Giveaway: Opus88 Koloro Fountain Pen (F)

Opus88 Koloro

With back-to-school right around the corner for many folks, this seemed like the perfect time for a giveaway. And we have the perfect thing, a brand new Opus88 Koloro from Appelboom.

One of my favorite models from Opus88 is the Koloro. The Orange/Yellow is reminiscent of school buses and No. 2 pencils. The large capacity eyedropper filled ink system means that you’ll be able to take notes for weeks without having to refill the pen.

Special thanks to our hand model and photographer for this giveaway — Bob. You can actually see the size of the pen in a larger man’s hand. If you’d like to read our full review, hop over here.

This is a brand new pen, graciously provided to us (and to our winner) by Appelboom.

TO ENTER: Leave a comment below and tell me your favorite back-to-school memory or ritual. Play along and type in something. It makes reading through entries more interesting for me, okay? One entry per person.

If you have never entered a giveaway or commented on the site before, your comment must be manually approved by our highly-trained staff of monkeys before it will appear on the site. Our monkeys are underpaid and under-caffeinated so don’t stress if your comment does not appear right away. Give the moneys some time.

FINE PRINT: All entries must be submitted by 10pm CST on Tuesday, August 13, 2019. All entries must be submitted at, not Twitter, Tumblr or Facebook, okay? Winner will be announced on Wednesday. Winner will be selected by random number generator from entries that played by the rules (see above). Please include your actual email address in the comment form so that I can contact you if you win. I will not save email addresses or sell them to anyone — pinky swear. If winner does not respond within 7 days, I will draw a new giveaway winner. Shipping via USPS first class is covered. Additional shipping options or insurance will have to be paid by the winner. We are generous but we’re not made of money. US and APO/AFO only, sorry.

DISCLAIMER: The items included in this giveaway were provided free of charge by Appelboom for the purpose of review. Please see the About page for more details.

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237 comments / Add your comment below

  1. I loved going to buy new pens and notebooks. It was all clean and fresh before the inevitable disaster that school actually was.

    1. I was JUST looking to buy this pen as I was looking through emails! Serendipity.

      Favorite memory is buying my beloved trapper keeper notebook- of course!

    2. I grew up in India. My favorite back-to-school ritual was covering the newly purchased textbooks with fine brown paper, adding labels, and writing my name on them.

    3. My favorite back to school memory was when I got a new computer for senior year of highschool to replace one that was 8 years old at the time and looking forward to being back at boarding school where the new computer would have internet access for the first time.

  2. Like probably most pen nerds, my favorite part of back to school was buying school supplies like pens, notebooks, and binders. At 44 I look back on the importance of having that year’s “cool” binder and I have to laugh about it. I remember dragging my poor father to what seemed a hundred stores trying to find this one particular brand, I don’t remember what it was called but it was almost like a pencil case that was a binder; it was hard plastic instead of flimsy plastic or cardboard/canvas, clicked shut, and had these ridges in the top cover with an elastic band that held pencils. The internet has solved that problem, I guess!

    1. My favorite back to school memory was being able to start crossing off the days until the school year was over. I had red hair, freckles, and braces. I am sure you can figure out why I wanted it to end!

  3. I remember a week or two before school started my mom would take my sister and I to a clothing store called MidIsland on Long Island where I’m from. We would have to try on new jeans and collared shirts and come out of the dressing room to show off. While I don’t remember the clothes much I do remember the smell of that store, especially the dressing room area. There were wooden doors and paneling around and the smell was “rustic”. It is something I will never forget.

    1. My mom always took a picture of me in my new clothes with all my supplies on the first day of school. She did this every year in the same spot. I love looking back at those photos! What a loving mother I was blessed with!

      1. My favorite school ritual was staying up as long as I could the week before school and then crashing. I would do this every day until I woke up and went to sleep at approximately the times I needed to for school.

  4. My mom has always been a shopaholic, yet a eagle-eyed sale shopper at the same time. So every year when it came to school supplies, the day before school she would lay out her “wares” and I could pick out what I wanted to take to school. There were always great pens and pencils and notebooks to choose from, plus the weird “necessities” like a mini stapler, pack of highlighters, and sticky notes. I don’t go to school any more, but I still get really excited when I see the back to school sales on stationary supplies.

  5. Playing Hide N’ seek in the olive groves and orange groves as we walked home after school. Thanks for this opportunity.

  6. I always loved school, so I have lots of favorite Back-to-School memories. However, I really LOVED organizing all of my brand new school supplies the night before the first day of class. I’ll admit, as a part-time college instructor, I still spend more time than I should gathering and organizing all of my supplies for that first day.

  7. I loved always joining in on the rush of getting school supplies before school started. Didn’t always get new things each year but when I did it was like Christmas in August.

  8. The only memory I have of starting a school year was when I learned I was to be assigned to the most disciplined oriented 5th grade school teacher in the system. Due to my nature and school history to this point I knew it was not going to end well for me. This resulted in my throwing up the night before the first day of school.

  9. Shopping for a new three ring binder (in purple!) and new pens and pencils. That was my favorite part as a kid and I still enjoy it with my own girls now.

  10. Kindergarten was a fun time. I liked my teacher, Miss Burger. I was shy and only painted at the easel once during the year but when I did I was so happy and remember feeling special. We would take naps and drink milk everyday in class. Good times.

  11. I used to love to go shopping for all the paper and notebooks and pens and pencils and just organizing it and decorating the book covers.

  12. First of all, thanks for doing the giveaway. Because I am a teacher, my ritual is updating my syllabi for the courses I am teaching the coming semester. Since some students are better lawyers than students these days, one must be sure to dot every “i” and cross every “t” or someone will take twice the time to figure out a way around leaning something as it would take to learn it in the first place. The second biggest challenge is this ritual is figuring out how to slip a pun in there somewhere.
    Thanks again.

  13. I was JUST looking at buying this pen after your reviews!
    Favorite memory – buying my beloved trapper keeper of course! The notebook to end all notebooks!

  14. I used to spend most of my summers with my grandma. She would take me to Walgreens and I could buy some things before I even got the school list. I always got to choose a book bag. I remember the first thing I picked out was one of those plastic transparent tote bags with the bright green, yellow and pink flowers (it was the early 70’s). My choice didn’t really fit in, and later I would always choose a briefcase style bag with the plastic handle and slide in clips. It had more pockets!

