From a kernel of an idea in 2012, Fountain Pen Day is now a
full-blown event. This year’s celebration takes place on Friday,
November 3 (Fountain Pen Day always takes place on the first
Friday in November).
Cary Yeager, marketing coordinator and sales representative at
Kenro Industries, has run Fountain Pen Day from the beginning. “A
group of us had spoken about International Pencil Day. We’d gathered
online and asked, ‘Why isn’t there a Fountain Pen Day?’ I Googled it, and
nothing came up. That first year, we just went with it, and people really
engaged, especially the online community,” Yeager says.
Both retailers and bloggers saw the potential in Fountain Pen Day.
Retailers conduct special Fountain Pen Day sales, and bloggers spread the
word among their followers on ways individuals can participate. At
fountainpenday.org/sponsors, Yeager lists all the participating entities
and the number of years in which they’ve participated. He also credits
participating bloggers like Brad Dowdy, Leigh Reyes, Stephen Brown, and
Azizah Asgarali (see “The Gourmand behind Gourmet Pens” in this issue
for more on Asgarali).
Fountain Pen Day 2017 promises to be the biggest celebration yet.
Yeager says, “We’re gaining more and more retailers all the time. We
have over 200 retailers participating worldwide. The Ohio Pen Show is
taking place the same weekend for the next few years, at least.”
A highlight of this year is an exclusive Fountain Pen Day Legend
fountain pen designed and made by Ryan Krusac. Producing five pens a
month over the course of a year, Krusac will complete a total of 60 pieces
in either L-14 or L-16 bodies, according to the customer’s preference. The
wooden cap displays an engraved Fountain Pen Day logo on one side and
Krusac’s logo on the other, both filled with crushed turquoise. Fountain
Pen Day logo is also etched into the No. 6 stainless steel JoWo nib. A
black pen sleeve with plush turquose interior, donated by Rickshaw,
completes the package.
Customers request their edition number—from two to 60—which is
also engraved on the pen cap. Pens are priced at $425 for the L-14 and
$450 for the L-16, with $175 of the proceeds benefiting the Newton Pens
Over the past five years, artisan penmaker Shawn Newton has
given away $26,000 in college scholarships. To ensure the endeavor’s
growth, Newton is attempting to raise $10,000 to fund a full-fledged
endowment. Newton says, “The idea to start an endowment is from
Thomas Hall of penucopia.com. I’m really glad everybody has been so
supportive of funding it.”
Ryan Krusac’s wife and partner, Julia, notes, “The edition will raise
$10,500 if we sell through.” The first pen in the edition will be auctioned
as part of the initiative, she explains: “The number one pen will feature
additional turquoise inlay at the top and bottom of the pen. We’re
hoping a bidding war will help us hit $11,000 for Shawn.”
Both the special edition number
one Fountain Pen Day pen and
standard pens will be on display at
the Colorado Pen Show (Oct. 6–8).
Auction for the number one pen
takes place at Newton’s website and ends on November 3 at midnight.
Further details are available at fountainpenday.com.
With this additional altruistic endeavor, Fountain Pen Day gives the
community yet another reason to celebrate. But more than anything,
Yeager urges writing enthusiasts to participate actively. “It’s so important
for people to use the day to engage others to write,” Yeager says. “Bring
your favorite fountain pen to work on Friday and get them looking. Then
spend the weekend at a nearby brick and mortar store and meet with
friends. Gather your pen club. Use the occasion to share your passion.”
For ideas on how to celebrate Fountain Pen Day and to see a list of
sponsors, visit fountainpenday.org or fpdpen.com. See Shawn Newton’s
work in this issue’s Now section. To learn more about the Newton Pens
Scholarship Endowment, visit https://newtonpens.com/newton-pens-
scholarship-endowment/. Visit fountainpenstudios.com to see Ryan Krusac’s line of writing instruments.
While artisan penmaker Shawn Newton always has handmade pens for sale, the majority of his work is custom order. So a caveat: If you’re struck by this Prospector fountain pen with its swirls and waves of purple acrylic, it might already be gone. But Newton can always make it again, customized to your specifications. Newton uses Japanese hand files for the sculpted lines of the Prospector, which is seamless and unadorned, save for the Newton Pens logo etched into the barrel. The line comes in body sizes from small to oversize, and Newton offers a slew of choices in terms of nib size, material style, grind, and even fill system. MSRP: starting at $425 newtonpens.com