Stabilo Othello 282 pencil

Stabilo Othello 282 pencilSchwan-STABILO’s website says the company was founded in Bavaria in 1855. Today, they are a successful conglomerate with 2800 employees, and their main revenue source is from cosmetic pencils.

Their highlighters and markers are what one might see in an office supply store in Canada. Graphite pencils are not typically for sale at local retailers.

The Othello 282 has very unusual colouring – solid forest green, with the hexagonal edges pinstriped in a light green. They look like pieces of candy! The cap is painted red.

The claim is that this style started in the 1920s after a bad paint run in the factory accidentally produced a similar pattern.

The pencil is marked:

STABILO Othello 282 HB=21/2

Of course we usually think an HB grade is an No. 2. The obverse side has a barcode.
Stabilo Othello 282 pencil
It’s also named after a play and character of Shakespeare. I’m curious about this, and have sent a note to the manufacturer. I’ll update this post should they reply.

It lays down a fairly dark line, and doesn’t crumble. It’s a good pencil, though I wouldn’t call it exceptional.

It’s great to find that a 19th century pencil maker is still making good products.

13 Replies to “Stabilo Othello 282 pencil”

  1. I am an artist who has used Stabilo micro 8000 for years, now I can’t get them as they are no longer made. I talked to the company, they suggested I try the Othello, you say they are not exceptional. I am curious what pencil do you consider exceptional? Thenks. annell@taosnet.com

  2. Hi Annell, if the Micro 8000 is your favourite, I’d recommend searching the web and buying a large quantity – they still seem to be available from a good number of stores.

  3. Hi Annell,

    I’m very sorry – I just took another glance at a few online art supply stores, and see that while a few places “list” this pencil, they have only the very hard grades, or no stock at all,

    Hmmm, maybe someone else knows of a source?

  4. I used to only see the Othello here and there in remainder bins, etc so assumed it was on its way out, however I have just seen it in a large department store in nice new hang-sell blister packaging so it appears to be on the way back. I carefully peeled back the barcode sticker on the packaging, and underneath was printed “Made in CZ”. So, I figure the Othello is made by Koh-I-Noor under contract.

  5. The Othello can still be found in Berlin, Germany at the smaller stationery shops. I have found B grades as well as HB, and both eraser-less and eraser-tipped versions. There is another “forgotten” Stabilo pencil that is often sold with the Othello in the same bins, and that is the “Opera.” The Opera is decorated with red and white stipes. The Othello and Opera are two very good pencils. They are somewhat less expensive than the two most popular German pencils, the Faber Castell 9000 and the Staedtler Mars Lumograph. The Stabilo’s are not quite on that level of quality, but they are competent, nice-looking, daily-use pencils, ideal for a schoolboy’s “Maeppchen” or pencilcase.

  6. adair: I’m happy to read the word “Mäppchen” here :-) Thanks for your information about the availability of the lesser-known Stabilo pencils in Germany – I will try to find them.

  7. I have a box I purchased a long time ago when I was an art student around 25 years I am going to give them to my nephew/godson who has shown an interest in art. I hope he appreciates them as much as you do.

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