  15. While I LOVED getting new supplies (and I am STILL a slut for office supplies!!), I always loved the handouts and tests created with the purple mimeograph ink. (Yes, I am dating myself here as having gone to school during the dinosaur age).
    I have very distinct memories of the ENTIRE CLASS putting the handout on our collective faces and INHALING. That smell always meant school for me.

  16. School supply shopping was always my favorite time. My wife and I had passed that on to our daughter, but one of the churches in our town started providing the entire supply list for all the K-12 students in the district. Great for families with limited means, great for leveling the battles over brands, but not so great for the family ritual. There’s still plenty of potential for her, just without the seasonal connection.

    I remember one specific back to school shopping year very clearly. In sixth grade, we moved in October and the new school required an eight-pocket folder. Every class in one place, rather than each having it’s own folder, the plastic spiral binding holding the paperboard cover on, the solemnity of folding it over to the correct pocket when we moved between rooms. It seemed more significant because of its size, as if in moving to a new city, state, and school, I had leveled up. I insisted that I start using the stainless steel Zebras that my dad preferred to go along with my new status. That is my strongest childhood pen/stationery memory by far. With that in mind, I’m off to update another syllabus and chase that particular high again. 🙂

  17. Mine is a weird memory. Every year I would pick out a new backpack, I was always fascinated with the different designs you could get. That is probably why I have like 25 bags currently lol.

  18. My favorite back-to-school memory is always buying a new pack of yellow Ticonderoga pencils, cracking them open, and sharpening away. There’s nothing quite like a freshly sharpened pencil – the smell, the feel, and the beautiful, smooth line, except maybe a new Opus 88 Koloro… Although I’ve been out of school for years, I still love getting fresh pencils, pens, and paper.

  19. My favorite back to school thing to do was to pick out a new backpack. Most of the time I’d wear mine out by the end of the previous school year, so it was always great to peruse the walls of color (mostly Jansport bags) and pick one that suited me.

  20. The BEST part of back-to-school was ALWAYS the shopping for school supplies. Finding the perfect pens and pencils, notebooks, paper, and all the rest. I was addicted to writing and writing instruments from a very early age! 🙂

  21. When I was very young big box stores were not a thing yet so each August we headed to our small town stationery store that contained all the things on our teacher’s modest list….and so much more. It had wooden floors and floor to ceiling storage shelving and I just couldn’t imagine what all these papers and things could be used for! And one year, as I got older I was allowed to buy a cartridge pen! I can’t even remember what color I chose, but I do remember that 5th grade was the year of using Scrip Peacock Blue ink on almost everything.

  22. The first fountain pen I recall owning was a Parker 45 in olive green (a high-school graduation gift). This would match nicely.

  23. So many good stationery memories back then. The notebooks I would fill up with my hard work. The Uniball Onyx Micros that my dad always had in his shirt pocket after work. The pencil collection I amassed every time I did something well in class. My only regret was that I was too stingy in college. I should have at least bought a decent Pentel P205 and eraser stick and a pack of Uniball Onyx Micros for myself. Too busy playing the poor college student.

  24. There were wild raspberries in the woods near my father’s favorite fishing spot. While he fished, the rest of us would pick berries that my mother would turn into jam. The first day of school always marked the first day we could dip into the new season’s jam. Raspberry jam is still my favorite jam.

  25. As a kid, one of my favorite thing about back-to-school had to be the notebooks. Somewhere around 7th grade I “graduated” to college ruled wire-bound notebooks and I’d get a separate notebook in a different color for each class. Another fun ritual was cutting up brown paper grocery bags and creating book covers. I bet I could still make a decent book cover… 🙂

  26. I’ve always loved the smell of school! Pens, pencils, nice clean paper, notebooks to organize things in (that was before the day of backpacks and lovely pen pouches) – but the simple things were still so much fun!

  27. It was all about color-coding my class schedule, and making my notebooks and textbook covers all match. Red was for math, so I’d get a red notebook, and decorate the brown paper bag cover for the textbook in red, but I had to leave a lot of room for doodling during class. In pre-calculus, I’d even turn around and draw on my friend’s book cover, too. I’m honestly not sure how I got away with that, because I sat in the front row. shrug My friend kept her book cover long after that class. ❤️

  28. School supply memories? Where do I start? As a child of the 1950’s my school supply world was a little different than today. Lined filler paper of course but as I remember it was a little heavier (24 pound-ish?) than the tissue paper now being sold. I know, typical old codger who thinks his childhood was Nirvana. No, we had nowhere near the choice of today’s students. White paper, yellow pencils, 3-ring blue binders, and Bics, period. Maybe it was this deprivation that has made me a stationery fan today. One memory I will share is; we had to cover our textbooks, COVER! Mostly it was brown paper grocery bags but when mom would spring for printed covers, mostly big 10 college logos, we were “stylin'”. Does anybody say that anymore? Basically, be happy kids, someday you will be entering a contest to win hologram dates with Youtube stars and reminiscing about washi tape.

  29. It meant a new notebook – always a good thing, and catching up with friends about summer activities. It makes me miss my trusty Parker 25 I wrote with then.

  30. The new year will always be the beginning of September for me. None of this January nonsense! I loves the ritual buying of the school supplies, the careful starting of notebooks, the sheer, joyous potential of all those pages. That’s likely one of the reasons I’m a writer – I get to experience that even in my adulthood.
    Thanks for the give-away; fingers crossed!

  31. ooh… it’s been a while since my last back to school! I did love that my book covers were still in pristine condition tho…

  32. Like many I loved (and still do) shopping for supplies. Today I scope out the latest and greatest finds for my home office. Way back when….., we didn’t have back packs. We had rubber bungee straps. We had one week to cover our books – usually with properly cut grocery sacks. And we had to have a Sheaffer fountain pen for penmanship class. Thus began a lifetime love of fine writing instruments.

  33. I used to start every school year with a new Scripto mechanical pencil. Within a week it was lost. Now I have 6 or 8 vintage Scriptos in my collection, and I haven’t lost any yet!

  34. I know I’m not alone in this comment page in saying I liked shopping for school supplies! I love the green/yellow accent color on this pen.

    Reuniting with friends was fun, and I enjoyed summer reading more than most, but picking out gel pens and mechanical pencils (to say nothing of my Lisa Frank phase, or the truly awful writing utensils that were pencils with printed wrappers) brought great joy.

