Should I sharpen them?

7 comments

Velvet pencil
Though I may have a lifetime supply, I don’t consider myself a pencil collector. I’ve always thought pencils were meant to be used. The economics seem in accord: Almost all the vintage pencils on eBay, even great and famous pencils, are cheaper than new quality pencils, with very few exceptions. So I’ve never had trouble sharpening a 1950s Faber-Castell 9000 or Eberhard Faber Mongol. And they all still seem to be in plentiful supply.
Velvet pencil
Somehow, this box seems different. American Pencil Co. of New York Velvet No. 2s, they’ve stayed put on a shelf, occasionally looked at. They have a very rich natural wood stained finish, topped by a gold ferrule with a blue accent.

Velvet pencil
The artwork on the box is unmatched by anything I’m aware of on the market today.

Velvet pencil
Some people would preserve these pencils for their collection or future profit. But I’m mostly curious about how they write.
Velvet pencil
So my question is, should I sharpen them?

7 Replies to “Should I sharpen them?”

  1. I bet they’ll smell great and write really nicely. Of course you should sharpen them and give them a try. I love finding new ‘old stock’ things like this.

  2. As somewhat of a fetishist I say no! As a consumer of quality stylii, I say yes, yes, yes! It does seem a shame to tamper with the pristine coolness of an untouched box of Velvet pencils, the advertising has such a lux look, but I am inclined to agree with JAbbott only to this extent…sharpen one and report back to us. Your blog brings a smile to my face :>), thanks!

  3. Thanks for sharing the photographs — I’ve never seen anything like that in pencil packaging. If it were anything other than a perfect dozen in that box, I’d say “Sharpen.”

  4. NO! Don’t sharpen them. This is a wonderful example of Victorian era graphic design. You have a museum piece here and it would be cool to keep it in mint condition.
    I really think this is a cool website as I have always been interested in graphics and the tools it uses.

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