Sunday, November 27, 2011

My Daydream

The other day on Twitter, @MissiveMaven retweeted a post about the paper letter coming back. There was a name "Bob Slate" that I was not familiar with. So I clicked on the link and watched the video.

That has been something I've daydreamed about for many years, owning and running my own stationery store! There aren't many small stationers here in Hawaii that I know of. The only one I know of is The Paperie in Kahala Mall Shopping Center. Gone are Fresh Inc and Paper Roses as far as I know. Barnes and Noble or Papyrus stores are probably the best places to purchase stationery, Moleskine, blank journals, etc. Of course greeting cards you can get almost anywhere else. But those are "big box" stores, not locally owned and not run by the owner where you'll probably get more personal service. And none of the aforementioned business promoted handwritten letters or things handwritten.

In my store I would sell good stationery like Crane Papers, and also some European papers like Amalfi and Pineader and Clairfontaine.

I'd like to sell good quality pens like Pelikan, Namiki, Pilot and also offer good affordable pens too. I would offer calligraphy service too. Would try to teach non pen people to become pen people, willing to take the effort to handwrite letters and maybe even seal the envelope with a wax seal.

But you know, I've kinda learned to never say never, however I really doubt this daydream will will every come through. One I don't have the money.Two I prefer to work for an employer where I'm guaranteed a paycheck, get paid vacation and sick leave, have a retirement fund, and most importantly medical insurance! Also I think I'd pretty much suck as a business owner. I don't like charging people money even for services I may provide. I rather someone else charge the customer and pay me for the service. Besides there must be a reason why there is only one stationery store here in Honolulu.

Well I guess dreams can come true!

Monday, November 21, 2011


Gasp. I am writing with a ballpoint pen!

To some pen fanciers that's frowned upon. It has to be written with a fine fountain pen, a fine writing instrument. But I've ruined so many store bought cards that do not do well with fountain pen ink. After the first downstroke I watch the ink my nice line feather into a hairy blob. A ballpoint never fails here. Heck I'm not even using a fancy ballpoint pen like a Mont Blanc or a Parker. Just a pen I bought from Fisher Hawaii.

I hope she will still like the postcard...

That's it, short post. Pau!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Reduce Reuse Recycle

When I see these three, words I keep hearing North Shore resident Jack Johnson singing his song titled Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. That simple song has allowed those words to sink into my head. I'm starting to get interested in this "movement" to save the Earth. Makes sense ecologically and often financially, it can save you money.

One evening while walking back to our car, (well mini-van to be exact) from dinner at a restaurant, I noticed a store that I had not seen before. Looks like some furniture and other items, but a guitar caught my eye. We walked into Stand Up Eight and had a look around.

Store owner Mark Ariyoshi greeted us.

He explained that his store takes items that were headed to trash landfill, and repurpose them. It started off as primarily furniture items but now has evolved into a cool art gallery of sorts. Now there are items from various artist all created/repurposed out of almost thrown away items.

Here is a small photo gallery of the art in Stand Up Eight...

Even his business card is on recycled cardboard!

One thing that Mark loves is wood, and so do I. I've always loved nice wood on my gun stocks or my guitars, basses and ukulele. He showed me his small work area. I loved seeing the Japanese woodworking tools...better yet they are mostly hand tools!

He told me about how he tried to talk his in laws out of cutting down their mango tree but they did anyway. So he had the trunk resawn and kiln dried. Mango is a very nice wood. Here are a couple shots of his workshop, the mango is in the corner.

Lots of wood items in the store. I saw a lot of "hints" of wood as a part of some items. No sense wasting those little pieces of scrap wood left over after cutting larger pieces to size.

This lamp really caught my eye. I love when the artist leaves a part or parts of wood unmachined in it's natural state.

A closer look shows the beautiful figure in the wood.

The word quirky or eccentric comes comes to mind, but I'm no word guru and I hope I'm not wrong. Maybe I'll just say it's a really cool place.

Near the door is a nice touch, this basket of origami tsuru (crane) made out of what else...recycled paper!

I had to ask how he came up with the name Stand Up Eight. He said it was part of an Asian proverb "Fall down seven times, stand up eight."


So why am I writing a post that is not about pens, paper, inks, handwriting, etc that this blog normally is about? I've been thinking about expanding this blog beyond pens and paper etc. I have a Posterous blog for miscellaneous thoughts that used to be for a Photo Project 365 before I gave up on that, but it's a bit redundant for me to have 2 blogs with so little posts. Besides views on Posterous really dropped off after I changed away from Project 365. I may try the photo Project 365 again next year since it does improve my skill as a photographer, but I plan to expand this blog into more than pen and paper.

Besides, aren't some of us pen and paper people much like Mark. We rescue old fountain pens from garage sales. We rebuild them or at the very least replace the ink sac. Some of us find and collect vintage ink bottles. I know there are those who store letters received in old cigar boxes or wine crates.

Anyway for those in Honolulu, Stand Up Eight is on South King St on the makai side past Pensacola St near Bac Nam Vietnamese Restaurant and Cigar Cigar. BTW they sell cigar boxes at Cigar Cigar!

Look for the origami curtain in the window.

You know I forgot about that guitar, the very item that first caught my attention. Perhaps some day I will commission Mark to build a writing desk out of recycled wood.

Maybe I'll do more with pen and paper, and post it here...