Tag Archives: Stationery

Tomoe River Paper Notebooks

I hope you enjoyed the last blog post on our visit to Coach House Press! We certainly enjoyed looking around, but the visit was especially exciting because we got to pick up a project we’ve been working on with John.

We’ve had Tomoe River paper for a while – it’s this ultra thin but ink resistant paper, kind of like the feeling of Bible paper, but because of its ink resistance, there’s very little feather or bleedthrough. It’s crinkly and delicious and kind of reminiscent of airmail paper. You can see some more photos of ink on it here.

Previously we’ve only had the paper available in A4 loose leaf sheets. This is great for writing letters or correspondence, but not so convenient to carry around with you.

Once we began carrying Coach House Press notebooks, we figured we would ask if they could do anything with this super thin and super light paper.

Tomoe River Notebooks in Canada Wonder Pens wonderpens.ca

Tomoe River Notebooks in Canada Wonder Pens wonderpens.ca

We now have Tomoe River Paper Notebooks in two sizes, an A5 and an 11 x 21 cm one that will fit your Midori Regular Size Traveler’s Notebook.

One of the biggest advantages of this 11 x 21 cm notebook is that you can now fit more notebooks or accessories into your Traveler’s Notebook without it bulging because the paper is so thin.

Tomoe River Notebooks in Canada Wonder Pens wonderpens.ca

Each notebook has 64 pages and is trimmed and staple-bound right here in Toronto. Despite how thin the notebooks feel (with still 64 pages!), you can also feel how strong and almost heavy the paper is inside, because it’s so dense, if that makes sense. The sizing on the Tomoe River paper is excellent, but keep in mind that it will take longer to dry!

If dry time is a problem for you, consider getting a sheet of J. Herbin Blotting Paper to put in-between pages as you close up your notebook, absorbing any wet ink while marking your page. One piece of this blotting paper will last you a very long time, and as you use it, it will just get more and more little spots of ink.

Tomoe River Paper Notebooks Canada Toronto Wonderpens.ca Wonder Pens OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe A5 notebook and the 11 x 21 notebook are available in limited quantities, since the Tomoe River paper is a little hard to come by. We’re hoping with interest, we may make a few other sizes, but each new size requires set costs in addition to the binding.

If you’re a fountain pen user, and particularly a fountain pen ink lover with those broad and double broad nibs, the Tomoe River paper is something you definitely have to at least try, just to see the shading and sheen of those inks.

 

 

Gotamago Paper Goods – Cards for All Occasions

Customers sometimes ask if we carry cards, especially if they are in a bit of a rush on their way to a celebration, and we’ve only ever had are the blank card sets from G. Lalo. While I still love these G. Lalo cards, since they are super with fountain pens, and they’re an elegant way to drop a quick note, there’s just something about having a card to wish someone a happy birthday or tell them you love them.

It took us a while to get our act together, as we seem to always have more than a few balls in the air, but when Lichia Liu presented her beautiful and funny Gotamago cards, we knew this was the line for us. 

Gotamago cards at Wonder Pens Toronto

This card, with the phrase “Text less, write more” epitomizes our whole business! Take the time to select a card, write something inside, and mail it to someone you know – someone who could use a cheerful thought, a friend with whom you’ve been out of touch, a co-worker or colleague. Add a little something to the world.

Lichia is a Toronto artist who bases many of her designs and illustrations on her own travels and experiences. She is also a fountain pen user, which is how she discovered us! Her cards are printed right here in Toronto, which I love – Canadian and local artists and businesses supporting each other. We’re hoping to do another post on Lichia, her process of creating and the store of her business soon!

She also a really great holiday line, which will be up closer to the holidays.

I have many favourites, but here are a few:

Gotamago Cards at Wonder Pens Toronto wonderpens.ca

Those of you who don’t live close enough to visit our shop may not know that Jon has been sporting his beard for now literally months. Every once in a while I give it a trim, but the closest he’s ever been to shaving it off was when the baby figured out that beard grabbing is a pretty exciting thing. Now that Jon’s figured out he needs to change positions when Caleb’s arms start waving in towards the beard, there’s no danger of shaving. 

Gotamago Cards at Wonder Pens wonderpens.ca Toronto

Gotamago Cards at Wonder Pens wonderpens.ca Toronto

I have to laugh every time I see this card because the expression on this pug’s face is so true. Any dog owner whose had a dog in need of the cone can attest to this. The one time Super ever needed this was when he got a few mosquito bites near his snout. He pawed at it so much his whole face started swelling up, and on went the cone. You might think dogs would get frustrated and try to tear the thing off, which is basically held only by velcro, but Super just got really, really sad. It would have been funnier if it wasn’t so pathetic.

