7 Reasons to Gift a Fountain Pen

There are hundreds of reasons to give gifts from birthday presents to a simple thank you. There are also times where you may feel like giving a gift for no particular reason- the anytime gift that can surprise and delight in its unexpectedness. With the holidays approaching you have even more reasons to be on the look out for the perfect present. My go-to gift is always a fountain pen.

There are many reasons that I choose to gift fountain pens to my friends and family. I get asked a lot about them since I work at a pen company, but beyond that,a fountain pen in itself is a special sort of item. It invites creativity, and creates a connection not only in the writing but in the enjoyment of the pen itself. It sparks conversation, learning (or relearning in the case of my mother), and exploration into new realms of ink and paper. It isn’t just meant to be consumed, it is meant to be used and enjoyed.

Also I love them and want everyone else to, too. So there’s that.

Here are some of the reasons that I choose to gift fountain pens, but I’m sure there are many more. I’ve loved watching how my friends and family have chosen to use them and I’m sure you will too. 

1. They probably don’t have one 

Unless your friend or family member is already into fountain pens, chances are they don’t have one. Or if they do it’s somewhere in the bottom of a desk drawer. Either way, a fountain pen is always a surprisingly useful gift. It also seems scholarly, so they’ll think you are smart. 😉

2. You can tailor your gift to your recipient

There so many types of fountain pens! Each pen was made with a different sort of person in mind. Does your best friend love craft cocktails? How about a Montegrappa Fortuna Copper Mule! Is your brother into mountain climbing? Try a Monteverde Mountains of the World fountain pen! These are tools that accomplish a task (writing), but also reflect a personality. You get to pick one that will fit your person best!

3. They encourage writing

I don’t care who you are, as soon as you pick up a fountain pen you want to get writing! If you are gifting a fountain pen, you are giving them something they will want to write with. They’ll be wowed by how different this enhanced writing experience is. And with writing comes so many possibilities! 

4. You (may) get letters

Do you have a friend or family member that lives far away? Just because you don’t have daily interaction with them, doesn’t mean you don’t care about their lives. Why not strike up a written correspondence? Gift them a fountain pen, some stationery, and explain your plan. 

5. Learning (or perfecting) a skill

Handwriting is a skill that can be polished. Even if you learned cursive as a child, in our digital age it could have been years since you’ve used it. They may take up writing drills, or just because they are forced to slow down when using a fountain pen for the first time, find that they actually enjoy writing more. I know this is one of the things I enjoy most.

6. It’s good for their health

Life moves fast for everyone these days. Slowing down and taking the time to write can reduce stress, clarify your thoughts and feelings, and help you solve problems quicker. Pair your fountain pen with a notebook for journaling and give the gift of stress relief.

7. They inspire creativity

Fountain pens inspire and encourage creativity. You can use them in so many ways! You can write with them (obviously) but you can also create art. With online sketching classes like Liz Steel’s SketchingNow Foundations and the Urban Sketching movement, your gift can help them express themselves in new and exciting ways, exploring the world around them. 

Those are some of the reasons I choose to gift fountain pens. Just a tip- I usually sit down with each person and help them get the pen started. If it’s a cartridge only pen, I pop it in for them and let them write with it. If it’s a converter pen, I talk them through the ink fill. If you don’t have time for that, don’t worry! Point them towards Fountain Pen 101 and let Brian explain it to them. 

Do you have a go-to gift that you give? 

Write on,
2017-10-11T13:43:30+00:00 November 10th, 2015|Holiday Gift Guides|24 Comments
  • Kathleen S.

    I started writing letters to my niece because I wanted another excuse to use my nice fountain pens and inks. We’re happy “pen pals” now. Last month I bought her a cheap set of calligraphy markers, and she loved them. So she’ll be getting a fountain pen and some ink for Christmas! In fact, I think I’ll order them right now…

    • Hi Kathleen! I would love to have that opportunity with my nieces and nephews when they are a bit older. What pen did you end up getting her?

      • Kathleen S.

        I ordered a Pilot Plumix (with a converter) because of the stub nib–I thought she might like to experiment with it. I also got her an ink sampler: the Crystal set. I thought the bright colors would appeal to an 11-year-old.

  • Kathy

    Great article, Madigan. Last year I gave my brother, a retired police officer, the Monteverde Tool pen. He gave me a ballpoint that had a whistle and special pointed end to keep in my purse to use for protection! I’m the tinkerer in the family, and he’s the cop! Obvious by our gifts!