  35. I always looked forward to the new pair of shoes for back to school. Before the internet, it was difficult to find shoes in my size and when we did they were expensive so, while my feet were still growing, I only got new shoes when it was absolutely necessary…

  36. My mom always made waffles for my brothers and me on the first day of school.

    What a beautiful pen!

  37. In the younger school years, it was clothes shopping, aw the smell of new clothes. In College, it was trips to the student union gift shop for spiral notebooks.

    Somehow I missed out on Trapper Keeper. I don’t know if it was where I lived, or did it come out just after my secondary school years. Photos of the vintage ones look so cool.

    Thank you for the giveaway. I recently ordered an Opus 88 Picnic pen in (coffee) brown.

  38. Back-to-School shopping for all the new pens! and paper! and, when I got to high school, new Doc Martens or Vans Skate shoes was the best part of getting ready to go back to school. That and comparing what supplies we had all purchased with friends.

  39. I always enjoyed getting to pick my new pen. Typically, it was a Zebra .5 ballpoint. When I went off to college, I actually used a Pigma Micron 005, for most of my notes.

    (I write really small 🙂 )

    Thanks for the giveaway.

  40. I carried on my parent’s tradition of gifting a Schultüte on the first day of school to my daughters. But instead of candy…it was filled with unique stationary items. Way cooler than candy!!

  41. I have fond memories of going to Office Depot (or Staples) and picking up fresh binders and loose leaf paper for class, along with any pens or pencils we needed. Alas, if only I knew how deep the pen rabbit hole goes at that age!

  42. Remember those big fat pencils they gave us in 1st grade, oh…of course not, you’re too young!

  43. When I first became an elementary school principal, it was in a school district new to me, so I didn’t know any of the staff. In order to help the first meeting get off on a positive note, I wanted to have a ‘back-to-school’ gift for everyone. Browsing Staples for a while, I settled on mini yellow legal pads and an inexpensive but colorful pen. I was pleasantly surprised by how well the items were received. In fact, some teachers brought their mini legal pads to each staff meeting throughout the year as their way to keep notes. So for the next 18 years as a principal, I began each school year by shopping for mini legal pads and some writing implement, pen or pencil, as long as it was colorful or had something fun about it.

  44. My favorite ritual for Back To School was picking out a new date book to be my assignments journal. I would do SO MUCH research before choosing one.

  45. Hmm the favourite back to school rituals – finding and putting together the stationary for the year. The girls and I would go looking for just the ‘right’ stuff then sit and unpack everything. Organise the folders, paper and pen cases, cover the books. ‘Coo’ and ‘ahh’ over each others finds. There is always an optimism about new books and pen cases.

  46. I always looked forward to shopping for school supplies. New pencils, notebooks and Sheaffer cartridge fountain pens in different colors.

  47. My mom used to have a limited budget for my back to school shopping. This budget did not include uniforms, lunch boxes etc. So, for me it still felt like a lot of money. I would buy exactly what was on the school list and nothing extra and would save some money for fun things. My favorite was this one type of Notebook called Lekakh book (which was a bit expensive) and Hero Fountain pen. I still remember the first Hero pen and Camlin Black Ink. The sac filling system was not great, but it was fun. Basically, since Middle school – I bought a Stationary book and Hero Pen as my back to school fun things. Thanks for this giveaway and a good walk back into the memory lane.

  48. On the first day of first grade, no kindergarten back then (when the dinosaurs roamed), I met a fellow adventurer. We dared to explore allll the way to the huge old live oak tree in far back end of the school yard during lunch break that day. That yard must have been 5 acres, or so it seems even now. It was a bright sunny lazy-feeling September afternoon and for reasons that escape me to this day, he and I decided to lie down in the grass and take a nap.

    Never heard that bell to return to class. We mustn’t have missed it by much though, for when we raced back to the classroom (glass walls facing the playground), we could see from far away everyone in the class lined up at the windows watching. And laughing. Even worse, the teacher locked us out!! She pointed sternly and said loudly “TO THE OFFICE! NOW!”

    He and I remained friends for many years afterwards, bound in our wicked ways. Mama was not happy when she was told by the teacher about this the next day, but daddy laughed.

    I can still remember the smell of fresh mown grass on the dewy fall mornings. It’s one of my favorite smells to this day.

  49. So fun to read all these comments! I can’t believe someone beat me to mentioning earth shoes. And I remember cutting up grocery bags to make covers for the school textbooks. I think my favorite part was getting the new books, whether they were new or re-used. It seems like I can remember the smells of all these things.

  50. Absolute favorite back to school thing was and is school supply shopping! The smell of new paper, and pencils, and crayons…. is there anything better?

  51. I of course love school supplies, but my favorite school thing involving this was reorganizing my supplies. I’m a messy person so stuff ends up everywhere, but there is nothing quite so satisfying as taking everything out and putting all back nice again. Somehow my bags feel lighter even though I mostly put everything back in.

  52. I see I’m not the only one whose favorite part of going back to school was getting new school supplies. And putting covers on my textbooks! Even as a kid, I was a stationery nerd!

  53. My favorite memory was picking out a new lunchbox. The backpack was okay, but the lunchbox was critically important.

  54. We would drive 5 hours to the big city of Denver to do our school shopping. Pens, pencils, paper, rulers, clothes, and shoes. We would also visit a museum while we were in town. Once we went to the botanic gardens, rolled down a grassy slope, and rolled enough to make ourselves sick.

  55. It’s actually a beautiful pen I’ve been eyeing since before it came out. My memory of going back to school was the same every semester and I never learned, I always started a new diet and waited the entire first day for somebody to compliment me. Of course it never happened and I got over it but next semester come around, I would spend the last few weeks of Summer break trying to lose weight. >.< so dumb!

  56. I remember having to write my name or label everything by hand! (Every pencil, every item of clothing…)

  57. My favorite back to school memory is going shopping for a few new dresses. I was the oldest so I got new ones. My siblings had to wear hand me downs. 🙂 oh! and of course, getting new school supplies!

  58. The Almighty Trapper Keeper of course! It was so vitally important to get the obscure cool one. Then all the things I “needed” as well. To be a great student & brilliant scientist (in 3rd grade) I had to have a clear ruler, protractor, compass and somehow convinced my mom I needed a french curve set.

