Boston General Store

The Pencil Collection: Pencils of the World

The role of purveyor can often resemble that of a collector. We scour the world for the unique, the “must-haves”, the rarities, the exemplars. Nowhere is this more evident than in the pencil cups that adorn our desks in the Boston General Store buying office. There you’ll find all manner of writing utensils, including pencils and pens from countries near and far. 

For our latest pencil collection, we’ve curated a selection of some of the very best pencils we’ve found over the years from all around the globe. Some of them were a little hard to get our hands on (but we did!) and they all have a story behind them. 

Your Pencils of the World box will include each of these fine pencils: 

GRIP 2001 | FABER-CASTELL | EST. 1761 | GERMANY

The Grip 2001 is so named for the slightly raised dots that create a grip zone, for a comfortable, non-slip writing experience. These dots, plus the unique triangular shape, make for a writing tool that is so ergonomically thoughtful that it has won numerous awards. With 2H lead made of finely ground graphite fully bonded with the surrounding core, this pencil produces smooth, clean lines and is resistant to lead breakage. 

TENNESSEE RED | MUSGRAVE PENCIL CO. | EST. 1916 | USA

The Musgrave Pencil company has been manufacturing pencils in Shelbyville, TN, since 1916. Made from Eastern Red Cedar with a #2 core, the Tennessee Red features a matte clear coat to enhance the cedar, glossy red imprinting, a gold metal ferrule, and a white eraser. 

CARPINTEIRO | VIARCO | EST. 1907 | PORTUGAL

Viarco has been manufacturing pencils in their family-run factory since 1907. Crafted using traditional methods and high-quality materials, their pencils are known in Portugal as versatile and well-made writing tools. Their carpenter pencil features a classic rectangular shape that tucks flat into a tool belt and keeps it from rolling off the workshop table. A glossy red finish makes it easy to spot. 

SWISS WOOD | CARAN D’ACHE | EST. 1915 | SWITZERLAND

Imprinted on this Swiss Wood pencil are the words “Swiss Made”, which signifies the Caran d’Ache promise to maintain the highest standards for design, quality, and sustainability throughout the manufacturing process. Made of certified Swiss-origin wood, this pencil features HB lead, a hexagonal shape, and a matte water-based finish. A Swiss cross adorns the glossy red cap.

MONO 100 | TOMBOW | EST. 1913 | JAPAN

Considered to be the gold standard of pencils among enthusiasts, the Tombow Mono 100 is favored by artists, draftsmen, designers, and writers alike. A writing utensil of exceptional quality, the Mono 100 features a glossy jet black body with gold engraved letters and a white stripe across the top of the cap. The high-density 2B graphite lead produces smooth, dark lines. 

TRIOGRAPH | KOH-I-NOOR | EST. 1790 | CZECH REPUBLIC

With extra thick, 10.55mm artist-grade lead and a distinctive triangular shape, the Triograph by Koh-I-Noor is an excellent choice for sketching as it produces smooth, dark lines with good capacity for blending. Koh-I-Noor Triograph pencils feature 4B Hardtmuth Graphite, named for Franz Hardtmuth, inventor of the graphite degree system.

Curated by: Boston General Store

Further Reading: We also sell a curated collection of Blackwing pencils. Shop The Pencil Collection: Blackwing Edition here

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