    • Hi Kathy! It sounds like you got perfect gifts for each other. I hope he loved the Tool Pen! 🙂

  • Mitch Halpern

    When I got married, I gave each of the groomsmen an Omas Bologna. Got a lot of oohs and ahs. More importantly, they still use the pens ten years on, although none of them has caught the “bug”

    • Hey Mitch! I got married this past summer and gave all my bridesmaids Kawecos. Great minds think alike! They’ve all enjoyed them and we’ve had some fun conversations about ink etc.

  • Neville Smith

    Thank you Madigan, Great Article. All reasons I like to use pens myself. Can you please share the name of the pen used in point #5 Learning a Skill – I love it!

  • Tom Johnson

    Madigan, you have all these reasons so well thought out! They also apply to gifting a pen to oneself too. I find practicing my writing skills and perfecting my letter styles to be very relaxing and stress relieving. A number of letters that I learned many years ago have been changed into forms much more to my liking. Consequently, my handwriting has improved. I will work on a single letter for a while to get it just right (for my taste) like you show above. This is so well presented, thank you.

    • Hi Tom! Thanks for your kind words. It’s definitely easier to write blogs like this that come directly out of my own life. I’ve changed my own writing as well from using fountain pens! It’s such a pleasure to see your writing improve after all that hard work. 🙂

  • I gifted two pens so far, but the only person who has actually used a pen I used to own is someone I sold a Pilot Penmanship to. The two people I gave pens to don’t really use it 🙁

    • Hi Amaryllis! Ah bummer. 🙁 I got my husband a Kaweco Raw last year that he wasn’t too keen on. Then he saw the Monteverde Regatta Sport Rose Gold and it was all over. He takes it to all his meetings at work. Sometimes they just need to find the right pen for them!

      • I guess I should work on finding that, then! Maybe I could offer them flex pens… they’re both artists, that’s probably something they could like!

        • Oooh great idea! I got my best friend’s mom is an artist, so I got her a Konrad along with some artist friendly inks. She has enjoyed experimenting with them. 🙂

          • Artist friendly inks… what would those be? I’m guessing Platinum Carbon Black, most probably?

          • Yeah! Or De Atramentis Document ink in Black. Then I picked some of my favorite non-waterproof inks to go over them. You could also do a black with the Platinum mix-free set, so they could experiment with making their own ink colors. 🙂 http://www.gouletpens.com/is-plat-inkm-1200/p/IS-Plat-InkM-1200

          • The mix-free set sounds like a great idea! I’ll try going for that 🙂

  • Michelle

    Thanks Madigan for the wonderful article! I’ve been thinking of getting fountain pens for two of my favorite family members for Christmas. I just hope they use them, because they both tend to be pack rats! BTW, what are the names of the pens in #6? I’ve been eyeing some vintage pens for my collection, and these look like a fun start.

    • Tom Johnson

      Michelle, I’m pretty sure these are Pilot E95S pens. They do have a vintage pen look to them. The black pen is posted, the ivory/burgundy pen is capped. The E95S has a solid 14k gold nib, EF, F, and M nibs available. I’ve been thinking about this pen for most of last year and finally ordered one last night. Here is the link to these pens: http://www.gouletpens.com/pilot-writing-instruments/c/179/?facetValueFilter=tenant~pen-model%3Apilot-e95s Note that these are very small pens, but beautifully designed and have great reviews on Goulet Pens and on Fountain Pen Network. I’ll post my own review next week.

      • Michelle

        Ah it’s a Pilot! Thanks for cluing me in Tom. (I’m relatively new to fountain pens so please excuse the guffaw. 😀 ). Pilot has turned into my go to brand for FPs, so I’m really excited that this is one too. I really love the look of the burgundy and cream version, so I might have to splurge pretty soon to satisfy the pen addiction. Thanks so much for all of your help, and I look forward to your review.

        • Looks like Tom took care of you! I used the E95s Burgundy in a Monday Matchup a few months ago and loved how it wrote. It’s also just beautiful to look at! You can see that Monday Matchup here: http://blog.gouletpens.com/2015/03/monday-matchup-39-pilot-e95s.html

          • Michelle

            Oh wow, thanks Madigan! Now I know I have to have the E95S. From the look of the F.S. Fitgerald quote, it seems as if the nib has a bit of springiness. (yay!) Now to pick out a nib, and a bottle or two of ink to go with it. 😀

  • Phil

    Those are absolutely wonderful reasons to give a fountain pen and to share our enthusiasms in the form of a gift. Reading the noun “gift” forced into awkward service as a verb always makes me wince, but Goulet wisdom always makes me smile. Thank you.