    Office supply junkie to this day….

  59. My mother introduced me, at an early age, to the love for a good pen with a dark, clear line. When it was time to shop for school supplies, no mediocre pens would do, nor wimpy paper, either. I wanted crisp, clear lines on my pristinely white notebook paper, and pens that wrote with a fine, clear line. I savored the hunt every year. School and office supply stores were heavenly places to me and having that excuse to be there before the beginning of the school year made me giddy.

    At home, I would clean out my desk of all summer debris and organize it with my new supplies. I loved this ritual, loved admiring my new notebooks, pens, mechanical pencil and extra lead and erasers in their handy little containers. If I start the year organized, I remained organized throughout the quarter.

    Thanks for this giveaway. It’s a great pen line.

  60. First week in a new school, my parents who were police officers; would drive and drop me off at school from the back of the police van.

  61. Ah, the mimeograph machine. I remember that smell and the pale blue/purple ink. I’m still on the hunt for a fountain pen ink that replicates that color just because it brings back so many fond memories of school.

  62. My favorite part of back to school was the new notebooks and folders for each class. Knowing that everything was neatly organized and ready to go only was exciting to me. Unfortunately the order never stuck and became a random mess within a month.

  63. My favorite back to school memory wasn’t about shopping for new clothes or supplies. It was all about getting as much time on my bike with my neighborhood pals before school started. We could feel the time ticking on our summer vacation clocks and we would wake up early and go home late for weeks. Breaking that ritual, by returning to school, meant we had to be more stealthy and hide from family around the neighborhood before being snatched to go to the mall. It was the best of times.

  64. My favorite back-to-school memory is shopping for supplies like notebooks, pens & pencils, binders, etc. Nothing like having a perfect, untouched stash of school supplies to start off the year! And of course I had to decorate my binder with plenty of pictures to let everyone know how “cool” I was!

  65. Autumn has always been my favorite time of year, probably because it was also time to go back to school. Ah, the fresh notebooks, the new pens and pencils and let’s not forget NEW CLOTHES! Oh, and the new guys as well……

  66. My favorite part of the back to school ritual was picking out my backpack and packing it up for the first day. I didn’t get a new backpack every year, but I loved when I got to pick out a new one; shopping for them was all the best parts of getting new clothes and new toys all in one. I didn’t find nice things to put in my backpacks until college…but now pens are a similar sort of shopping experience!

  67. When I was in school. The smell of crayons always put me in an auspicious mood. But then seeing those dreaded yellow buses was a sign for me the end was near.

  68. Fresh supplies and starting a new school year was always a good combination. New horizons and fresh supplies for the journey. I remember when I switched from ballpoint pens to a Scheaffer fountain pen. How elegant it was.

  69. I would love to win this! I always enjoyed buying my new pack of G2 pens for school – my go to before discovering the wonder of fountain pens!

  70. I remember walking down the isles of the store with my parents and siblings looking for a trapper keeper to call my own for that school year. I’m so grateful that, even though my parents struggled financially in my childhood, we (the children) never lacked.

  71. I became a teacher in part because of my enduring love of school supplies, and just like in grade school I still get myself excited about school starting by buying new pens and notebooks. That pen would make a great addition to my back to school plans!

    1. In my family, we would go buy a new pair of Keds gym shoes for school. Then we would go get school supplies. When I discovered mechanical pencils in 4th grade, I was never interested in wood pencils ever again.

  72. My most prominent memory has to have been not having any sort of routine and effectively avoiding the excess of supplies that the teacher so fervently pushed upon us. I had always appreciated the facet of design associated with writing utensils – something not seen elsewhere in the industry of stationary.

  73. When I was in fifth and sixth grade parachute pants was all I wore. Some of my friends left me know that nobody in junior high wore them and I’d probably get teased about them. So when my mom took me back to school shopping we bought the first jeans I had worn in years and I was amazed at how comfortable they were. My mom wouldn’t let me wear them out of the house except to church until the first day of school. I remember the anticipation of the first day of seventh grade the most.

  74. My thing was to go in early on the first day to be able to select the seat in the classroom because that became your seat for the entire year. Also, it gave you the chance to try to get to choose who you sat with as seating was set up as pairs.

  75. I got my very first fountain pen from a Walmart at back to school time. It was a parker, and it sucked. …and if I’m not mistaken, I may have shoplifted it.

  76. I know I always loved school supplies, but the thing I actually remember the most was that I always got new shoes for the first day of school and my mom made me a new dress.

  77. Totally remember always eating breakfast in McDonald’s at 6 in the morning in Japan right before post doc school and getting the extremely salty salmon breakfast set it was the only time to feel solace in the quietness in Tokyo.

  78. Fresh school supplies were the best…it was also fun to decorate polios with tape to make them last longer

  79. My favorite memory of getting back to school was waiting for the bus and catching up with all my friends. I always loved getting back to school, the new clothes, new teacher, new books! Fund times 🙂

  80. Our routine was like most. My mom would take my brother and I out shopping for new school clothes and of course notebooks/pencils/etc. My favorite part was organizing all of the new notebooks in preparation for classes to start. I usually had some kind of binder that I would set up for each class.

  81. I loved shopping for new school supplies, especially as I usually went back to visit my grandparents in China during the summer and got to get a lot of cute stationery, pencils, notebooks, etc. My grandma would shop with me and browse all the little stores and help me 😉 I also enjoyed decorating my planner with stickers and putting in all my friends’ birthdays and important dates!

  82. My favorite memories have been buying all our school supplies. Everything is brand new like our hopes for a good school year.

  83. My favorite back to school ritual is one we do with my kids. When they were first starting kindergarten, we bought them large adult t shirts and put their graduation year on them. Every year, we bring out the shirts on their first day back and take their picture in them so that we can see just how much bigger they have gotten.

  84. Not surprisingly, for a pen and paper nerd, I still carry within me the smell of fresh notebooks and pencil shavings,the feel of my red schoolbag with the shiny gold buckle. I was a skinny kid, so walking to school, my schoolbag felt like the anchor that kept me from blowing away in the wind. To this day, I can’t avoid strolling through back to school sales every year to soak in the memories.

  85. The year I was starting kindergarten, my mother was pregnant. She went into labor the day before orientation, so my 50 something year old grandmother had to take me to it instead. Grandma got a kick out of telling everyone about the reactions of the 20 something moms when she walked in with me and they all assumed she was my mom.

