Made in Great Britain

Staedtler x Star Wars

Merchandise from TV series and movies is all around us and is also pretty common in the stationery world, but a lot of the licensed stationery doesn’t actually show the manufacturer and quality is sometimes dubious.

In the Eighties and Nineties Staedtler used to produce quite a lot of licensed pencils with designs linked to TV series and movies. Most of these were unbranded, i.e. as a consumer you weren’t able to see these were actually made by Staedtler. It seems that this is down to the fact that in most cases Staedtler didn’t purchase the licence but produced the pencils according the customer specifications. This seems to be still common: the manufacturer is not the licence holder which might also explain the poor quality of a lot of licensed stationery as the company holding the licence might just get the cheapest factory to produce the pencils as the products get bought because of the licensed characters, not because of the quality.

I had a big collection of licensed pencils made in Staedtler’s Pontyclun factory in Wales but decided to let them find a new home as I just have too many pencils.

The printing on the pencils included some globally well known trademarks, like Lion King and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, but also a lot of UK specific brands that are not well known outside the UK and Ireland, e.g. Beano and David the Gnome. To my surprise one type of pencil was particularly popular, the MASK pencil, based on an animation from the mid-Eighties. Even though I watched a lot of children animations in the mid-Eighties I was not familiar with this series and rather surprised by the popularity. The same is true for another series I wasn’t familiar with and that seemed to be very popular: Bravestarr.

The collector who took these pencils made me aware of Star Wars stationery that Staedtler used to produce and that I want to share with you today.

Image © “Star Wars Spanish Stuff”
Image © “Star Wars Spanish Stuff”

You can find the original information and more at Star Wars Spanish Stuff.

Thanks to Eberhard Rüdel and Andrea Plässer for additional information used in this blog post.

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Drying your plates with stationery

We have a new tea towel in use in our home. Not any tea towel …a stationery-themed one 8^)

In June 2019 I was lucky enough to have met the Pencil Talk Editor in person when he was in the UK and we had a nice stroll through the park. At the time he just visited the British Library’s Writing: Making Your Mark exhibition a few days earlier. Among other nice gifts he also brought me a tea towel from this exhibition. It’s really nice and felt too nice to use, so it was in storage for a while but we started using it now.

The tea towel from the Bristol Library’s exhibition

It looks great. I like that it doesn’t only feature pensbut all sorts of working tools.

It also does a good job at drying plates and cutlery 🙂

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Pencil Calligraphy: a look at the Manuscript Lettering Pencil Set

Thanks to Scribble and the United Inkdom crew I recently had the chance to try out the Manuscript Lettering Pencil Set.

It comes with a glass file for shaping your own leads as well as preshaped leads in assorted colours.

Have a look at my video to find out more about this pencil set.

You can find further information on Her Nibs’ Blog and on Scribble’s Blog.



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Old and new left-hand friendly stationery from Staedtler

It’s International Lefthanders day this weekend. For more than 40 years this day has been observed on 13 August.


In my wife’s photo above you can see two Staedtler items for left-handers. Yes, that left-handed Metro pencil is apparently made by Staedtler UK in Pontyclun. They also made pencils for Berol and Chambers in their Pontyclun factory (You might remember the 2014 La La Land post with Chambers pencils and the 2013 Berol post).

You can read more about the notebook used in the photo in Pencil Talk’s latest blog post and more about Helmut Hufnagl in this Insights X post and more about the left-handed rulers in another Insights X post.

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