A Year in Review
I would be a fool to say that 2020 was a good year. I hope that everyone who reads this is well, and that they (and their loved ones) have all been safe this year. Needless to say- many of your fellow pen pals have changed the way they buy/use/deal in the pen hobby. Everyone is hopeful for a speedy distribution of vaccines, and returning to a Pen Show in 2021.
I celebrated my fifth anniversary as a pen retailer in 2020. It was supposed to be my best year to date. I'm sure that fellow dealers had the same outlook/goals for this year. I saw a big increase in online sales because of the "New Normal" we experienced this year. Some of my fellow dealers were forced to temporarily close their B&M operations- some were able to offer "Curbside Pickup". Some dealers took a bigger "Look" at online only sales. Online-only dealers like myself fared well thru this crisis (for the most part). The way these shops conducted business changed only a little- the need to mask, maintain social distance, as well as protecting ourselves and customers when shipping items outside our warehouse. Being a "Sole Member" LLC- with a "Home Warehouse", I never had to "close". My Shipping Address (The CH UPS Store) also continued operations as an "Essential Entity". If the need arises to close down/Quarantine again in 2021- rest assured that I will continue to maintain the safe practices I have already put in place- AND REMAIN OPEN TO SERVE YOU.
We added no less than 10 Brands to the store this year- including: S.T. DuPont, Caran d'Ache, Scrikss, and my collaboration with Shaw Pens for new pen products. Paper, Inks, and Accessories include: Leuchtturm1917, Nuuna, Fiorentina Leather, C.d.A Inks, 3-Oysters Inks, Bock Nibs, and my very own Fed Pens Nibs (Bock)! Mark Bacas (Nibgrinder) also grinds these nibs to both Architect, and Italic Stub styles for me as well! I now represent 50 new Product Brands, and hundreds of Pen, Paper, and Ink products! Already planning to add more Brands/Products next month to get 2021 rolling along! Stay Tuned! Frank
In November- I took a chance, and again rented retail space at my local shopping mall. This year, I was able to get a much larger space totaling 1200sq Ft! I am only using half of this space, and I am allowed 25 people in this space with NJ Covid restrictions. I had a great BFCM Weekend, and a Great weekend before XMAS as well! I have decided to continue renting this store 1 weekend per month for the foreseeable future. In Fact- I am planning a Pen Event (PEN SHOW) there on January 16th! Consider this the "Fed Pens Philly Pen Show"! There is ample room for me, and 3/4 other vendor dealers to set up, distance, and market items! I already have Alan Shaw (Shaw Pens), and Rob Rosenberg (Sensa and LeBoeuf Pens) coming to this event. I have contacted others, and would like to see 1 or 2 more Dealers/Makers/Vendors come to the store! You need to be able to leave NJ within 24hours afterward to avoid any quarantine requirements (This means about a +/-100-mile radius of Philadelphia ideally). So if you are a fellow dealer, vendor or maker in the Mid-Atlantic, feel free to contact me to reserve your spot in my pre-paid mall space! (I will be there all weekend Jan 15-17 during regular mall hours- vendor event is slated for Sat 1/16 from 12-6PM, but is open to the other times as well!) Site is Moorestown Mall/Eastgate Shopping Center- Rte38 East, Moorestown, NJ (Off exit #4 of the NJ Turnpike/12 East of Center City, Philadelphia).
Conklin- Conklin Pens continues to amaze Crescent FP Collectors with the newest edition of this iconic model. Now- there is an all-metal "Gunmetal" LE model than is gunmetal finished, with gunmetal trim. If you have always dreamed of a "Stealth Crescent FP"- your model is here! These models are numbered/limited to 1898 total pieces. Order Today!
Pelikan- Pelikan has 2 new 14k Gold nib FP Models- even offers BROAD nibs in these variants as well (usually 18k only previously). Shown here are the new M405 Silver-White FP, and the M600 Red Tortoise FP. Both are in stock, and ready to ship! Thanks to the broad nib offerings of both- you can now get a broad nib in our Vibrant Orange and Violet-White M600/605 stock as well! We will gladly swap nibs with these models- with no charge nor hassle!
#pensinthepipeline include the revival of Tibaldi Pens in the US! YAFA Brands will be distributing Italy's oldest? pen brand, and we will begin stocking/offering models in January! Stay Tuned!
See you next year Pen Pals! Stay Safe!