  86. I distinctly remember the first time I was just okay with school starting. Instead of crying or breaking down with stress, I just accepted it and wanted to get the week over with

  87. My favorite back to school memory was the first time I went back to school not as a student but as a teacher. My mom had been a teacher while I was growing up and I was very proud to be carrying on our family tradition, not to mention how excited I was to have the opportunity to work in such a noble profession. And, of course, it was so much better to finally be the one giving out the homework and tests!

  88. Favorite back to school memory is about getting all the new supplies and clothing. in my day that was a new shirt and one new pair of jeans along with 2 #2 pencils and a box of crayons. Seems to pale by today’s requirements for iPad and computers. Things were simpler back then, bullet proof back packs were not needed as all issues were settled on the playground in just a few punches.

  89. I am entering college this year, but one of my favorite memories was picking out a new blue ink bottle every year since 7th grade, when I first got a fountain pen. I remember I got Waterman Blue, and then Lamy Blue for th rest of the years.

  90. Back in middle School i was getting into ac/dc and the likes, so i wanted to go to my first day “back in Black.” So i made my mom get me all black everything. Black pants, underwear, shirt, socks, shoes, backpack, everything. It was great.

  91. I always liked going to the store with my mom and looking at all the different office supplies. And I enjoyed sharpening my yellow #2 pencils, and the smell of graphite and shaved wood.

  92. I am going to date myself but my favorite back to school memory: Getting a new book satchel. I guess that they fell out of favor and the companies stopped making them because after fourth grade; they were no where to be found. They were like a large messenger bag.

  93. I absolutely loved the first day of school and all the new goodies in the backpack. Fresh sneakers, full size pencils, because all the others were worn to the eraser and the energy in the halls!

    I’ll never forget the first time I saw one of those pens with all the different ink colors in it, so cool!

  94. Back to school means taking my dear daughter pens shopping. It has become our annual tradition. She has found a love of fountain pens at an early age.

  95. My favorite memory is opening up my pen case on the first day of school with all my new pens and inks to show to all my friends; this summer I’ve bought over 20 new pens and inks…

  96. I don’t think anything can beat the feel of walking to school on an early fall morning. There’s all the promise of the new year, the air is fresh and cool, and everything feels perfect.

  97. Unlike most of these comments, when I was young I didn’t just love buying pens! That came later when I realized what I was missing!

    My favorite memory was the last day of elementary school when my friends and I during recess tried to “break” all the rules from the last 6 years. This may sound bad but it consisted of taking our shoes off and running in the halls, which makes it so much better of a story that we we just thought we were being so bad!

  98. My favorite back to school memory was finding excuses to buy new school supplies even though I didn’t need to, as we’d usually have leftovers from previous years. I’d always love the smell of fresh pencils and later, pens.

  99. In elementary school, we had to cover our text books. I remember making book covers out of brown grocery bags and writing the subject on each book cover in marker.

    1. My favorite memory is when buying new notebooks and then my mother and I wraped the cover with paper and plastic so they lasted more.

  100. I really love the smell of fresh school supplies, mostly the vinyl binders. It gives me the butterflies-in-my-stomach feeling of anticipation/excitement about the coming semester and what I will learn!

  101. Each new year in elementary school meant a new pencil case, new pencils, and – best of all – a new box of crayons. Everyone usually got the smallest box of eight colors, but we always envied those who somehow got the box of twelve or the extravagant box of sixteen colors. I can still remember the smell of new crayons – intoxicating!

  102. My favorite back-to-school memory was shopping for new school clothes. (I still love shopping, even though I’ve not attended school in 45 years)

  103. I was a classroom teacher for a number of years, and my favorite back to school memory is the first day back in the classroom for work days, prepping the room, coming up with creative ideas for daily routines that would make the students feel welcome when they arrived, and bouncing ideas around with the other teachers.

  104. Going back to school was a little sad, because of summer and the fun being over.
    But the week before was all about getting ready for school, back to school shopping and preparing school books (wrapping them in Plastic covers) and ruling the notebooks vertically with red pens on both sides… that is always a good memory.

  105. My ritual was to buy a fresh 3 ring binder, some nice reinforced hole paper, and divide them by subject.

  106. I used to be kind of down that is get sick every year when school started up again. It took years to figure out that I just had seasonal allergies.

  107. I LOVED shopping to school supplies! It’s no wonder I have so many pens and notebooks today.

    But my favorite memory is that on the first day of school every year I would come home to fresh baked chocolate chip cookies from my mom. It was the best!

  108. That nervous feeling of not knowing your teachers was always my favorite, especially when the teachers turn out to be your favorite.

  109. I was a member of the Trapper-Keeper generation. There was nothing like buying a brand new one at the beginning of the year and then gradually doodling it up over the course of the next mine months.

  110. My favorite back to school memory didn’t start off so great. I was in the tenth grade and had to have a graphing calculator for my Precalculus class. After I spent practically all of my savings to buy it I took my TI-84 plus out of the packaging and couldn’t even imagine how to get started. I fumbled around and after a bit I was able to do a few equations but I was still apprehensive about my first day of class. When the day arrived I sat next to a kid that was very preoccupied with his calculator. He was furiously tapping away at his directional pad and as I looked at his screen I saw that he was playing Tetris. I was blown away I asked him to show me how to do that, He said sure and after school I went to his house so we could upload the software onto my calculator. On that day I gained a new friend and was no longer intimidated by my graphing calculator.

  111. I was home schooled year round pretty much so we didn’t have ‘back to school’ but shopping for new books and school supplies was always fun. I’ve always loved stationery and all related items so of course coordinating notebooks and pouches were a must. It’s part of the reason I was able to graduate early and when I did go to vocational school I had all the tools I needed and more.

    Thank you for the opportunity to share a glimpse of my experience with you & for providing the pen loving community with your insights/experience.

  112. The excitement of just planning for school often left my sleepless for days prior to the first day. Knowing I wouldn’t have to deal with my step father for most of the day was one of the few highlights of my youth

  113. My favorite back-to-school memory: buying school supplies. My birthday is at the end of August, so unfortunately, a lot of my back-to-school items doubled as birthday gifts.

  114. Moving from Philly to Mt. Pleasant, SC for High School. I was stunned by the college campus setting of my new HS vs my urban setting!

