In the early 1990s I worked for a company which empitomised the start-up "family" culture. We went through some very tought times. And we had some pretty amazing times. But the tough times came first. Those of us who made it through the hard start-up period before we really found our feet felt a certain bond - which has left friendships to this day. That bond was really epitomised for me by a simple pen that we got after surving a really tough period and coming out on top. It was a Mont Blanc Meisterstück Le Grand with the company logo printed on it

Time has passed and the logo is so worn away it's more a trick of the mind than a trick of the light that lets me see it, but that pen still holds a huge significance for me (I've not signed a significant document without it). Every time I pick it up and feel the weight I'm reminded of how much fun we had there.

But all things must change, and while the Mont Blanc will never be displaced in my mind it's been joined by a new stable mate. This time from Caran d'Arche - a Ecridor Retro Rhodium. This one is a gift from a client who over the last few years has become a very good friend (no-one in their right mind would keep going back to this project - it's insane! But more fun the working in a chocolate factory!)


In the same way that I find it incredibly hard now to choose between my Mont Blanc and Rado watches it's going to be hard to seperate these two pens emotionally as well as practically. As writing instruments thay are both amazing. As objects they both display a simplicity and beauty that reflect the subtle understatement I think is so much more important than pretentious displays of wealth or fashion..

I don't write much as I use the computer too much (I'm not sure if that's cause or effect - my hand-writing is terrible - even my daughter is a critic!) but when I have to set pen to paper if I can't reach for one of these I may well just have to hold off making my mark....

And no matter which I reach for they've already got great memories attached.