Over the past years, we’ve seen some traditional pencil holders, and some newer versions.
There are still some problems with these implements. The traditional models have awkward grips, mainly due to the metal hardware, and interfere with comfortably holding a pencil.
The newer solutions are nice, but often impractically expensive – buying several boxes of new pencils would be cheaper than buying a Uni holder, for example.
Last month, I was happy to discover the Ito-ya pencil holder. I’ve read some negative comments about it here – yet – for the price, and after a month of use, I find it to be nearly perfect.
It seems to offer, for a reasonable price, a practical way to comfortably grip worn down pencils. In fact, it is so well done that it essentially relegates a near-century of pencil holders to the antique bin.
It is a subtle design. There are two pieces. An inner lightweight metal piece is the clutch and clamp, and holds the pencil. An outer piece – with metal inner parts and rubber exterior surface – screws on to the inner piece. The cap (part of the inner piece) acts as the grip for locking/unlocking action.
The outer portion has a rubberized surface, and is comfortable to hold. It also has a modern appealing designed look.
In the photos, a worn down 2B California Republic Palomino that I didn’t want to discard is shown. This arrangement has worked out really well. Truly, some might prefer this wider grip to that of the original pencil.
For $4 or so, I think it is amazing. It makes worn down pencils usable. In contrast to most predecessor holders, the pencil is very comfortable to hold, possibly more comfortable than the original format. It is easy to use. It looks great – and is available in four colours. And ultimately, for anyone who owns pencils that merit ongoing use, the price makes one (or several) a good investment.
8 Replies to “Ito-ya pencil holder”
Thanks for the thorough and informative review. I’ll make sure to keep an eye out for them the next chance I get to visit a Japanese stationery store.
Thanks for the detailed review of that very interesting pencil holder. The minimalistic design is very pleasing, and using the thread as the grip is very clever. Is there an online retailer that ships this pencil holder worldwide?
Thank you for the comments. Unfortunately, I am not aware of an online retailer that ships these pencils worldwide.
I’d love to give that a try. Can’t seem to find it anywhere though.
I have the Kutsuwa STAD pencil holder RH009 which is a cheap but brilliant and simple design – the pencil slides into the first piece (like a regular holder) then a second piece screws over the top of this first piece to secure the pencil. You would think this would be a bulky solution but is 12mm diamater and well within my comfort zone. These are plastic but if treated kindly and not overtightened should give plenty of service. By the way STAD is the student line from Kutsuwa – but don’t let that fool you – this product is good and very practical. It can also be used as a pencil storer by sliding the pencil tip first into the first piece and screwing on the second piece as above.
I bought a Staedtler pencil holder from eBay and since the seller was from Japan, I took my chances and asked him about the Ito-ya pencil holder and he said I could get anything from the catalogue through him – http://www.ito-ya.co.jp. Lucky for my bank account, I had trouble navigating the site because of the language problem and only asked him to get me 2 styles of pencil holders. The one shown above and another Ito-ya. His shipping price to Australia for the Staedlter was reasonable. It’s Nick at One-Stop-Japan-Shop on eBay.
That pencil extender, and many others, is available on a very easy to navigate site here: http://www.pencils.jp/product-list/4