  115. I’ve run out of ink a couple of times this Summer, think I need a bigger reservoir too!
    Used to love thinking I had everything a kid could need in my satchel, never did make much use of that set square though.

  116. My favorite school memory was always knowing that the first day of class was going to be very casual and laid back and nothing to worry about. And all the new clothes I would get in preparation. 🙂

  117. The first I used a fountain pen was in 3rd grade. It scratched at the paper rather than writing on it! What a frustration. It wasn’t till I was an adult that I discovered the true beauty of writing with a proper fountain pen. Be seeing you.

  118. My favorite memories are shopping for new backpacks. I’m a middle aged man now and still love buying backpacks.

  119. I really liked having all my #2 pencils sharpened and in a case that went into my 3 ring binder, the smell of my Elmer’s glue (and we won’t talk about purposely leaving glue on my fingertips to peel off and see my fingerprints)and collecting/cutting paper grocery bags that were used as book covers. I really liked the clean look of my stacked books covered un paper before the got all scuffed up or written on.

  120. I’ll go with the suddenly sharp memory of my Red Tartan plastic school bag, complete with its brace of tuck clasps.

    Ooh, la, was I stylin’.

    Thank you for the chance at this fine pen!

  121. My favorite memory is of the rustling of papers as the teacher hand out papers or assignments and the smell of the classroom. It always reminded me of my grandparents who were both teachers.

  122. I loved picking out a new lunchbox. No dents, working hinges and closures, and you could still see the superhero’s face on the side of it. And the thermos didn’t stink yet!

  123. Getting the school supply list was something that I eagerly looked forward to, To this day, I still love going up and down the office supply aisles and seeing the notebooks, pens, pencils and drawing sets. As an Art student, there was an added dimension of drool worthy tools to obsess over. So much gear, so little cash…

  124. In high school I always liked going and picking out a cute folder for each class. Nothing says I’m ready for algebra like a bright unicorn!

  125. I used to cover my big textbooks with kraft paper from paper grocery bags and then draw all over them with my colored pencils! And when I was done, I’d “laminate” them with clear shipping tape 😛 Nobody ever mistook my zany-looking textbooks for theirs, LOL! It was technically done as a protective measure, because we sold the books back at the end of the school year to save money, but I really enjoyed the decorating process 🙂

  126. I always loved the promise of new notebooks, binders, folders and pens. And trying different systems each year for my note taking.

  127. 2 rituals (1) dragging behind our junker pick up the new stuff denim tied up in knots through the mud and muck multiple wash cycles to “soften’em up” (2) the long week end before class started dad would take us rough camping – Bud’s bonding

  128. I never actually had a “back to school” thing, I was homeschooled, so school was year round.

  129. I loved picking out the perfect first day outfit and then challenge of trying to cram every single school supply into my backpack. And then the feeling of success as a 90lb kid carrying an equally heavy backpack bursting at the seams.

  130. I was a teacher for 32 years- kindergarten thru eighth grade. I loved welcoming my students to class at the beginning of each year…and lived seeing their brand new school supplies. My favorites were always the pens and notebooks. The very last two years I taught a calligraphy club- and that was totally awesome. The kids loved learning cursive and other fonts using fountain pens. Whenever I get the opportunity – I show ppl my fountain pens and have given away quite a few entry level pens. I would love to actually win this one- it’s beautiful! Thanks for the chance!

  131. As I stand on the precipice of my 62nd year on this planet, I most likely am older than many of those reading/commenting here. As a kid, before ballpoint became the affordable replacement, cartridge pens were your only option, which meant ink blots in the middle of essays and soo much more!

    Back-to-school meant new school supplies and for a poor kid, this rated right up there with Christmas! I loved the newness of notebooks and a new fountain pen! I treasured my pens back then and I still love the feel of a new fountain pen today. Getting to know one another as you spend time together. Good stuff!!

  132. My favorite ritual about getting ready for school was from elementary school and jr. high: the Saturday before school started, my dad would take me into town to the barber shop to get my head buzzed clean.

  133. Throughout grade school, I always loved setting up my bag for the first day of school. Everything was in its place ready to go. Probably led to my passion for fountain pens and orderly notes.

  134. Putting my binder together! I always loved setting up my dividers and putting my supplies in the plastic insert, doomed to be messed up in the first day, but still so satisfying!

  135. There was one back-to-school ritual that I looked forward to every year: sugur cereal. Mom would let my sister and me pick out one cereal each to eat the morning of that first day. Amazing! Half of the flavors I chose don’t even exist anymore.

  136. In high school it was my job to make my mom her coffee before she drove us to school… so the few weeks before school started again, we’d be hitting up cafes and tasting things to decide what she felt like that fall.

    I miraculously never developed a caffeine sensitivity despite this.

  137. I remember when girls were finally allowed to wear pants in the public school system in my town. I got a pair of hip-hugger bell bottoms and watched my September morning shadow all the way to the bus stop.

  138. I loved shopping for new clothes and supplies. My birthday usually occurred during “back to school” so I always scored some extra special things.

  139. My favorite back-to-school memory is going to the store to buy new school supplies. That enjoyment has given way to my passion for fountain pens, inks and journals.

  140. I remember my mom taking me back-to-school shopping at a neighborhood store called Lewis’ of Woodhaven. It was one of my favorite days of the year. They had one big room with all their back-to-school wares in it, and I loved walking around the room getting a new backpack, pencil case, lunchbox (Metal! With thermos!), box of crayons (64!), binder, looseleaf paper, and all the other necessities. Oh, how I loved back to school — one of the reasons I love using fountain pens is that it gives me an excuse to go out every Fall, as I did when I were a lad, and buy school supplies.

  141. My favorite back-to-school ritual was buying brand new school supplies and then hand-making a new box to keep those supplies in. We usually took an old shoe box or cigar box, lined it with felt and then wrapped the box in wrapping paper. (I can trace my pen addiction directly back to those back-to-school shopping trips!)

  142. Getting to pick out new gym shoes was always exciting, on top of the excitement of new pens and pencils and notebooks. It allowed you to think about the excitement you would have running and playing with friends, some whom you had hardly seen all summer. As I got older there was still a sense of excitement to getting new gym shoes.

