Other people visit monuments, I go to art supplies shops. And pen stores.
My favorite pen store in Paris is Mora Stylos. I’m sure you can see why. The trays hold pens that carry their age better than many pens decades their junior. Many pen stores have modern writing instruments, but only a few display Waterman safeties and filigree overlays and Parker 51s alongside Nakaya pens. In fact, this might be the only one.
Mora Stylos is the exclusive retailer for Nakaya in France. Probably in most of Europe, come to think of it. Yoshida-san had a pen clinic there in May and Christine sent me a picture of him hard at work:
Their Nakaya selection on display isn’t bad at all. They even had a couple of negoro-nuris, which are usually on order. They are currently working with Nakaya on a Mora-exclusive design. That would be worth adding to any collection; Mr. Mora is an artist and craftsman in his own right, with his own philosophy and design as seen in his Oldwin pens.
You can already see the beginnings of this cross-cultural collaboration in their request for lacquered clips to go with the regular Cigar and Piccolo. (Lacquered clips are usually on special-order pens, not the regular line.) Christine explained that this way, the function of the clip is retained while also keeping to the overall “purity” of the urushi finish. They liked the Dorsal Fin v. 2, and we had a good chat about the virtues of the hairline finish.
I brought out my mystery Parker Duofold Jr. with the silver repoussé overlay for Mr. Mora to inspect – I had hoped he would be able to give me clues to the provenance of the overlay. He took all of a minute to say, “The pen is from the 1920s but the overlay itself is modern. Argentinian.” I turned to BFF Tom and said, “Ariel Kullock?!” and Mr. Mora said, “Ariel, yes! He’s a good friend.” Not only did I get a clue, the mystery was solved on the spot. I am now a confirmed Mr. Mora fangirl. 🙂
I had emailed a month earlier to reserve two Oldwins: a Kaleidoscope and a Dragon Argent, a sterling silver dragon pen.
Christine brought out three Kaleidoscope pens for me to play with. Each one had a unique pattern swirled into the ebonite. I had to say goodbye to these two, but I’m sure they’ll find their humans soon. Sorry I took a while, Tom. Because you’ve been so patient with me throughout this trip, and took so many pictures, you will be rewarded by Zombie Leigh eating your brains.