I like bamboo 7


You might have noticed that new blog posts at Bleistift were mainly announcements, there were no new review-style blog posts with images since last December. The reason behind this is simple: I have been quite busy at work (some colleagues left, but this is only part of the story) and I will be quite busy for some time to come.

Therefore, I am quite happy that I finally managed to put together some photos and a few words about two pencil stands I bought last November. They are from Wedo (Werner Dorsch)1, a company established 1933 and located just south of Frankfurt. In the first years Wedo’s main business was repairing fountain pens. Later they started manufacturing nibs for fountain pens. These days Wedo’s main business seems to be the distribution of office products, school supplies and gifts.

Before I start talking about these pencil stands I want to emphasise first that I love products made from bamboo and I am quite happy that products made from bamboo have become more and more common. Ten years ago there were not many products made from bamboo available in non-specialist shops in Europe. The only “solid” bamboo products I can remember from that time are tea sets and tools used for tea ceremonies. Even earlier, in the 90s,  only “thin” bamboo products, e.g. bamboo steamers, could be found in shops  …at least as far as I know, but please let me know if this was different where you live or whether there are some products I left out. Luckily today you can get lots of products made from bamboo: chopping boards, trolleys, laundry baskets, pencil sharpeners, … I assume that part of the reason of the increased number of bamboo products must be that the gluing process involved improved dramatically over the last years.

Wedo Desktop Butler

When I saw Wedo’s bamboo products online I could not resist and ordered their desktop butler and pencil pot, the fact that the price is very reasonable did not help resisting either. The desktop butler was € 9.40 ($ 12.85; £ 7.90) and the pencil pot was € 8.50 ($ 11.60; £ 7.15). Both products are extremely well made and look fantastic. I really like them. The strips of bamboo glued together are about 2 cm wide (nearly an inch), must bamboo products seem to be made from much narrower strips of bamboo. The walls of the desktop butler are 5mm thick, the walls of the pencil pot 7mm. This gives both products are very solid feel. My only concern with these pencil stands is the aluminium insert at the top. I fear they might scratch the surface of the pens out inside. This problem is however more perceived than real, at least in my case. I use these pencil stands for everyday pencils and if I store pens with polished surfaces in them I put them in and take them out carefully. The aluminium insert might not make any scratches, but I just don’t want to risk it…

Wedo Pencil Pot


Prices: November 2010

 

Exchange rates: February 2011

I bought both products in November 2010 from Schule-Uni-Shop.

  1. Using this type of acronym to create a company name is quite common in Germany. Other company names created using  a similar mechanism are Haribo (Hans Riegel Bonn) or Adidas (Adi Dassler). []

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7 thoughts on “I like bamboo

  • Kiwi-d

    Nice looking pencil stands. I would share your concern re the aluminium insert and scratching.
    That’s an interesting footnote about the company name acronyms.

  • Stationery Traffic

    Thanks for that review, Matthias. I had wondered why things had become quiet around these parts, but I understand that work has to come first. I have a major project going on at work which is eating into my free time and reduces time available for blogging and general stationery activities.

    As for bamboo: I own a bamboo steamer from the early 1990s and must agree, that 20 years ago there was not much available in bamboo. Other than that, I have some bowls from Ikea which look suspiciously like bamboo as well, and I am fairly sure I bought them from the Ikea in Kaarst which was the nearest branch back when I lived in MG around the turn of the century.

  • Sean

    Thanks for this post, Memm. It’s a smart-looking item.
    Since you are interested in bamboo, I thought you might like this:

    http://www.stick.com/instruments/bamboo/

    Though there are many hardwoods used for this instrument, a recent addition was pressed bamboo. I haven’t played one myself (rosewood has always been my choice), but I understand that they are extremely light.

  • memm Post author

    Thank you very much for your kind comments.

    Kiwi-d, I still haven’t had any problems with scratches, but I am quite careful after a bad experience with a ceramic pen holder from Pelikan and a pen with a polished surface.

    Stationery Traffic, I hope to have more time again soon, and I hope you too. Ikea does have some bamboo items. Recently I have also seen quite a few in Homesense / TK Maxx.

    Sean, thank you for the link. I had to look up what a (Chapman) stick is – I have never seen one before. I then went to youtube to find out how it sounds and even found a video of you playing one 🙂

    Stephen, the windows in our house are very small, so lighting is actually always my problem and the reason why taking photos for this blog is quite time consuming – the fact that we have bad weather most of the time doesn’t help either.

  • Matthias Post author

    Sean, I just realised that not only do Chapman sticks look like pencils, according to Wikipedia they are also made out of wood and graphite…