent us a $25 US gift certificate to use in any location as an apology).

At the moment, we aren't visiting a friend of ours, who is a high school science and health teacher and who has underlying health issues herself -- because her school district is one of the many around here arguing over mask mandates....  (Frankly, we don't understand why she's still working for that school district to begin with, after -- when she was still teaching middle school -- she got her jaw dislocated breaking up a fight between a couple of students in the lunchroom...  and supposedly the GIRL in the fight actually threw the first punch.... :huh:)

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth

"It's very nice, but frankly, when I signed that list for a P-51, what I had in mind was a fountain pen."

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