It goes without saying that if you use pencils a lot, you need something to keep them nice and pointy with, so today’s National Stationery Week post is about the humble pencil sharpener.
The three shown here all work with specific pencil brands. So, on the left we have the Blackwing pencil sharpener designed for use with the Blackwing pencil featured yesterday. It’s a two-stage sharpening system – one sharpens the wood and the other the lead so you get a perfect point every time. The ‘stop’ brake means you never over sharpen, which can be one of the perils of pencil sharpening with gusto!
The tiny sharpener on the right is from Faber Castell and designed for use with their 2mm propelling pencil. It doesn’t actually work that well but I am fascinated by it and it was worth every bit of the 65p it cost me for entertainment value alone!
My ‘go to’ sharpener shown in the middle, was always the blue Staedtler one supplied with my favourite pencils.
It is a tribute to German engineering and works so perfectly with the Staedtler pencils that you wouldn’t need to go anywhere else for pencil sharpening equipment…unless you had one of these beauties:
Ah, let’s take a moment to admire them…
The smaller, vintage model at the front is the magnificently titled Dahle 55, and whilst it will sharpen in some kind of fashion, the result really isn’t as good as it once would have been. It’s fairly old and the blades are dulled, but the Bakelite case remains in lovely condition and it has been around for as long as I can remember so suspect it came from a long-passed relative. Dahle are still in business producing all manner of modern sharpeners and their website is wonderful for a rummage.
The grander and shinier Helix A5 sharpener at the back was a hostess gift from Rachel Coopey – possibly the best hostess gift ever, and it has made sharpening all the blunt pencils one of the highlights of my working day!
There are five sharpness settings and whilst number 1 is amazing in terms of pointy-ness, I have settled on a middle of the road number 3 for everyday use.
Remember the Duncan Shott rainbow pencil from yesterday? Well here is what happens when you sharpen it…
May your points never be dull – Go forth and sharpen with joy!