  143. My favorite back to school memory is the seasonal shift. I love the feeling of late summer/early fall when it’s cool at night and really sunny and clear all day. I love back to school time!

    Thanks for hosting a giveaway!

  144. I work as a custodian for a school district, so my favorite memories involving the start of school is just that brief period where everything is perfect. The floors all shine, the classrooms are spotless, and everything is in its place.

  145. Okay, it’s not stationery-related, but I was in the school band all through high school. My junior year, over the summer, I got a silver cornet (imagine a pocket-pen-trumpet). The silver was gorgeous, and the sound was beautiful. It was a delight to play.

  146. Thanks for having this giveaway! I was always excited to make a list of back to school needs. We were poor, so we didn’t always get the highest quality or coolest stuff but my Mom always made sure we had everything and some new clothes and sneakers for the first day back.

  147. I remember this one semester where I enrolled in a health class. I was very nervous, as I always am when starting a new class, that I would be in the wrong room, or even worse the wrong building. So to avoid that embarrassment I look up the room number for my classes each semester and go find them about a week before the semester starts. I had never taken a class in this building before so I was extra nervous this time. The first day of the class arrived and I walk over to the room where the class is listed to take place. I sat down near the door, as the room was Locked. I wasn’t unnerved by this because a fair number of other students were waiting outside the door as well.

    My nerves were lessened even more as one of the other students makes small talk with me. Finally the teacher arrives and opens the classroom. We all file in and take a seat. Then the teacher writes the name and number of the class on the board, and I’m a little confused. I had enrolled in a basic health class, not a women’s health class. The panic starts to set in, but then it subsides as another student asks where the regular health class is supposed to be. The teacher must have noticed that a fair amount of students were eager to hear the answer because she asked how many of us were here for that class. I think there was about 10 of us who raised our hands. The teacher then directed us to the desk that would let us know where our class actually was. So lesson learned, double check the room number the day of classes, because it might change.

  148. I remember we went shopping for a few new clothes and a pair of new shoes, I also got a new binder with paper (Remember nifty binders?), and a new pen and pencils. The year I got a compass and protractor was pretty special, too bad I had to use them for math!

  149. An absolutely beautiful fountain pen.
    Favorite memory: Buying a Mead Trapper Keeper with more pockets and paper than I had ever seen before. Truth be told I did not use all of the paper, but the Trapper Keeper was COOL ! 🙂

  150. My favorite memory is from second grade when my parents helped me to cover the new textbooks in different types of colorful paper to keep the books protected throughout the year.

  151. My favorite memory is that we used to cover our books with cut-up brown-paper grocery bags, and then color the new covers with crayons.

  152. My favorite part of returning to school was seeing friends who I hadn’t been able to spend time with during the break and favorite teachers who I hadn’t seen all summer. Some of those relationships were no longer the same, but being together again taught me the importance of spending time with people I care about and the importance of making an effort to stay in touch.

  153. My favourite ritual is probably figuring out my go-to school supplies for the year, whether that be a new set of pens, special notebooks, or a nice new pen roll to keep things organized.

  154. My sisters and I had stretchy covers for our textbooks, reusing them year to year. But for fourth grade we had the old-fashioned teacher who thought all stretchy book covers stuck to the books, and required handmade paper book covers. I think most of my classmates had plain brown paper, but not me. My mom covered the books with wrapping paper! I don’t remember most of the designs, but one was jungle themed, covered in lush green leaves, big tigers every few inches. Mom made the folds crisp and the contact paper smooth and free of bubbles. Definitely the best my textbooks ever looked.

  155. September often meant a new school for me —my family moved a lot due to my father’s job, so the first day of classes brought the extra anxiety of being the new girl. Shopping for school supplies was a welcome distraction. While the outfit was always a source of stress — who knew what would be considered “cool” in an unknown place — fresh notebooks and pens, novelty post-its, highlighters, and colourful erasers were a salve. The most important thing? A new day planner. It always gave me something to focus on during that first morning, sitting at my desk, surrounded by strangers. Picking a new planner is still one of my favourite fall rituals.

  156. My favourite back to school ritual is getting to purchase all the wonderful supplies and a new lunch box. Even now as an adult I try to pick up a new lunch box at the start of school.
    This is such a gorgeous pen. Good luck to everyone.

  157. My favorite back to school ritual is getting all my notebooks and folders together, with color coordination for each subject, and getting some new supplies.

  158. I’m surprised more comments haven’t been about the excitement of getting to see friends whom you hadn’t see all Summer. Looking back on my school days, I remember that being one of the few reasons I wanted the Summer to end. Had I the chance to do it over again, knowing what I know now as an adult, I’d have made a much greater effort to spend time with those friends while out of school. After graduating, it seems like we all parted ways and started down different roads. Anyway…

    Beautiful pen and I figured I might as well throw my name in the bucket for the giveaway. Best of luck to all who comment.

  159. I used to quickly scan the class supply list for that year and hope for paints and art supplies to be on the list… I loved shopping for school supplies especially art supplies!

  160. My favorite back to school memories where picking out new school supplies. Even then I was particular about my papers and pens! Go figure!

  161. I just went wherever my parents told me to go; I’m not sure I ever prepared for back to school in advance. “Oh, it’s a school day again!”

  162. As an early elementary school kid, I think my biggest concerns were whether my blue jeans were properly folded at the bottom and if my sneakers (usually US Keds high tops) would measure up to the other guys. Fountain pens were not yet on the horizon.

  163. I used to love going to the store with my mom and buying a new binder, pencils, and erasers. Back then, we used fountain pens in school. I didn’t like the pens at all because I knew it was only a question of when it would leak ink on my clothes or things in my book bag (the ultra cool faux denim sack carried over the shoulder!)

  164. Mine was definitely polishing my black leather school shoes so they were clean and shiny for the first day back at school. The sounds of the brush on leather and the smell of polish still linger in my mind!

  165. Buying new pencils, pens, and notebooks – it seemed like every year I had my heart set on something different.

  166. Back in college, I used to love buying new copies of this engineering graph pad that I use for my all my homework assignments. It was amazing but this was back when I only used pencil!