Gotamago Cards at Wonder Pens Toronto wonderpens.ca

Gotamago Cards at Wonder Pens wonderpens.ca Toronto

I think this one is officially my favourite card of the line, and not only because you can use this for basically every occasion from birthday to sympathy to thinking of you. I guess the reason you can use it for so many occasions is because the statement “authenticity is beautiful” really is a statement for life and, sometimes, for us living in a city with people bustling around you in the world we live in, that line really says it all.

J. Herbin Wax Seals – Supple Wax and Brass Seals

J. Herbin Supple Sealing Wax Brass Seals at wonderpens.ca Toronto Canada  J. Herbin Supple Sealing Wax Brass Seals at wonderpens.ca Toronto Canada

We’ve occasionally had thoughts about bringing in sealing wax and supplies from J. Herbin, but we’ve never actually pulled the trigger. So many letters and symbols for the seals, so many colours and types of wax!  In the last few weeks, however, we had a customer special order some sealing wax (Hi, Shannon!), and we figured no time like the present. I’ve been working on responding to a few of the letters we’ve received over InCoWriMo, and seeing some of the beautiful wax seals coming in didn’t hurt either.

We’ve now got a few colours of supple sealing wax from J. Herbin in the shop and online.

J. Herbin Supple Sealing Wax Brass Seals at wonderpens.ca Toronto Canada

Sealing wax has a wonderful history in securing letters to prevent spies and nosy mother-in-laws (just kidding!) from pouring over your deepest thoughts. It was also used to authenticate or certify things like proclamations – kind of like how you get an embossed seal from a notary public if you need something certified. In ye old days, it was coloured with vermilion, making it waxy and red, which is why red or burgundy is usually the traditional colour we see even today on certificates and wedding invitations.

Nowadays, thanks to the swift and unstoppable Canada Post (and federal laws), wax seals are a bit of a non-issue, and most used for ceremony – again on things like certificates or sending hand written letters.

J. Herbin Supple Sealing Wax Brass Seals at wonderpens.ca Toronto Canada

The original stuff was meant to crack and break when the letter was opened, and actually today, it’s still available in its earliest formula as “traditional” “Cire Banque” sealing wax from J. Herbin. The boxes have an irresistible vintage flair to them (so irresistible, I had to get a box myself…), but it’s a big box – it comes with ten sticks, each as long as the box. This traditional wax won’t make it through the postal system, so it’s good for hand delivered items, certificates or just decoratively.

For letters going through the mail, you’ll want to use supple sealing wax or flexible sealing wax. This stuff is a bit bendier, so it doesn’t break. I think the postal system uses a lot of rollers to pass envelopes through in sorting, which is why there’s a different rate for letters/papers going through flat, and a big jump to envelopes (parcels) that contain 3D objects, even if they are quite flat, since they can’t be processed mechanically.

J. Herbin Supple Sealing Wax Brass Seals at wonderpens.ca Toronto Canada

I waffled quite a bit about which seal I wanted. C for Chan? W for Wonder Pens? S for Super?? I ended up with the Anchor. Jon said it’s very reminiscent of the Sailor logo, which is …an anchor, but there’s just something about the romance of something coming from afar and oceans away (even though 95% of my letters are within Canada).

J. Herbin sells the brass seal with the symbol or the letter separately from the handle. If you’re interested special ordering either a brass seal (15$) or handle (14$). Send us an email (info at wonderpens.ca) if you are interested in special ordering one of the seals below.

J. Herbin Brass Seals

J. Herbin Supple Sealing Wax Brass Seals at wonderpens.ca Toronto Canada

Getting it onto the page is a little bit of trial and error and common sense – you can use a lighter or match to melt the end of the stick as it drips onto the page, or you can hold the wax stick over a candle while rotating wax stick so the melted wax doesn’t drip in, then rub the melty part onto the page. I’ll try to do a how-to post over the next bit, but it does come down to a little practice, getting a feel for how much wax you need, and how long to wait before pressing in the seal.

In the colours of supple sealing wax, we are currently offering this midnight blue (my favourite!), burgundy, ivory and gold. You can purchase an individual stick or a full box of four hereWe’re hoping to carry a few more colours of the supple wax in the next little while.

J. Herbin Supple Sealing Wax Brass Seals at wonderpens.ca Toronto Canada

In my current daily life involving diapers, mashing bits of food that apparently aren’t tasty, and trying to keep the dog from licking the baby, playing around with sealing wax was one of the highlights of my day. Here is one of many possible combinations of mixed wax – ivory and gold.
  J. Herbin Supple Sealing Wax Brass Seals at wonderpens.ca Toronto Canada

J. Herbin Supple Sealing Wax Brass Seals at wonderpens.ca Toronto Canada

 

This is just another way to add a bit of old world to your letter writing, a bit of flourish and thoughtfulness. To take the time to write to a friend, to create a wax seal, to take a walk to the post office – this is just a way to pause in our lives and say hello.