  167. My favorite (goofy) memory of back to school was not so much the shopping for stuff, but rather, the never anticipated results of that shopping. We all pretty much got inexpensive Shaeffer pens with Shaeffer cartridges and we pretty quickly figured out that if you flicked a pen at someone ink would spurt their way. We thought this was a pretty good use of a fountain pen. Teachers and parents, not so much.
    Adam Rodman

  168. I’m still in school, and I got into fountain pens a year and a half ago. When I started this past year of school, I couldn’t wait to use my newfound hobby, which has turned writing into one of my favorite things to do.

  169. I got a brand new pack of pencils at the beginning of every school year. They weren’t anything special, but I loved them.

  170. I remember getting our textbooks as a child and covering them in books covers. My dad would use paper grocery bags. Then we would spend the first week decorating them.

  171. Love to go buy new pencils for a new school year. When you put a new point on them and smell that fresh
    wood smell is the best.

  172. Home room was my time to either finish my homework or clear my mind so I could finally concentrate (hypothetically)

  173. Not necessarily a favorite memory, but a strong one. The first or second day of second grade my mother was pulling out of the driveway to take em to school when suddenly she was stopped by a neighbor walking by. She told me that she would only be a minute and I should stay buckled in to the car. After an agonizing wait (which must have been fifteen seconds) I became curious if the cigarette lighter still worked when the car was off (this was the early 90s) and so I pushed it in, took it out, and decided to test with my left index finger. Needles to say that her conversation was cut short by a crying child. We ran back inside, cared for my burn, and then went off to school (that’s my memory of it anyway, as a parent now I’m certain she didn’t just put some ice on it and throw me in a class room, but perspective is so different at that age.) This was the same year that I gave myself a permanent scar on the same finger while trying to sharpen coloring pencils with a paring knife. Luckily the rest of my school days weren’t so accident prone.

  174. Back in the day, my school required us to cover our notebooks and textbooks with clear plastic adhesive sheet. I guess they thought the kids would do a real number on the books. My favourite memory though is sitting through this, surprisingly long, process with my dad. Painstakingly measuring, cutting, measuring, cutting.

  175. My birthday is in late August, which is back-to-school season in my neck of the woods.
    That means there was always a 100% chance that I’d be getting school supplies for my birthday.
    While you might be thinking, “well that sucks,” in real life that means I 100% associate back-to-school sales with birthday parties and cake.

    I remember spending waaay too much time selecting the perfect stationary supplies (do I want the Lisa Frank rainbow panda or the Lisa Frank golden retreiver puppy wearing sunglasses? What the heck? Why not both!).

    I’m a grown-up now, but now we’re buying the Lisa Frank folders and pencils for my daughter.

    … which, btw, they’re still making Lisa Frank stuff?? Who knew.

  176. The thing I recall most was starting fresh with unmarked notebooks and newly sharpened pencils. Then I had to use them and the spell was broken

  177. I still remember the oh-so-hip pantsuit that my mother made for 3rd grade. I wore it and on the first day of school, tore a hole in the knee. Even more than the love my mom put into sewing me back-to-school clothes, the way she instantly forgave my clumsiness and showered me with more love is one of my favorite memories.

    This is really none of my business and feel free to ignore it, but how did Bob get that fascinating scar on his ring finger?

    1. Never cheat the pen Yakuza.

      Actually, it was a case of me trying to outsmart the safety device on an industrial cutter at a Kinko’s I worked at in Albuquerque. These cutters have a 2-step operation; (1) drop pressure clamp, (2) knife drop. Long story, but I got my fingertip pinched by pressure clamp, and it kinda crushed the tip.
      Also, I learned that no job is worth risking your health or safety.

      Well, no job that involves trimming tri-fold sales brochures.

      1. Ouch! So glad your finger survived! I empathize. I’ve slammed my finger in a locked car door (keys inside, me outside) and crushed it between garage door panels (surprisingly painful)…

  178. Back to school mean different parts of often different buildings and the new challenge of negotiating them. The most important challenge for us working-class types was where to find possible places where we could sneak into so that we could enjoy our break time fags (cigarettes). Yes, those were the days!

  179. The night before school started I would lay out all of my new, shiny school supplies and carefully pack them into my new backpack. It was always such a giddy time of year for me.

  180. Like everyone else, I loved going to the office supply store to get ready for school. I have found memories of my trap door pencil boxes and my Trapper Keeper.

  181. I always loved putting all my supplies into my bookbag really nice and organized the night before the first day of school. I would fill my binders with looseleaf, sharpen pencils, etc. I was such a nerd!

  182. My favorite memory from getting ready for school was figuring out which days I would take lunch from home, brown bagging it, or getting the school lunch pizza. There was this snappy excitement from waiting for the school lunch calendar to arrive in the mail at the end of Summer. When that calendar came, goodness, it was fantasizing about the 2 or 3 days a month I would splurge on some really unhealthy school pizza! School: more than a book learning experience.

  183. My favorite back-to-school memory is shopping for school supplies: pens, pencils, sharpeners, notebooks, Trapper Keepers, folders, etc.

  184. My favorite back to school memory is cutting and taping brown paper grocery bags to make covers for my textbooks. And writing the subject and my name in black sharpie marker.

  185. Like many people, shopping for school supplies was often more exciting than school. I especially loved finding something new that I had never seen before. I particularly enjoyed the few times we went to the teacher-supply store. They had pens I’d never seen before and have hardly seen since.

  186. I always loved back-to-school shopping as a kid, but I will never forget doing it as a teacher. Having my own money to buy things I wanted was like a whole new world and that was when I really started to get into stationery: planners and the best pens and notebooks and highlighters. And absolutely no guilt about trying everything I wanted to because anything I didn’t like or use or I had too many of, I could pass on to students who didn’t have everything they needed. I stopped teaching 5 years ago and I still get nostalgic for it every August.

  187. My favorite memory was seeing who was going to be in my class that year! That, and the inevitable purchasing of school supplies.

    Thanksto you and Appelboom for the giveaway!

  188. When I was a child in the 1950s (yep!), I would become bored in school and begin to dismantle my fountain pens. Fountain pens were required then and ballpoints considered de trop. I always had ink on my hands but was rather famous for being able to get other kids’ pens to work (mostly Schaeffers) sometimes using my teeth. I also sat at my desk and completely disassembled and reassembled my Boucher watch. It still works.

  189. Getting a day out, just Mom and me. A visit to Sear and the mall for clothes and shoes, the lunch at “grown up” restaurant, then Ben Franklin for notebooks, pens, folders, paper, and all that fun stuff before heading home.

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